Giotto & Gelato Tour 2019

Florence, Italy March 29 – April 5, 2019

$1800 double occupancy- special price covers everything but airfare

Itinerary

Day 1- Friday, March 29 – Arrival

Crossing Ponte alle Grazie
Ponte delle Grazie

I will meet you at the airport and will ferry you back to your lodgings. This may take most of the day.

Rest, relax or stroll as you like.

In the afternoon after everyone has arrived we will meet at my apartment for wine, tea and snacks.

Piazza Santa Trinita Stroll – We will walk over the Ponte Trinita to the Piazza to get the lay of the land and then through the Piazza Signoria and back over the Ponte Vecchio.

Gelato at Sorbettiera  Handmade artisanal gelato and sorbet since 1934.  Literally a hole in the wall, tiny and charming. 16 flavors made fresh daily.

7:oo  Dinner at Angiolino’s,traditional Tuscan cooking in a warm atmosphere.

Day 2 – Saturday, March 30 – Oltrarno

11:00 Brunch at my apartment – I schedule a late meeting time because most people will need to sleep late if they have taken a red eye flight the previous day. I often sleep until noon the day after I arrive. But if there is anyone who wakes early ready to go, we can do something until then others are ready.

1:00 Boboli Gardens & Pitti Palace

Villa Gamberaia

Gelato – La Carraia, many people’s favorite gelato shop with unusual flavors.

Break

7:00 Dinner at Osteria Toscanella

Fabrizio Gori at Osteria Toscanella

Day 3 Sunday, March 31 Fiesole & the Etruscans

9:00  A  15 minute walk to Piazza San Marco  will take us to the #7 bus for a 20 minute spectacular ride up steep hills to the Etruscan city of Fiesole. We will walk in town and just outside, where the views are paradisiacal and the streets charming. I happen to know  the best bakery in Tuscany where we’ll go for a cafe and a dolce.

10:00 Alcedo pastry and Sunday Market in Piazza Mino

Alcedo, my favorite pastry shop in all of Florence

11:00 Etruscan/Roman Ruins and Museum

These ruins date from 30 BC and were only discovered in the late 1800s. The remains of the temple, amphitheater and baths illustrate the precepts of Roman life, “A healthy mind and a healthy body are equally important”,  an idea taken from their predecessors, the admirable Etruscans.

Roman temple atop an Etruscan temple

https://www.visitflorence.com/fiesole/

The small museum has beautiful relics from Roman and Etruscan culture. Though the Etruscans were eventually decimated by the Romans who feared them, they influenced the Romans with their refined aesthetics and liberal philosophy.

Etruscan finger bowl

2:00 Lunch at Vinandro

3:30   Bus back to Florence

Break and/or shopping in San Lorenzo Outdoor Market

Dinner TBA

Day 4 Monday, April 1 – Downtown

10:00 Museo Dell’Opera -This newly renovated museum contains many of the original works from the Duomo and Baptistery, including the magnificent “Gates of Paradise” and Michelangelo’s last Pieta. The new space is airy and beautifully lit and there are well designed interactive videos strategically placed.

2:00 Light lunch at Robiglio’s

3:00 Santa Maria del Fiore aka the Duomo & Baptistery 

The building that put Florence on the map and made Brunelleschi the most famous architect of the Renaissance.

The Baptistery is the still beating heart of Florence, and perhaps its oldest building, begun in the 5th century on top of a Roman temple. Brunelleschi’s Duomo may dwarf the little black and white Baptistery but cannot compare with its powerful and strange geometry. My personal favorite.

Gelato at Perch No? Another time tested gelateria since 1939 using all  natural ingredients….but I think they all do.

Break until dinner

7:30 Dinner at I Raddi

Day 5   Tuesday, April 2 – Palazzi and Castelli

Palazzo Davazati, A medieval townhouse museum
Palazzo Davanzati- Restored Medieval Townhouse
https://www.visitflorence.com/florence-museums/palazzo-davanzati.html


10:00 – Palazzo DavanzatiIt took ten years to lovingly restore this medieval townhouse to it’s 13th century condition. It is unlike anything you have ever seen before because all of the other buildings of that era have been remodeled and repurposed.

1:00  By taxi to Manuela Brofferrio’s Castelvecchio for a picnic lunch in her garden high in the hills of Florence. Manuela and I have been good friends ever since 2005, when we lived in Florence, and she invited all the new, non Italian speakers at our children’s school to join informal conversation group. And she is a very big supporter of the AACDP.

Manuela's Garden
Pranzo at Manuela’s

4:00  Walk through the panoramic Pian di Jiulari to San Miniato– one of the oldest and most elaborately planned gothic basilicas in Florence, with every measurement made according to ancient aesthetic and ritual formulas, on a splendid hilltop overlooking all of Florence. 6:30 Plainsong service at San Miniato

8:00 Dinner at  Il Tranvai

Day 6 – Wednesday, April 3 – The Uffizi

10:00 – 1:00 The Uffizi One of the most famous collections of Renaissance art in the world. We will spend a few hours (or more) at the Ufizzi Gallery and meet at its rooftop cafe at 11:30 for a much needed coffee break.

1:00 Lunch at Il Porcellino

2:00 Gelato at Caribe

Break or shopping tour

4:00 Tea and questions with Fabrizio Gori, artist, restauranteur, 7th generation Florentine, then we ramble with him through Santo Spirito neighborhood and cathedral.

7:30 Dinner at Osteria Toscanella

Day 7 Thursday, April 4

I leave the last day unscheduled so that we can decide together what plces to go and things to see on out last day. And, of course, participants will have sent me their wishes and ideas before the tour starts that I will weave in to our program. That’s why I like to work small and flexible.

Here are some possibilities:

La Divina Pizza (The best Ever)