Julie Italy 8 Comments

If you are planning your first trip to Florence, this Florence itinerary is perfect for you. With 2 days in Florence, you have just enough time to visit the highlights of this beautiful city. Tour the Uffizi Gallery, climb the dome of the Duomo, see Michelangelo’s David, stroll across Ponte Vecchio, and watch the sunset from rooftop bars or stunning viewpoints of the city.

We want to help you plan the best visit possible to Florence. In this guide, learn how to visit Florence’s top sights without spending hours in line, the best places to eat and drink with a view, and the most efficient way to plan your time.

You will have to do some advance planning by booking entrance tickets and restaurant reservations, but this will save you hours of time once in Florence. We’ll let you know how to do this, too. Tim and I are Type A planners and detest standing around in line, and we’ll share with you lots of tips we learned from our multiple visits to Florence.

I do my best to keep the hours of operation and pricing up to date for each attraction, however, these can change at any time. I recommend getting updated hours and pricing for your dates of travel. The link to the official website is provided for each site.

Overview of Florence

Florence is a relatively small, compact city. In the historic city center, which is a maze of narrow streets and piazzas, you will find the majority of Florence’s top sights, such as the Duomo (the Florence Cathedral), Palazzo Vecchio, Galleria Accademia, Ponte Vecchio, and the Uffizi Gallery.

The historic center of Florence is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Not only will you see buildings that date back to the Renaissance, but also the 14th century medieval walls that once protected the city.

The Arno River runs through Florence. Ponte Vecchio is the most famous bridge crossing this river. On the north side of the river you will find many of important cathedrals and museums in Florence. The south side of the Arno River is where you will see villas, gardens, and viewpoints for sweeping vistas of Florence.

How Many Days Do You Need in Florence?

Ideally, plan on spending at least two days in Florence. This gives you enough time to visit the main sites without feeling like you are in a race. 2 days in Florence also gives you enough time to add on a nice dinner, have a drink at a rooftop bar, and have a little of downtime, rather than packing your days with hours and hours of busy sightseeing. That gets to be exhausting day after day.

More than two days allows you to visit some off the beaten path places in Florence and to day trip into Tuscany.

Best Things to Do with 2 Days in Florence

Below is a list of the top places to visit if you have 2 days in Florence. For a full list of places to go, read our article Best Things to Do in Florence.

  • The Florence Cathedral, aka the Duomo. This complex also includes the dome, the Baptistery, Giotto’s Bell Tower, Santa Reparata, and the Opera del Duomo Museum
  • Accademia Gallery to see Michelangelo’s David
  • The Uffizi Gallery
  • Piazza della Signoria
  • Palazzo Vecchio
  • Ponte Vecchio
  • Piazzale Michelangelo
  • Boboli Gardens & Pitti Palace
  • Mercato Centrale
  • Piazza della Repubblica

When Are Places Closed in Florence?

Before we get started on the itinerary, it is very important to know that some museums and cathedrals are not open every day of the week. If your visit falls when some of these sites are closed, you will have to modify this itinerary.

Closed on Sunday

  • The Florence Cathedral. On Sundays, you cannot enter the main floor of the Florence Cathedral, since it is closed for worship.
  • Santa Reparata does not open until 1:30 pm on Sunday.
  • The dome of the Florence Cathedral does not open until 12:45 pm on Sundays.

Closed on Monday

On Mondays, these are the sites in Florence that are closed. If possible, while planning your Italy itinerary, try to avoid putting Florence on a Monday.

  • The Uffizi Gallery
  • Accademia Gallery
  • Pitti Palace
  • Villa Bardini
  • San Lorenzo Market & Mercato Centrale

Closed on Tuesday

The Opera del Duomo Museum is closed the first Tuesday of each month.

Closed on Thursday

Palazzo Vecchio closes early on Thursday. Closing time is at 2 pm rather than 7 pm.

2 Days in Florence Itinerary

Florence Itinerary Day 1

The Duomo, Michelangelo’s David, Palazzo Vecchio & Rooftop Bars

On your first day in Florence, you will visit the main sights in the historic city center, gaze over the city from the dome of the Florence Cathedral and the Arnolfo Tower, and add in a few rooftop bars along the way.

