The Basilica di Santo Maria del Fiore (Florence Cathedral) was completed in 1436 and contains the largest brick dome ever constructed. The fresco on the interior of the dome was started in 1568 and completed in 1579, depicting The Last Judgement. The dome is memorizing both inside and out, and serves as the true focal point of Florence’s gorgeous cityscape. We visited the cathedral on Mother’s Day and took a moment to light a candle in remembrance and love of our grandmother’s who have passed on. 

After walking through the Basilica de Santa Maria del Fiore we decided to climb to the top of Giotto’s Campanile, which doubled as an amazing workout. Twenty minutes of walking up a very narrow and steep concrete staircase of over 400 steps, amongst many people coming at you in both directions made for quite an adventure. Climbing to the top is an experience in itself, here is our journey through photos…

 

 
This was one of my favorite experiences during our trip, because once you finally reach the very top of the tower you are rewarded with the most picturesque views of Florence’s landscape, and the gentle Tuscan breeze is a wonderful relief from the sweat you broke while climbing  400 steps. 

Fun Fact: During our trek to the top I was thoroughly entertained by a group of teenage Italian girls who were singing Carly Rae Jepsen’s Call Me Maybe, a song that was also playing on our taxi ride to the hotel. Apparently Italians are just finding out about this dangerously catchy tune…2 1/2 years later. Either way I relived the song through the Italians, as if I was hearing it for the very first time. 

My Question: Why are Italians so snobby about people speaking Italian in Italy, yet they are completely obsessed with American pop music? They are happy to sing in English until they’re blue in the face, but if you ask,” Where is the Colosseum?” They will say,” What?? oh you mean Colloseo?” Cut the act!! You know what we mean. Yes, you’re Italian and we admit that you are the best, you have the shoes, the clothes, the wine, the landscape and the food, is that not enough?

 

 

Piazza della Repubblica
We stayed at Savoy Hotel in Piazza della Repubblica

Travel Tip: When in Italy don’t forget to carry a tote with pants and a shawl or cardigan, this goes for both men and women. I had to learn the hard way many years ago when I visited the Vatican in July with my best friend Evan, we were obviously wearing shorts and tank tops since it was over 100 degrees, and waited in line for a least an hour before finding out that we would not be allowed in without proper attire to cover our bodies. The same goes for any cathedral or holy place in Florence. Always carry a change of clothes! (In my case, heels and a skirt) Or be ready to head back to the hotel or buy something off the street.

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