Ready for another day in Italy? Today, I’m sharing a quick recap of our time spent in Florence. Florence is a city I will never tire of. Sadly, we only had two days there this trip. Click through for a peek at our charming hotel, favorite food stops, and how we celebrated our anniversary with a little shopping.
Once arriving in Florence, we immediately dropped our bags at Hotel Pendini (pictured below). This charming historic hotel is filled with antiques, old photos, and the location can’t be beat. It overlooks Piazza della Repubblica and is very central, making it the ideal location for walking and exploring the city.
Our first matter of business? A highly anticipated lunch… we made our way to wait in line for sandwiches at All’ Antico Vinaoio. This place has certainly gained popularity over the years with over 30k five-star reviews. It’s just a little panini shop, and the line for food is a mile long… but it goes quickly. Know what you what before you get to the counter because it’s a little chaotic! We took our giant sandwiches to-go and enjoyed lunch with a view overlooking the city.
Next we walked over to my old apartment to see how things had changed, which oddly have not. It was fun to reminisce and share my old daily walk and favorite spots with Emmett. We then crossed the Arno to get my favorite gelato in the city, from Gelataria La Carraia. It is (and remains) the best gelato I’ve ever had. We went back a few times during the course of our two-day stay in Florence…
After that, it was onto leather shopping. Emmett has been wanting a nice leather jacket for quite some time now. I decided for our anniversary, I was going to gift him one. Florence is known for their leather markets. We popped into Ben Heart (a very cool and reputable company) and he immediately found one he liked.
After more leisurely strolling and another spritz, it was back to our hotel to get cleaned up for dinner. We celebrated our anniversary dinner at Irene, which was outstanding! We made friends with another American couple seated next to us (also celebrating their anniversary), had some delicious tiramisu, gelato, and cocktails, then made our way back to our hotel… just across the piazza.
Our next day in beautiful Florence began with breakfast at our hotel, immediately followed by hours browsing at one of my favorite art galleries in the world, Uffizzi. The building itself is stunning, but the artwork housed inside is magnificent. You can see works from all the Renaissance greats. I used to spend hours here sketching and learning.
I played gallery guide for Emmett, then we headed to a favorite lunch spot…. Conquinarius. The pear ravioli, pictured below, is not to be missed! After some local rosé, plenty of good food, and great conversation, we meandered along to do some shopping.
We ducked into one of my favorite paper & stationery shops in Florence, Il Papiro. We bought some gorgeous artwork to bring home with us, that I recently installed in our kitchen.
Next, Emmett surprised me with my own leather anniversary gift (our unintentional theme this year, I suppose). We headed to Cellerini, where I was able to customize or choose a local handbag. I’m not one to splurge on fashion, but bags are my weakness. This was such a fun experience! It’s kind a well-kept secret in Florence… once arriving at two unmarked doors, we were buzzed into the entry and taken to the second floor. I knew exactly what bag I wanted (it’s the black one in the lower left corner)! It’s practical, timeless, very high quality, handmade by local artisans, and one that I’ll keep, carry, and cherish forever.
After that, it was time for more gelato, a peek at Santa Croce, and another spritz… when in Italy, you must eat & drink your way through the city!
We ended our time in Florence with dinner, drinks, & gelato while listening to the live orchestra (I love the city at night), ready to move along to the Amalfi coast… that post is coming tomorrow!
Have a wonderful day! I hope you’re enjoying this little travel series. It has certainly been fun to sort through our photos and relive our anniversary trip.