Note: If you plan to do this on a Monday, you will have to skip Mercato Centrale and move the Accademia Gallery to the following day, since they are both closed on Monday. If you do this on Sunday, you will not be able to enter the main floor of the Duomo and you cannot climb the dome until 12:45 pm.

How to Use This Map: Click the tab in the top left hand corner of the map to view the layers (places to go and the walking route). You can click the check marks to hide or show layers. If you click the icons on the map, you can get more information about each point of interest.
If you click the star next to the title of the map, this map will be added to your Google Maps account. To view it on your phone or computer, open Google Maps, click the menu button, go to “Your Places,” click Maps, and you will see this map on your list.

Morning: The Duomo Complex

The Florence Cathedral, also called the Duomo di Firenze and Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore, is one of the most recognizable cathedrals in the world.

Florence Cathedral in July | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

The Florence Cathedral


Florence Cathedral

The cathedral is part of the monument complex of Santa Maria del Fiore, which also includes the Opera del Duomo Museum, the bell tower, the dome of the cathedral, the baptistery, and Santa Reparata. These are all located within close proximity of one another, on Piazza del Duomo.

There are several ticket types for visiting the Duomo complex. The Brunelleschi Pass is the ticket we recommend purchasing, since it includes all of the sites in the Duomo complex, including the dome climb. It takes about 4 hours to see all of the sites.

We have a detailed guide about how to visit the Florence Cathedral, which includes photos and more information about each of these sites. It’s also helpful for picking out what to do here, if you don’t feel like you need to see everything. But here is a brief overview and how I recommend planning your time.

Opening Times at the Duomo Complex

Each site has a different opening time and this will impact the order in which you visit them. Get updated hours on the official website.

  • Dome of the Cathedral: 8:15 am Monday through Saturday; 12:45 pm on Sunday
  • Main Floor of the Cathedral: 10:15 am Monday through Saturday; closed Sundays
  • Santa Reparata: 10:15 am
  • The Baptistery: 8:30 am
  • Opera del Duomo Museum: 8:30 am
  • Giotto’s Bell Tower: 8:15 am

I recommend starting at the Opera del Duomo Museum (this always seems to have a line so getting here early could minimize your wait) or Giotto’s Bell Tower at opening time. This lets you visit one of the busier sites before it gets crowded. Many people start showing up around 9 am.

You will book a time slot for the dome climb, so there is no need to rush here and get in line early, since you will simply show up for time you booked. Make sure you do this in advance, preferably a few weeks before your visit to Florence.

Florence Dome View | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

The view from the dome

 The Last Judgement Florence | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

The Last Judgement frescoes on the interior of the dome


Florence Baptistery Ceiling | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

The mosaic ceiling of the Baptistery

You can visit these sites an any order, but here is a sample itinerary for the Duomo complex, if you want to visit everything:

8:30 am: Opera del Duomo Museum
9:30 am: Dome climb (book this time slot in advance)
10:30 am: Baptistery
11:00 am: Giotto’s bell tower
11:45 am: Main floor of the cathedral and Santa Reparata. There is always a line to enter the cathedral but it tends to move fast. Once inside the cathedral, you can enter Santa Reparata by descending the stairs on the main floor.
1:00 pm: Walk to San Lorenzo Market

By booking the dome climb early, you can use the remaining time in the morning to visit the sites that look the most interesting. If you want to visit the Florence Cathedral with a guide, here is a very highly rated tour that includes entrance tickets and the dome climb.

For an explanation of each site within the Duomo Complex, the ticket types, and helpful tips, don’t miss our Guide to the Florence Cathedral.

Lunch: Mercato Centrale

From the Duomo Complex it is a 6-minute walk to San Lorenzo Market.

San Lorenzo Market is made up of two markets, an outdoor market and an indoor market located inside of the Mercato Centrale building.

At the outdoor market, you can go shopping for leather goods, pottery, and souvenirs. It is open Tuesday through Saturday.

Go inside of Mercato Centrale for a culinary tour of Italy. We loved walking around the small shops and gathering food for a picnic lunch.

