1. Ponte Vecchio
The Ponte Vecchio may well be the most widely recognized icon of Florence, and its graceful arches topped by a jumble of shops is most certainly one of the city’s prettiest scenes.
2. San Lorenzo
The Medici commissioned the best talent for the family church and burial chapels: Brunelleschi for the church and Michelangelo for the chapel intended to memorialize their most illustrious princes.
3. Piazza della Signoria
This broad square has been the center of power in Florence since its 14th-century origins – and perhaps even before, as Etruscan and Roman remains have been found below its pavement. Today, it is the social center as well, a favorite meeting place filled with tourists and locals.
4. Santa Maria Novella
Although this Dominican church has the familiar striped façade of inlaid marble worn by several other churches in Florence, here it has been interpreted quite differently, tracing graceful curving designs, imitating windows, and highlighting rows of arches in the lower story.
5. Santa Croce
Behind the geometric marble inlay of its typical Tuscan façade, Santa Croce is both art-filled church and mausoleum for some of Florence’s greatest names. Among its treasures are several landmarks of Renaissance art.