A Travellerspoint blog


Florence - Day 14 Saturday 9/14

Why Florence?

View Croatia 09/2019 on Cybercsp's travel map.

In Medieval times, Florence was a center of European trade and finance and one of the wealthiest cities of the era. It is considered by many to be the birthplace of the Renaissance, and has been called "the Athens of the Middle Ages." Florence has a famous turbulent political history , which included periods of rule by the powerful Medici family. From 1865 to 1871, Florence served as the capital of the Kingdom of Italy. In addition, UNESCO declared the Historic Center of Florence a World Heritage Site in 1982. The treasure trove of art is beyond compare. We have visited Florence twice before while on organized tours, and wanted to return to be able to chart our own course and approach the city in a "less rushed" manner.

DId I mention that the lure of its leather goods (for this girl) cannot be understated?

There are two trains to Florence that depart daily from the airport, and we were on the 11 AM train. Not every train ride affords such historic views (these are of Rome and sorry that the train windows were filthy).


We are trying something new on this trip. Instead of booking hotels, we are using Vacation Rentals By Owner. Here are some views of our apartment.


After settling in, we went out on a walking junket. Here is our first glimpse of the Duomo as we rounded the corner.


The building is so massive that it is impossible to capture more than parts of it in one frame...so here are pieces of the Duomo for your viewing pleasure.


Across the way is the Baptistry, with the famous doors designed and carved by Ghiberti. They are known as the Gates of Paradise, because Michelangelo reportedly said that he believed that the doors were so magnificent that they might well be found at the entrance to Paradise.


We walked by the Church of Orsanmichele.. This niche was considered to be revolutionary, as the foot of Doubting Thomas extends beyond the base, which was radical for the time. (Thank you Art History 101).


Here are a few scenes as we walked to dinner across the Arno River, in Piazza Santo Spirito.


And a few more from our walk home.


We put a lot of miles on these feet today!

No luggage yet for Tommy.

Photos are tagged Florence and Italy

Posted by Cybercsp 14:04 Archived in Italy Tagged italy florence Comments (0)

Rome - Day 13 Friday 9/13

Farewell, Croatia...and hello, Italia! And sadly, another lost bag.

View Croatia 09/2019 on Cybercsp's travel map.

After breakfast at our hotel, it was time to say goodbye and thank you to Jane and Jay. We had an extraordinary experience with them, and had amazing and enriching experiences in Croatia.

Shortly after we made the decision to visit Croatia, we realized that a quick hop across the Adriatic Sea would land us in Italy...SO, we decided to extend our trip and return to what very well may be our very favorite travel site. We decided to focus our time in Tuscany, specifically Florence.

We headed to the airport in Dubrovnik to catch a 12:35 PM flight from Dubrovnik to Rome. The first flight took us to Zagreb, Croatia's capitol, where we changed planes to Rome, via Split (which, by the way, we flew over on the way to Zagreb...go figure). In Split, while we technically remained on the same plane, we needed to disembark and go through passport control, since we were leaving the country. The "highlight" of this endeavor was standing on the tarmac, in the heat, close to the deafening engines, until everyone had deplaned and we were herded into the terminal.

Arriving in Rome airport at 5 PM, we quickly cleared immigration and headed to baggage claim to collect our luggage. We may need to subtitle this trip the saga of stray luggage This time, it was Tommy's bag that went rogue. Unbelievable. The next flights from Croatia will arrive tomorrow afternoon, when we will be in Florence, so let's add that to the complications....

We are four tired and concerned travelers! Fortunately, we had booked rooms at the Airport Hilton. We had planned this knowing that making the last train to Florence today would have been tight...and who can count on travel going smoothly? Little did we know what a fabulous decision this would be, as we could not leave the airport without filing the paperwork for the missing luggage. We booked both the rooms on our Hilton account, and were all upgraded to the executive floor...which meant that we could have drinks and snacks in the lounge...no need to "go out" to a restaurant!

I have to admit that the bed and bathroom are a luxurious upgrade relative to Croatia (no complaints about any of our accommodations, but beds were low and mattresses firm), and we are hoping for sweet dreams tonight and luggage for Tom SOON.

No photos today, but you can see photos from our past visits to Rome in the Photo Gallery , under Rome

Posted by Cybercsp 23:05 Archived in Italy Tagged italy rome Comments (0)

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