Mercato Centrale

Mercato Centrale | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

2:00 pm: Accademia Gallery

Next, walk over to the Accademia Gallery (a 7-minute walk).

Accademia Gallery (also called Galleria dell’Accademia) is best known for Michelangelo’s statue of David. This statue once stood outside on Piazza della Signoria but was moved here in 1873.

Michelangelos David | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary


The statue of David is a masterpiece and it is one of the most famous works of art in the world. This small museum also contains other works of art by Michelangelo and paintings from other Florentine artists.

A visit here is quick, taking 30 to 45 minutes.

How to Visit the Accademia Gallery

Make your reservation online in advance to avoid waiting in long ticket line. I recommend booking the first time slot of the day.
Cost: €16; included on the Firenze Card (advance reservation required)
Hours: 8:15 am – 6:50 pm; closed Mondays
Website: Get more information and the link to purchase your tickets in advance on the official website.
More Ticket Sellers: You can also purchase an entry ticket through GetYourGuide or take a guided tour of the gallery. The last we checked, tickets purchased on the GetYourGuide website can be canceled up to 24 hours in advance with a full refund.

3:00 pm: Piazza della Repubblica

From the Accademia Gallery, it is a 10-minute stroll to Piazza della Repubblica. Along the way, you will walk right past the Duomo.

This is one of the main squares in Florence. Sitting around the square are several cafes, a great place to take a break and grab a bite to eat or something to drink. Kids will love the carousel that sits in the center of the piazza.

If you want to take a break and have a fantastic view of the Florence Cathedral, there are two rooftop bars to visit.

Tosca & Nino is a rooftop bar and restaurant with great views of the Florence Cathedral. You don’t need a reservation and they serve drinks and lunch. It is located on top of the Rinascente department store on Piazza della Repubblica. Here is the view.

Tosca and Nino Rooftop Bar Florence | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

The view from Tosca & Nino

One block over is View on Art. This small rooftop bar has an even better view of the Duomo but service can be slow and the food gets poor reviews. But it’s a great place to hang out for half an hour, have a drink, and enjoy this spectacular view of Florence.

View on Art Rooftop Bar

View on Art

You have enough time to visit both if you like. However, we have more rooftop bars on the list for later today.

4:00 pm: Palazzo Vecchio

From Piazza della Repubblica, it takes just 5 minutes to walk to Piazza della Signoria. Along the way, you will pass Fontana del Porcellino. If you rub the nose of the boar, legend has it that you are guaranteed a visit back to Florence in the future.

Piazza della Signoria is the large, open square sits in front of Palazzo Vecchio. On the square, see the Loggia dei Lanzi (open air sculpture gallery), a replica of the statue of David, and the Neptune Fountain.

Piazza della Signoria

Piazza della Signoria | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

While here, you have the option to climb the Arnolfo Tower on Palazzo Vecchio for one of the best views of Florence. This is one of our favorite views in Florence, since you get a breathtaking view of the Duomo.

Florence Italy | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

The view from Arnolfo Tower

How to Visit Palazzo Vecchio:

Cost: Museum €12.50, Tower €12.50; included on the Firenze Card
Hours for the Tower: April 1 to September 30: 9 am – 7 pm; October 1 to March 31: 9 am – 7 pm; on Thursdays closing time is 2 pm; last admission is one hour before closing
More Information: Visit the official website for full details on hours, tours, and to purchase your tickets

5:30 pm: Aperitifs & Dinner

In Florence, dinner doesn’t typically start until 7:00 pm, but 5:30 pm is the perfect time to have an aperitif. An aperitif is a pre-dinner drink served with a few small snacks or charcuterie board.

One of the best places to have an aperitif is from a rooftop bar. For a full list, check out our guide to the Best Rooftop Bars in Florence.

Divina Terrazza is a short walk from Piazza della Signoria. This is a more casual spot and the views of the Duomo are amazing.

Angel Roofbar is also a short walk from Piazza della Signoria. The views aren’t quite as good as from Divina Terrazza, as your view is more about seeing Palazzo Vecchio than the Duomo.

B Roof is another rooftop bar in Florence with nice views of the Florence Cathedral. Have a drink here and then have dinner at the B Roof Restaurant, which is also on top of Grand Hotel Baglioni, for spectacular views of the Duomo.

