Tuesday, the 20th, was our first full day in Florence and we went for a wander to get our bearings.
Although Florence is a maze of narrow streets these suddenly open out into large piazzas allowing you to actually stand back and see the monumental architecture, not always possible in other places! Once you get your bearings navigating between the churches and palaces is not too difficult.
Without our Firenze Card at this point we decided to head for the free stuff, of which there is not a lot. The most obvious is the Piazzale Michaelangelo on the south bank of the river offering spectacular views across the city. There is also the Abbey of San Minato al Monte above the Piazzale. The facade is impressive but the interior not so much. We also followed a recommendation for a restaurant and had dinner in the Trattoria La Casalinga – the meals were great and the fillet steak was excellent!
So with an better idea of what to see and where to see it we decided to take Wednesday and Thursday to see some of the countryside around Florence and then dedicate the weekend to seeing the city itself.