As we left Aosta we drove a little more to the south-east and we settled in Empoli. This city lies nicely in between two major tourist destinations, Pisa and Florence. We booked a nice apartment close to the train station and could visit those two cities easily by train.
We already had a feeling about this city that it was not going to be that impressive. As soon as we arrived and walked straight to the tower of Pisa we knew, we were going to be done here in five minutes. The cathedral was immensely crowded and even though you could enter for free, you still needed to pickup a ticket and stand in line. We choose to skip it. Also climbing the leaning tower was twenty five euros each and we thought that was expensive so we skipped that too.
It was fun to see the leaning tower with our own eyes ofcourse, it was very pretty. After a few minutes we decided to leave the area and checkout down town. The city center was very nice and we enjoyed exploring it a bit. We also had a very good pizza which did help! After lunch we decided to take the train back to Empoli and call it a day because the next day was going to be a lot longer.
The next morning we took an early train to Florence. Due covid restrictions we had to book a couple of things in advance. We booked the Uffizi Gallery and the Palazzo Vecchio during the hottest hour of the day so we had the entire morning to explore, so we thought..
First we headed to the large Cathedral with its famous dome. To our slight shock there was a massive queue there. It turned out the church was not yet open and people were already lining up early. We decided to queue up too. In line we saw signs that we needed tickets for some parts of the cathedral on a timeslot. On the website we found out that all the timeslots were fully booked and the only option we had left was this massive queue to see the inside of the church.
After almost one and a half hour of waiting we could finally enter the church and it was a bit of a letdown after having to wait for so long. It hurt slight more when we found out that by entering the church, you were not able to see the underbelly of the dome in its entirety. To see that you needed to have that dome ticket booked, boooo.
Uffizi Gallery and the Vecchio Palace
After wasting pretty much our morning at the cathedral we went to see the museums we had booked. They did not disappoint! Wow, especially the palace was really nice, the painted ceilings were absolutely stunning. We enjoyed wandering through the Uffizi Gallery museum and you could spend the entire day in.
Bye Italy <3
That concluded our roadtrip through Italy which was short but sweet. We love this country and it’s people and are certain we will be back.
Tomorrow we are heading to Greece. First we meet up with our friends in Ancona and from there we join them on a ferry to Patras in Greece. From there we drive 2 hours towards a town about 200 km from Athens where we stay in a nice villa for a little over 2 weeks. We’re looking forward to it!
Palazzo Vecchio: https://museicivicifiorentini.comune.fi.it/en/palazzovecchio/
Uffizi Gallery: https://www.uffizi.it/en/the-uffizi