Best Florence Restaurants

B Roof Restaurant

After the aperitif, have dinner in Florence. We ate lunch one day at Trattoria Il Bargello (but it is also a great place for dinner), a casual restaurant that serves very good pasta dishes at a very reasonable price.

And make sure you save room for gelato!

Florence Restaurant

Trattoria Il Bargello

Florence Itinerary Day 2

Uffizi Gallery, Ponte Vecchio & Piazzale Michelangelo

Today you will visit one of the best art museums in the world, the Uffizi Gallery, and spend the afternoon visiting the gardens and panoramic viewpoints of Florence.

9:30 am: The Uffizi Gallery

The Uffizi Gallery is not only one of the most important art museums in Italy, it’s also one of the largest art museums in the world.

This museum contains thousands of Renaissance works of art, donated to Florence by the Medici family. The Uffizi is also one of the oldest museums in the world, opening in 1865.

On display are works of art by Leonardo da Vinci, Botticelli, Cimabue, Michelangelo, Titian, Raphael, Caravaggio, and many more.

Uffizi Gallery | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

Ponte Vecchio | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

The view of Ponte Vecchio from the Uffizi Gallery

The Uffizi Gallery opens at 8:15 am, so you can get an early start today, which would allow you to also visit the Bargello Museum or other sites in Florence. However, if you want a more leisurely day, plan your visit for some time around 9:30 am.

How to Visit the Uffizi Gallery:

Make your reservation in advance. You will book a time slot and anytime between 8:15 am and 10:00 am works well for this itinerary. A visit to the Uffizi Gallery typically lasts 2 hours.
Cost: €25; included on the Firenze Card (advance reservation required)
Hours: 8:15 am – 6:30 pm Wednesday to Sunday; 8:15 am – 9:30 pm Tuesday; closed Monday
Website: Make your reservation online in advance on the official website or through GetYourGuide. Through GetYourGuide, the last we checked you can cancel your reservation up to 24 hours in advance and get a full refund.

Optional: The Bargello

The Bargello is an art museum that contains more Renaissance masterpieces by Michelangelo, Ghiberti, and Donatello as well as ceramics, tapestries, coins, and armor. It is housed in the oldest public building in Florence.

This is worth it for those with a big interest in art. Start at the Bargello at 8:15 am, spend an hour and a half here, and then walk to the Uffizi, spending the rest of the morning at the Uffizi. You could book a 10:30 am entrance ticket into the Uffizi Gallery.

Bargello Museum

The Bargello | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

How to Visit the Bargello Museum

Hours: Monday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Sunday 8:15 am to 1:50 pm with last entry at 1:00 pm; Saturdays 8:15 am to 6:50 pm
Cost: €10 plus a €3 booking fee; included on the Firenze Card
Website: Get updated hours and pricing on the official website.

Italy Travel Guide

12:00 pm: The Vasari Corridor & Ponte Vecchio

This is also optional, but it is a hidden gem in Florence and something unique to do, if you can get a reservation for a guided tour.

The Vasari Corridor is an elevated, enclosed walkway that connects Palazzo Vecchio with Palazzo Pitti. It was constructed in 1565 to allow the Grand Duke to walk from his palace to Palazzo Vecchio. The walkway passes through the Uffizi Gallery, past the church of Santa Felicita, and over the Ponte Vecchio.

For many years, this corridor has been closed to the public. It recently underwent a major restoration project and can only be visited on a guided tour. Learn more here.

If you choose not to take a tour of the Vasari Corridor, walk along the Arno River to Ponte Vecchio.

Ponte Vecchio Photo | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

Ponte Vecchio

Ponte Vecchio, which means “old bridge,” is a medieval stone bridge that spans the Arno River. For centuries, shops have lined the sides of the bridge. Now, most of these shops sell jewelry.

Stroll across Ponte Vecchio to the opposite side of the river.

1:00 pm: Lunch at Signorvino Firenze

This restaurant, which is tucked away in a wine shop, is located on the Arno River and has awesome views of Ponte Vecchio. For the best experience, make a reservation in advance and request a table on the outdoor terrace.

