|Travellers to the MAX|
On they marched, the five girls, nearer and nearer to their next destination. What a shame that they missed their train..... On arrival to Venice central station (an hour early) to depart for Florence, we were extremely annoyed to find out that our train had been delayed for a further 20 minutes. To try and pass the time we sat just at the entrance of the station, trying to soak up some sun and forget about the hunger cramps (prices were steep at the station and if you have learned anything about us - we were ON A BUDGET). 10 minutes before the end of the scheduled delay we entered the station to find out that our train had JUST gone without us - earlier than it was supposed to have left. If you thought we were annoyed before, boy were we angry now. An aggravating hour of heated arguments, long-winded explanations and fruitless demands with the train company followed: we were forced to surrender. The moral of the story is this: Italy is Italy. Expect a certain lack of courtesy and information. Oh, and if there is a 'scheduled' delay, be sure to stay by your train, juuuust in case it decided to leave without you :)
What to do in Florence?
|A thick and silky cup of chocolate paradise|
If you want to stop for long break and enjoy Florence's famously mouth-watering chocolate cake and hot chocolate selection, as Dora and Ella did, visit Caffe Rivoire - on the Piazza della Republica, close to the Uffitzi.
Much to Simone's disappointment, no one in Florence knew what a pizza florentina is.... strange no!?!?!?
Sight-SeeingYou can get a map from you hostel/hotel and the people at reception will no doubt explain to you where you should go. It is possible to do quite of bit of Florence in one day (as Simone, Erin and Myra discovered), though if you really want to see everything and discover the ins-and-outs of the city, you need a good 3 maybe 4 days.
|Sneaky picture :)|
Second comes the Academia - and if you don't know much about art history, one the only things you will find interesting (after long, hot hours spent in the queue, literally) is of course Michelangelo's David. There are countless other sculptures and paintings, all of which are also very beautiful, though they pale in significance next to David. Go early to try and at least avoid some of the queue, otherwise you will find yourself waiting for about 2 hours in the baking heat. At the Academia they don't accept a student card as a discount, but they do accept EU passport holders - so in total entry for Europeans should cost €5.50.
Another chart-topper is The Duomo, Florence's Cathedral. Make sure you are dressed modestly to enter (knees and shoulders covered). Also, the Medici chapels, Uffizi gallery, Ponte vecchio, Piazza dela republica and Piazza dela signoria.
Otherwise, you can also have a bit more of a chilled night in, or perhaps mingle with others on a hostel-organised pub crawl.
For more about nightlife either ask at your hostel/hotel or simply google search! Here comes another warning from Simone - BEWARE OF THE SLEAZE : girl to guy ratio is 1:10.
Summary- Florence is a great place to explore world renowned culture, art and good food
- For accommodation - Plus Florence is highly recommended, and in general hostels are great for meeting other travellers
- For food - there are countless restaurants, cafes and ice-cream shops - you will no doubt find what suits you (you can also ask around at the place in which you are staying)
- Nightlife here is quite good, though you shouldn't feel bad if you take Florence as one of your places during a long trip to stay in and relax in the evenings