Posts Tagged ‘Chiesa del Carmine’

Life in Florence – the tropical days of August

augusztus 12, 2013

Emilia changed my life.Emilia

To have a bicycle in Florence is a MUST. and you do not understand it till you do not own one.

This is what happened to me. When

I first saw Emilia,I was sure that a new page of my life in Florence

is opening up.

So having Emilia, it’s easy to get around and what is more, having friends with bikes can multiple the fun of getting lost in the city 🙂 And not only!!! Other advantages of having a bike:

– keeps you fit while cycling around

-you generate a nice breeze when you go fast that helps in these tropical days

-you can put your bag/cardigan/shopping/books in the basket, larger items and friends on the back (portapacchi)

-smaller then a car and easier to park

-can go in one way streets/ can cross red lights / can go in dead ends and can get out 🙂

and many many more advantages…


Dante’s INFERNO at Piazza Santa Croce

Roberto Benigni (the famous Tuscan actor from the film La vita é bella – Life is beautiful) every summer recites on the Santa Croce square parts of Dante’s  Divine Comedy.

Dante was from Florence and actually on the square there is a massive statue of him that makes the performance even more impressive. This year (most probably because of  the new Dan Brown book ) the Inferno (Hell) was on play. We went to the opening evening, 20th July and on the 5th August we watched it from the window of a friend who lives at Via Torta next to the square. If you speak Italian this is a MUST summer event in Florence 🙂

Torre San Niccoló

tour of 30 min from 17 – 19,30, 3 euro (discounts for students, free for guides) tel. (comune di Fi) 0552768224

Another amazing experience, the visit of one of the still existing towers from the 74 towers that were built along the old city walls of 8 km. Ruling the area with the same name, from the San Niccoló tower we had an amazing view on the sunset.sunset best

The guide told us the stories about the city walls, the tower houses around the city, about San Niccoló (Santa Klaus) and the legend around the balls we usually put on the Christmas trees. The stariways built behind the tower by Giuseppe Poggi (1965) take us up to Piazzale Michelangelo.

And of course the Easy Living bar 🙂 with the Spiaggetta small sandy beach next to the ARno river.

Summer evening must Dos at Easy :

– Frittura di pesce con patatine e mayonnese (=fried seafood with chips and mayonnese)

-Yoga on the little sandy beach

-Aperitivo, which is free with your drink

10 August – Saturday – The night of San Lorenzo and the shooting stars

Another amazing day in Florence, starting with breakfast at sunrise 🙂 with Justyna at Santa Croce and then onto the little town of Puccini: LUCCA. City visit, churches, cathedrals, shops, Puccini, Torre Guinigi, Ilaria Carletto, amphitheatre square, city walls, Napolean square and then onto Viareggio and the sea.

The are of Viareggio in general is famous for the night-life and not for the sea… so we needed some local advice to find among the forest and bushes the long free-beach where people build up their own tents and which is an  infrastructure and jelly fish free zone 🙂


Big waves and a nice leisurely beach day with the girlies finishing with an Aperitivo at the Carpe diem bar before heading back to Florence to be on time for the shooting stars.


We were watching the stars from the terrace, I caught 5 before falling asleep  and having an amazing nice sleep outside, finally not in the flat where it is average 67 degrees celsius in the night. What a nice day!!! 🙂

11 August – The cars, the bikes, Justyna and me

A day of studies, full immersion in the ‘200 and Romanesque period of Florence together with Coppo di Marcovaldo, Cimabue and all the others. In the evening I had the brilliant idea to go to check the cars (mine haven’t been used for weeks). Justyna came with me and without a map it took me a bit to recognize where they were parked around the Cascine park.

Once got to the cars, checked them, all ok, moved them around the parking area then I took off the battery of my car and closed its door. Then I realized to have the car key, my phone, my bag and everything else inside the car, which was shut. NO panic – Instead of destroying the car door, we started to plan with Justyna to go home and climb up to the terrace to enter the flat through the window to get the spare keys for the car. Sounded like a plan, we got back to the bicycles when I realized to have the house keys in the basket of my bike 🙂 Lucky me!!! So we cycled home, had a drink and got back to the car with the spare keys.

After the adventure we well deserved the fried sea food with coke at Easy Living 😀

12 August, Monday and a new week 🙂

Only 4 days left and Edina and Beata are coming to visit me… I am soooo excited!! 🙂

This morning I decided to try to get hold of the labirynth of opening hours of the churches and visit the ones connected to my studies about ‘200 and Romanesque.

I got on Emilia and went to check the opening hours of Battistero of San Giovanni and the complex of the Duomo. Actually a combo ticket is 10 euro for all 5 monuments and ticket is valid for 6 days,(Campanile, Cupola, Battistero, Museum of the Duomo, Santa Reparata) this is what the lady said when I asked her at the entrance instead of doing hte 50 m queue for the ticket office. I still do not understand who are these unstoppable and fanatic tourists who want to visit Florence even when it is crazily tropical desert type HOT!!!???

Then onto the street Borgo Santissimi Apostoli to try to find the church with the same name, even if maps do not show these small churches. And yess!! a very helpful local person showed me the little courtyard called Limbo square and the little church with paintings from the byzantine period of Florence. Limbo is the place where the kids who are not baptized stay after they die. with this intro, the church has a strange atmosphere and they have leaflets and signs asking you to come and meditate among the walls of the church.

Next stop Oltrarno (= on the other side of the river)

San Frediano in Cestello church

and again found it closed. Open from 17-18:30…

So I continued with Emilia to the church of Santa Maria del Carmine and the Capella BrancacciCapella Brancacci

Piazza del Carmine 14 Tel. 0552382195

Amazing Church which was burnt down in 1771 and rebuilt in Baroque style – that is not typical for Florence.

The most famous Brancacci Chapel can be visited all they long and free for guides 🙂 so I spent some time around the cloister and the paintings from Masaccio, Masolino and Filippino Lippi.