Lunch in Florence | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

Signorvino Florence

2:30 pm: Gardens in Florence

This afternoon, you have the option to visit several gardens in Florence. They each offer something a little bit different, including great views of the city. Visit them all or just pick one or two. To get from one to the other, you will have to do some walking, and some of it will be up and down hills. These are all located on the south side of the Arno River.

Boboli Gardens & Pitti Palace

The Pitti Palace is a palace built in 1457 by Brunelleschi for the Pitti family. In 1550, it was purchased by Cosimo I de’ Medici as the new Grand Ducal residence. Now, the palace contains five museums: the Museum of Russian Icons, the Treasury of the Grand Dukes, the Imperial and Royal Apartments, the Museum of Costume and Fashion, and the Gallery of Modern Art.

Boboli Gardens sits behind the Pitti Palace. The gardens contain numerous Renaissance statues and fountains. From these gardens, you also get a very nice view of Florence.

Boboli Gardens

Boboli Gardens

How to Visit the Pitti Palace and Boboli Gardens:

Cost: €10 for Boboli Gardens; €16 for Pitti Palace; €22 for a combined ticket; included on the Firenze Card
Hours: Boboli Gardens opens at 8:15 am; closing time varies depending upon the season; Pitti Palace is open Tuesday through Sunday from 8:15 am to 6:30 pm
Website: Visit the official website for updated hours and pricing for Boboli Gardens and the Pitti Palace. Reservations are required on Saturdays and public holidays.

The Bardini Gardens

The Bardini Gardens (also called Giardino Bardini) is the Renaissance garden of Villa Bardini. It makes a nice alternative (or a nice addition) to the busier Boboli Gardens.

This garden is located on the same hill as Boboli Gardens. The Bardini Gardens are much smaller, but because of their location, offer a better view of Florence.

On a visit here, there are two things to do: stroll through the gardens and visit the villa.

Inside of the villa there are art exhibits in the various rooms. Our favorite part was the terrace on the top of the villa with its stunning panoramic views of Florence.

Best Views of Florence | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

The view from Villa Bardini

In Bardini Gardens, make sure you see the Wisteria pergola. The wisteria was brought here from China by Marco Polo. It blooms in April and May but is pretty all year round.

How to Visit the Bardini Gardens:

Enter through Villa Bardini.
To get here from Signorvino Firenze, it is a 7-minute (400 meter) uphill walk on Costa San Giorgio (you will pass the house of Galileo Galilei on this walk).
To get here from the Boboli Gardens, it is a 5-minute walk on Via del Forte di S. Giorgio to Villa Bardini.
Tickets cost €10 and the Bardini Gardens are included in the ticket for Boboli Gardens. Get updates on the official website.

Rose Garden

The Rose Garden, also called Giardino delle Rose, free to visit and offers a unique view of Florence.

Florence Rose Garden

Rose Garden

To get here from the Bardini Gardens, it is a 1.3 km walk that takes about 20 minutes.

We entered at Autorita Di Ambito Ato Toscana Centro, on Viale Giuseppe Poggi. It only takes a few minutes to walk through the gardens. Once you are finished, there is a path that leads up the hillside to Piazzale Michelangelo.

PRO TRAVEL TIP: If you visit the Pitti Palace, Boboli Gardens, Bardini Gardens, and the Rose Garden, this will take about 3 hours, depending on how much time you spend at each place.

5:30 pm: Piazzale Michelangelo & San Miniato al Monte

Piazzale Michelangelo is one of the best places to watch the sunset in Florence. Sunset can range anywhere from 6:30 pm (spring and fall) to 9 pm (early summer). If you want to be here at sunset in the summer, you will have to adjust this itinerary. Either spend longer in the gardens, start your day later, or visit San Miniato al Monte before Piazzale Michelangelo.

San Miniato al Monte

San Miniato al Monte (St. Minias on the Mountain) is a basilica that stands on one of the highest points of Florence. It is located on the hillside above Piazzale Michelangelo and it takes about 10 minutes to walk here.

From the terrace you get a wonderful panoramic view of Florence. You can also visit the inside of the church and stroll through the cemetery that surrounds the basilica.

