Confession: I usually don’t like organized tours. I’m more of an explore-on-my-own type of traveler. (Ironically, my itinerary-loving engineer husband is the complete opposite). Maybe I just don’t like having too strict of a schedule. But when I was planning my first trip to Italy, I knew I needed some guidance. There are a lot of tour companies big and small, so do you choose the right one? So after a little research I came across great reviews for Walks of Italy and quickly reserved a spot.
After arriving in Rome, we headed to Florence for a three days stay. It was our first day in Florence and I loved the idea of a casual get-to-know the town type of tour, so I chose the Welcome to Florence Walking Tour. We met the rest of the group, about 10-15 people, at the scheduled meeting place and the tour got underway. Finding the meeting point near the Duomo was a breeze, and we were each given headphones and information on the itinerary. Our host was personable and fun and really knew the ins and outs of the city. The tour was about two hours long, taking us through neighborhoods like Santa Croce, across the Ponte Vecchio and through various piazzas. I loved the little facts and tidbits he shared, which I would have never known on my own, like where Michelangelo is buried. He was great at answering questions and gave us insider tips like a great market, good shopping street or the best restaurants to try. The night closed out with a final stop at Gelateria dei Neri, arguably the best gelato spot in Firenze. I think I can speak for everyone on the trip and say that it was the best part!
On our second day in Florence, we embarked on a mission to see the city’s Renaissance masterpieces. I read that an organized tour was our best bet for easy, stress-free entrance into museums, so I booked tickets for the Accademia Gallery & Uffizi Tour. Expedited entry got us in before the crowds, which made it much easier to see the most popular pieces. Our tour guide was also a great benefit once again, sharing knowledge about the museum and its art that I would have never known. Overall I was surprised at how much I enjoyed the tours!
Traveling to Italy? Check out all the tours that Walks of Italy has to offer here.