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Florence in December: 10 must-see experiences for your Christmas weekend

Weekend in Florence: what to do during the holiday season

Florence is the cradle city of the Italian Renaissance, which in December is transformed into an enchanted landscape where the Christmas atmosphere blends harmoniously with the artistic jewels scattered throughout the city.

The combination provides a magical experience that can capture anyone’s attention, thanks to the Christmas decorations and lights that illuminate the hidden corners of the city.

Here are 10 unmissable experiences to enjoy during a Christmas weekend in Florence.

1. Christmas markets in Florence

In addition to an immense artistic and architectural heritage, Florence is also the city of skilled artisans in multiple fields: artists, leather masters and star chefs.The art of tannery in Florence has deep roots that are woven into the very fabric of the city’s history. Since Renaissance times, it has been renowned for its craftsmanship, and tannery has been one of the key activities that helped forge the city’s reputation as an artistic and commercial center.

At the Christmas markets in Florence, it is possible to explore this ancient art and discover typically Florentine products of the highest quality made by the masters of this arty and sophisticated discipline.

2. Visit to the Uffizi Galleries

The Uffizi Galleries are a must-see for art lovers, especially those who appreciate the Italian Renaissance. This renowned museum is located in the heart of the city, in close proximity to the Arno River and the famous Ponte Vecchio.

Among the most famous works on display at the Uffizi are masterpieces by the likes of Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Botticelli and many others. Works such as Botticelli’s “The Birth of Venus” or “La Primavera” are extraordinary examples of Renaissance artistic genius that continue to enchant visitors from around the world.

If you are planning a visit to Florence’s museums in December, we recommend booking tickets in advance to avoid long lines and fully enjoy your stay.

3. Walks along the Arno and the streets of Florence’s historic center with Christmas lights

Walks along the Arno and the streets of Florence’s historic center in December are an enchanting and magical experience. As the river flows silently, the bridges spanning the Arno are illuminated with a twinkling choreography of lights, creating an atmospheric and romantic setting.

The magic of Christmas lights adorns the streets of the historic center, transforming Florence into a true fairy-tale setting. Adorned Christmas trees, glittering decorations and colorful illuminations create a warm and festive atmosphere that envelops visitors in an embrace of magic.

 4. Tuscan cuisine during the holidays

For an extraordinary dining experience in the heart of Christmas in Florence, Borgo San Jacopo Restaurant, located at the Hotel Lungarno, is an excellent choice. Borgo San Jacopo is Florence’s Michelin-starred restaurant renowned for its fine Tuscan cuisine and elegant setting, offering panoramic views of the Arno River.

This Michelin restaurant in Florence represents a culinary gem in the heart of the city. During the Christmas season, Borgo San Jacopo is transformed into an oasis of taste and sophistication, offering Tuscan specialties prepared with skill and presented with a festive flair.

5. Christmas concerts and shows

Florence during the holiday season comes alive with magic and lights that manage to make young and old alike dream. In addition to the displays and markets planned throughout the city, the Tuscan capital also presents a series of exclusive Christmas events to attend to await the arrival of Christmas while having fun.

  • Florence Ice Village is the Christmas village in Piazza Vittorio Veneto in Cascine open from December 8 to January 15. The village features a Ferris wheel and skating rink, as well as numerous Christmas markets.
  • Ars Manualis is the event held in Piazza Santa Maria Novella, consisting of numerous small wooden houses housing skilled Florentine artisans, masters in the arts of goldsmithing, leather goods and carpentry.
  • Finally, the Christmas market in the square of the San Donato center in Novoli is one of the city’s most characteristic markets, also composed of numerous small wooden houses, which know how to give unique emotions thanks to the many typical culinary products, as well as music and entertainment to cheer up at every age.

Staying in a 5- and 4-star hotel in downtown Florence

During a trip, carefully choosing the hotel for your stay is an extremely important element, so that you can fully enjoy your vacation and relax once you return to your suite.

Strategically located in the most evocative spots in the city’s historic heart, all of Florence’s luxury hotels by Lungarno Collection are distinguished not only by their scrupulous attention to furnishings, but also by the unique imprint each one carries.

While the Gallery Hotel Art welcomes guests to a veritable gallery of modern art, Hotel Lungarno captivates them with its timeless elegance. Not to be outdone is the 4-stars hotel Continentale, which incorporates the medieval tower of the Consorti into its structure, offering the chance to admire the evocative panorama of Florence in its Christmas version.

For those seeking the utmost privacy, the Portrait Firenze’s exclusive luxury suites represent a true oasis of privacy. In addition to offering all the comforts and a breathtaking view of the Arno River, it also offers the chance to enjoy an unparalleled culinary experience at its own Caffè dell’Oro restaurant, Contemporary Italian Café overlooking Ponte Vecchio, which blends tradition with culinary innovation to deliver an experience that intoxicates all 5 senses.

Among these options, you are sure to find the perfect Florence hotel to make the most of the Christmas season in Florence.