Florence Itinerary

The view from San Miniato al Monte | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

Piazzale Michelangelo

The view from Piazzale Michelangelo is beautiful all day. Here is the view in the mid-afternoon:

Piazzale Michelangelo Daytime View

Piazzale Michelangelo in the afternoon

And here is the view at sunset:

Piazzale Michelangelo

Piazzale Michelangelo at sunset

If you are visiting Florence between early May and late July, sunset time will be between 8 and 9 pm. Since this is rather late in the day, you can get an early dinner first, then walk to Piazzale Michelangelo, ideally getting here about an hour before sunset. You also have the option to visit a rooftop bar first, and then take a taxi to Piazzale Michelangelo.

Or, simply visit Piazzale Michelangelo in the late afternoon, enjoy the view, and then take a taxi back to the city center for dinner (and maybe sunset views from another rooftop restaurant).

To time your visit, you can get sunset times here. This can be a busy place to visit, and if your goal is to take sunset photos, plan on getting here at least an hour before sunset, to get a good spot.

Once you are finished at Piazzale Michelangelo, you can either walk back to the city center or hire a taxi. If sunset is at 9 pm, you will get back to the city center between 9:30 and 10:00 pm.

Make Your Reservations in Advance

Below are places in Florence that we recommend making an advance reservation, plus the links to make your planning a little bit easier.

If you plan to visit a rooftop bar for an aperitif or dinner, you should make a reservation in advance. Get links to the websites of the rooftop bars in our Florence Rooftop Bar Guide.

How to Get around Florence

Florence is a very compact city and everything we have listed on this Florence itinerary is within walking distance. The biggest outlier is Piazzale Michelangelo, but it is possible to take a taxi here or to get back to the city center.

How to Get to Florence

If you are traveling by train through Italy, the Florence train station is called the Florence Santa Maria Novella station. It is located northwest of the historic city center. From this station, it is a 10-minute walk to the city center. Many hotels in Florence are also within walking distance of the train station. If you don’t want to walk, it is possible to hire a taxi to take you to your hotel.

If you have a car, it’s best to park outside of the city center, unless you are staying at a hotel that offers parking. But beware, driving in Florence is a nightmare.

The city center of Florence is a ZTL area (limited traffic zone). You can only drive in the city center if you have a permit or if you are staying at a hotel that is located within the ZTL.

We stayed at a hotel within the ZTL. Driving there was very challenging. The roads in the city center are one-way. Along one road the direction may change several times. According to the doorman at our hotel, the direction of the roads can change day by day (so Google Maps is not always correct).

Plan on parking in a lot outside of the ZTL and then walking into the city center or taking a taxi. Convenient paid lots include the lot next to the train station, at Central Parking Firenze (on the north side of Florence), and Parcheggio Sant’Ambrogio (on the east side of town).

If you are flying into the Florence Airport, you can take a bus or taxi to the city center and your hotel.

Palazzo Vecchio

Palazzo Vecchio | 2 Days in Florence Itinerary

Best Time to Visit Florence

In general, spring and fall are the best times of the year to visit Florence. During this time, the weather is great for sightseeing and crowds tend to be lower than the busy summer months. But here is a breakdown by season of what you can expect in Florence:

WINTER: It’s chilly in Florence during the winter months. Daytime high’s average around 10 – 11°C (in the low-50’s) and it can get down close to freezing at night. Rainfall is about average for the year (averaging about 6 days of rain per month in December, January, and February), but the skies tend to be cloudier in the winter months.

SPRING: As the weather warms up in the spring, rain chances also go up. Spring is one of the wettest seasons to visit Florence, but not quite as rainy as the fall months. In early spring, the high temperature is 16°C (60°F) and it continues to get warmer week by week, reaching an average high of 27°C (80°F) by June.

SUMMER: Expect the biggest crowds of the year and hot weather during the summer months. Daily high temperatures average 32°C (90°F) but they can easily get up to 35°C (95°F). Rainfall is low. If you plan to visit in the summer months, make your hotel reservations far in advance as well as your entrance tickets into the museums.

