My roommate, Erin, and I, at the top of the Boboli Gardens
We had two full, nonstop days followed by a full day where we were free to do whatever we wanted, so I really felt like I was able to explore different parts and areas of the city. Like other cities, we started the trip with a walking tour. We explored the Duomo, the de Medici Palace, Michelangelo's David, and the Uffizi Galleries. Soaking in the rich history of this city was one of my favorite parts about seeing it. I'm continually surprised how much I'm enjoying the museum visits. Prior to this trip, the last thing I would've wanted to do when visiting a city is go see art museums, but having the guidance and information to understand what I'm seeing has given me such an appreciation for the works of art here in Europe.
Seeing Michelangelo's David was truly awe-inspiring. It's huge! In fact, size seemed to be a running trend in Florence, because the Duomo is also massive. It literally towers over the rest of the city and to see it up close is amazing.
Friday after exams we visited the Palazzo Pitti, the former residence of the de Medici family. In addition to art galleries, they also have restored the apartments to their original state. It's fascinating to see the luxury and ornate style of the decor.
The Palazzo Pitti, as seen from the Boboli Gardens
Also at the Palazzo Pitti are the Boboli Gardens. They're long and narrow and wind up a (very steep) hill, but the view from the top was more than worth the trek. Crazy, incredibly views of Florence and the Tuscan countryside.
After our exams, everyone was ready for a big night out (and thankfully our day off on Saturday afforded us the opportunity). Most of the group made (another) hike up to Piazzale Michelangelo, a large lookout spot with gorgeous views of the city. We drank wine, enjoyed live music, and watched the sunset. I really never wanted to leave.