Don’t know what to do in Florence during the Christmas season? Well, there’s plenty going on during the holidays!
The Christmas spirit in Florence starts in early December. You will instantly want to walk the streets of the city to enjoy the festive atmosphere with the sparkling decorations and light displays. You won’t want to miss the decorations of the palace La Rinascente in Piazza della Repubblica, the queen of Christmas! In recent years it has surprised us all with its magnificent facade covered with white lights that simulate a cascade of diamonds, which has made it one of the most photographed places in Florence during the holidays.
In addition, all museums and exhibitions are generally open daily during the holidays, except on December 25 and January 1.
Below we provide you with advice on what to do or see during the Christmas holidays.
FEAST OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION
December 8, 2014
The countdown to Christmas starts in Italy on December 8, when the traditional decorative lighting along the city streets and squares are officially turn on!
This day is also a National holiday in celebration of the Immaculate Conception, which, according to the teaching of the Catholic Church, is the solemn belief in the Blessed Virgin Mary.
Many families use this celebration day to decorate their homes, visit local Christmas markets, and go shopping.
In Florence’s historic center, namely, in the Piazza del Duomo, a large Christmas tree is decorated and lighted on this day during a public ceremony. To the left of the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore you will find the Nativity scene, known as Presepe, re-created with life-size statues made in terracotta and produced by Tuscan artisans.
Festivities from the end of November until December 2014
Many markets take place during Christmas time, where you will find various kinds of gifts such as furnishings, food, and wine.
First of all, we have the famous Weihnachtsmarkt at Piazza Santa Croce.
This German Christmas market lasts from the end of November until the last days leading up to Christmas. Just like a nordic market, the stands are set up in rustic wooden stalls, where you will find decorations for Christmas trees and homes, and Christmas cakes such as Stollen accompanied by the Glühwein (mulled wine), or wurst and sauerkraut. From November 28.
In Piazza Santissima Annunziata, on December 7 and 8, will be Fierucola dell’Immacolata, a traditional market with typical products and local crafts.
For the first time at Fortezza da Basso, Natale in Fortezza (Christmas in Fortezza), a market totally dedicated to Christmas. It exhibits objects and gift items relating to Christmas, and has a children’s area, workshops, and other entertainment. And of course, Santa Claus will be present. From December 11 until December 14. Visiting hours: 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Ticket price: € 5.
For those who are looking for the perfect Christmas gift, there are many other occasions: you will find many smaller Christmas markets in the various neighborhoods of the historic center, such as Le Murate Caffé, where there will be young craftsmen and artisans present who use recycled materials to make everyday objects and gifts. From December 7 until December 24.
December 24, 2014
If you are planning to spend Christmas in Florence, be sure to add a concert or opera to your itinerary. Teatro Verdi will host one of the most beloved concerts in the city, the Orchestra della Toscana, conducted by the master Daniele Rustioni with music by Beethoven, Brahms, and Dvorak. On Wednesday, December 24, at 5 p.m. Ticket price: € 20/17.
FLORENCE WINTER PARK
November 7, 2014 to March 1, 2015
Attention all snow lovers! There is a new snow and ice attraction in the the city! This playground for winter sports in the park near the Obihall has a skating rink and snowtubing along the Arno River. It is a place where one can not only ski, skate, and slide, but also choose among a wide selection of bars, restaurants, kiosks, and children’s entertainment. Open daily. Ticket price: € 10/6/5.
FLORENCE INFERNO TOURS
One of the most special things to do during the holidays is to joine one of our Florence Inferno Tours!
The Florence Inferno Tour organized by Florence Inferno and ADAGIO con BRIO. A full-day Florence walking tour inspired by Dan Brown’s latest novel Inferno. Enter some of the most amazing, mysterious, and famous places in Florence. The tour runs every day – from December 20 until December 31- starting at 9.15 a.m. Tour price: € 75 per person.
Info and booking: http://www.florenceinferno.com/guided-tour/
Uffizi & Accademia Tour in One Day organized by Florence Inferno and ADAGIO con BRIO. A fascinating walking tour in the afternoon to avoid the crowds of the two most famous museums in Florence: the Uffizi Gallery and the Accademia Gallery. An experienced guide fluent in the English language will ensure that you experience the best that each gallery has to offer by providing an historical and artistic path among each of its astonishing masterpieces. The tour runs on December 24, 26, 27, 28, 30, 31. Starting at 2 p.m. Tour price: € 75 per person.
Info and booking: http://www.florenceinferno.com/uffizi-and-accademia-tour/
Sunset Trip from Florence to Fiesole in the Tuscan Hills organised by Florence Inferno and ADAGIO con BRIO. A sunset trip from Florence to Fiesole, a small village situated in the hills of Tuscany. It is from this settlement that the City of Florence seems to have originated. Enjoy scenic routes, see breathtaking panoramas, visit Fiesole’s Abbey and Roman Amphitheatre, and taste delicious local wine and food. The tour runs every day – from December 24 until December 31. Starting at 4:30 p.m. Tour price: € 45 per person.
Info and booking: http://www.florenceinferno.com/day-trip-to-fiesole/
The Florence Photography Adventure Tour organized by Florence Inferno and ADAGIO con BRIO. Discover Florence with your camera and with a professional photography teacher and a great Florentine guide at your side. Photography workshop & tour: 1-hour class + lunch break + 4-hour photography tour. The tour runs every day, except on December 9, 11 and 25, starting at 12 p.m. Tour price: € 139 per person.
Info and booking: http://www.florenceinferno.com/photography-workshop/
We hope you have fun!