FALL: In early fall, crowds can still be high, not really quieting down until the end of October. Daytime high’s range from 26°C (79°F) in early fall and cooling off to 16°C (60°F) by late fall. Autumn is the wettest time to visit Florence (mid-September through late November), so bring an umbrella if you plan to be here at this time.

VERDICT: The best time to visit Florence is May through mid-June. The weather is nice and crowds are manageable. If you don’t mind the chance of rain, the end of September into October is also a nice time to visit, since crowds are lower.

Where to Stay in Florence

For recommendations on where to stay, read our Best Hotels and Neighborhoods Guide for Florence. Learn where to stay for a great view of the Florence Cathedral and Ponte Vecchio and get recommendations whether you are looking for a budget hotel, luxury hotel, or if you are traveling as a family.

Florence Cathedral Dome

The view from Giotto’s Bell Tower

Tours of Florence

Joining a tour can help save you time waiting in line, get tickets to a site that may have sold out in advance, or allow you to experience Florence in a unique way, such as a cooking class. Here are some of the best tours in Florence.

Climb the dome, visit the Baptistery, and tour the Opera del Duomo Museum with an experienced guide on this small group tour.

This small group tour is the perfect way to get the most out of your visit to the Uffizi Gallery.

Take a guided tour of the Uffizi and Accademia Gallery.

Go shopping in the central market in Florence and then learn how to cook a Tuscan meal. This tour gets nothing but rave reviews.

Take a food tour of Florence or a 2-hour guided sightseeing bike tour.

Drink your way through Florence on this guided tour that takes you to some of Florence’s popular bars and past famous historic landmarks.



Frequently Asked Questions

How many days do you need in Florence?

Ideally, plan on spending two or more days in Florence. This gives you enough time to visit the top sites without feeling like you are in a race. More than two days allows you to visit some off the beaten path places and to day trip into Tuscany.

Is 2 days enough for Florence?

Yes, 2 days in Florence is enough time to visit the main sites, explore the historic city center, watch the sunset from Piazzale Michelangelo (one of the most beautiful sunset locations in Italy), plus add on another art museum or two (for art aficionados), a few rooftop bars, or take a cooking class or walking tour of the city.

Is it possible to spend one day in Florence?

With proper planning, you can visit the highlights of Florence in one very busy day. Florence is a small city and most of the top sites are located within the historic city center, which makes it quick and easy to get from place to place. You will have to book some tickets in advance but with one day, you will be able to visit the Duomo, climb the dome, tour the Uffizi Gallery, see Michelangelo’s statue of David, and watch the sunset from Piazzale Michelangelo.

Where Are You Going Next?

If you are just beginning to plan your Italy itinerary, take a look at our 10 Days in Italy Itinerary for five different ways to spend 10 days in Italy. We also have a detailed 10 day itinerary that includes Rome, Florence, the Cinque Terre, and Venice.

For those with more time, check out our 14 day Italy itinerary, which covers the highlights of Italy.

FLORENCE: For a list of things to do, take a look at our Florence Bucket List. We also have information about how to visit the Florence Cathedral, about the best rooftop bars in Florence, the best viewpoints in Florence, and where to stay in Florence.

DAY TRIPS FROM FLORENCE: Here are 15 day trips to take from Florence, with practical information on how to plan your day.

TUSCANY: Get started with our guide to the Best Things to Do in Tuscany. Learn how to plan your visit with our Tuscany Itinerary, which has sample itineraries, whether you have 3 days, 5 days, or an entire week in Tuscany.

TUSCAN HILL TOWNS: Check out our detailed guides to Montepulciano, Pienza, Montalcino, San Quirico d’Orcia, San Gimignano, Monteriggioni, Lucca, Volterra, Arezzo, and Cortona.

SIENA: Plan your visit to Siena with our articles Best Things to Do in Siena, One Perfect Day in Siena and How to Visit the Siena Cathedral.

PISA: Learn how to visit the Leaning Tower of Pisa while traveling from Florence to the Cinque Terre and how to combine Lucca and Pisa in one day trip from Florence.

If you have any questions about this Florence itinerary or how to spend 2 days in Florence, let us know in the comment section below.

More Information for Your Trip to Italy

VENICE: We cover the top experiences in Venice in our Venice Bucket List. Learn where to get the best views of Venice in our article 12 Beautiful Views of Venice. And to help you plan your time, take a look at our one day in Venice itinerary and two days in Venice itinerary.

ROME: For a list of the top experiences in Rome, read our article Best Things to Do in Rome. Learn how to put these together in our 2 Day Rome Itinerary. And don’t miss our guides to the Best Views of Rome, best Rooftop Bars in Rome, and our Rome Restaurant Guide.

BEST OF ITALY: In our guide to the Best Places to Visit in Italy, we list 25 beautiful destinations to consider for your next trip to Italy.

NORTHERN ITALY: Verona is a beautiful city to add to your Italy itinerary and we also have a detailed guides on Lake Garda and how to day trip to Lake Como and Bellagio. In our Northern Italy Itinerary, visit Venice, the Dolomites, Verona, Milan, and Lake Como.

PUGLIA: Read about 15 beautiful places to visit in Puglia and the best things to do in Alberobello. We also have a guide to the best things to do on the Gargano Peninsula and how to spend one day in Vieste.

We have TONS more information about Italy in our Italy Travel Guide, including Rome, Florence, Venice, Tuscany, the Dolomites, the Amalfi Coast, the Cinque Terre, Basilicata, and Puglia.

2 Days in Florence Italy Itinerary


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Comments 8

  1. Avatar for Cheryl

    Hello. We will be in Florence on the first Sunday of the month and it looks like some of the museums are free on that day. Do you advise going on that day?

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Typically museums are more crowded on the free days. However, if that is the only day you have or want to save some money, it would be worth going on Sunday. Cheers, Julie

  2. Avatar for Ed

    Hi Julie – We are planning 2 weeks in Italy for approximately Nov 15-28 2024. So excited, I hope this is a good time to do it. Venice 3 days, Milan/Como 3 days, Florence 4 days (incl Pisa and Tuscany) and Rome 3 days. Using your itineraries for everything, thanks for all the great info. I see you mentioned a few things here in Florence are “included on the Firenze card” I can’t seem to find on the itinerary what that is, could you explain it?

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Hello Ed. All of the places you list will be great to visit in November. It will be the off season, so crowds will be low, which will be nice. The Firenze Card is a travel card that includes some sites in Florence and gives you skip the line privileges. It was once a great deal, but now fewer sites are included on the card and it has become more expensive. In general, I don’t recommend the Firenze card for Florence. There is minimal to zero savings and you still have to do extra work reserving time slots in advance, so I think it is best to make all your Florence reservations in advance. We talk about the Firenze Card more on our Things to Do on Your First Visit to Florence post, if you want to learn more. There is also a link to the official site on that post. Have a great time in Italy! Cheers, Julie

  3. Avatar for Laura Chan
    Laura Chan

    Hi Julie,
    Do you think climbing the Duomo and the Arnolfo Tower on the same day ( Day 1 on Florence itinerary) is too much climbing? Trying to decide if we do both . I was trying to book the Palazzo Vecchio museum and possible Tower on the official website. Are you able to book 6 months in advance? I am only seeing you can book a week out.
    Thank you!

    1. Avatar for Julie Post

      Hello Laura. Climbing the towers is one of our favorite things to do so I think climbing both of them on the same day is a great idea. We purchased our Arnolfo Tower tickets onsite but this was in 2014, when travel wasn’t as busy as it has been the past few years. I don’t know what the time frame is for purchasing tickets in advance for that tower. Many sites are one month to 3 months in advance and rarely are tickets released 6 months in advance. I just looked on the official website and I see the same thing you see. However, if you click on INFO, PRACTICES AND SERVICES, there is some text that says that the tower and battlements are currently inaccessible. I don’t know how accurate that is. I find Italian websites to be hard to use and not always up to date, but there is a chance that the tower is currently closed (?). If your visit is 6 months from now, I think there is a good chance that will change. I recommend that you check the official website periodically for any changes/updates. Cheers, Julie

  4. Avatar for Richard

    We’ll have 2.5 days in Florence. I wonder is the side trip over to Pisa worth the half day to get up the tower (along with the Pisa Duomo/Musuem)? Or should I just keep it all to Florence?


    1. Avatar for Julie Post

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