PeggiSeptember 22, 2022 at 5:46 am
Good morning! What a perfect couple of days! Art galleries, shopping and meandering through the city from scrumptious meal to scrumptious meal! (That pear ravioli?!) Add a side of reminiscing, and Florence truly sounds magical. As I’m vicariously enjoying your trip, a question occurred to me. How do you usually document a special vacation? This wonderful travel journal will now live on the blog, but what about other adventures? Are photos and videos enough? Is there a modern alternative to a scrapbook? Do people just have much better memories than me? (Likely) Maybe keeping the exact name of each restaurant or store in mind isn’t a priority…Ha. But I am curious, especially since you are such inveterate explorers. I would definitely be interested in any tips! I can’t wait to hear about Amalfi! Thanks for sharing! (Also, can you believe it’s Thursday?) 💜
SarahSeptember 22, 2022 at 5:48 pm
That’s my ideal travel…. food, art, shopping, taking it all in! What a fun trip, indeed. I’m going to try to replicate that pear ravioli hear at home- it was my favorite meal from the trip. I usually keep a folder of our images and notes on my hard drive. Sometimes I’ll turn them into photo books to keep on our shelf or coffee table- which is a fun way to reminisce. I also keep notes on my phone (in the notes app)… I have a travel folder separated by location, and I’ll write down or journal noteworthy stops we made (food, shopping, places to see, etc). It’s a convenient way to remember where we’ve been or where we’re planning to go during a trip. Amalfi was SO fun… I’m writing the post right now :) Hope you had an amazing day! xo
LaurenSeptember 22, 2022 at 8:42 am
Wow wow wow! Stunning pictures of the architecture, design and artwork. You’re fulfilling my curiosity about all things Italy and all I can say is it looks magical. I love your unintended themed gifts to each other and how special that you got to bring home personal pieces to cherish and use for years to come. It goes without being said that pasta and gelato are the most popular fair to consume, and I hadn’t thought about paninis- they look delightful. What other food recommendations do you have? I’m a sucker for food touring through new places so all of the eats pique my interest. I’ll be looking forward to tomorrow’s post about the Amalfi Coast- that’s my number one Italian destination. We’re enjoying cooler weather here- low 80’s during the day with nice crisp mornings and evenings. The electricians came yesterday and wired our ceiling fan and swapped the chandelier in the front room. Paint has been selected and purchased and I’ll be starting that process this weekend. It’s getting exciting over here! Have a great one! Xo
SarahSeptember 22, 2022 at 6:50 pm
Thanks, Lauren! It was definitely a trip to remember. We were both really excited about our leather gifts. Emmett wore his jacket for the first time today- it was chilly this morning :) All of the food is good in Italy… other than the staples (pizza, pasta, paninis, gelato, etc) Emmett had a lot of Florentine beef, prosciutto, risotto, polenta, plenty of seafood, and you can also find more mediterranean selections down south! The Amalfi coast is wonderful- I’m writing that post right now. I wish I could teleport back. ha! I’m glad you’re enjoying cooler weather and crisp mornings! It definitely feels like fall here. Yay for your ceiling fan / lighting swap- it sounds like you’re making awesome progress in the front room! I can’t wait to hear all about it and see the pain you landed on. xo
Danna FSeptember 22, 2022 at 11:48 am
My mouth is watering with the ravioli….yum! The gelato looks delish too. You will cherish the bag and coat for a long time because of the memories you have acquiring it..love the sentimental gifts.
Speaking of the evening life in Italy, I remember during the beginning of C in 2020, people would open windows and playing instruments and sing. I thought that was such magical thing and a wonderful way to be together without the contact.
Enjoy all the time and effort you put into sharing your trip with us. Have a great day!
SarahSeptember 22, 2022 at 6:53 pm
Most definitely, Danna! Such special treasures to bring home… I love remembering our travels and celebrating momentous occasions in that way. Emmett wore his jacket for the first time today- it was chilly this morning! Italians are so warm hearted and wonderful- I also loved seeing those videos during quarantine. I hope you’re having a good week :)
colleenSeptember 22, 2022 at 12:34 pm
Wow Sarah, all your pics are so dreamy, absolutely stunning. I love the eating and drinking your way through the city with some shopping mixed in, my kind of vacay ;) The city looks beautiful and you captured it perfectly. Looks like an amazing spot for anniversary celebration and how wonderful to meet another couple seated right next to you also in anniversary celebration mode. It does look like a fantastic city to commemorate such a joyous occasion. Thanks so much for sharing 🥂
Its been an incredibly busy summer and I can’t believe Fall has arrived. We spent 5 weeks this summer at the cottage and it was fantastic! Getting lots done but it feels like such a small dent in the amount of projects required to nurse this sweet cottage back to life. Andrew and I consider it a 5 year project, but I suspect there will always be a project on the go and it may never feel done. We love it though, it’s so serene and magical place for us and it completely calms and soothes us. When our backs aren’t aching, LOL. We did lots of hiking with Lorrie, which is always great for the buns with all the mountain terrain 😀 We closed it this past weekend as we won’t be able to get back before winter. I hope your day is going wonderfully and you are taking it easy. I’ll be back tomorrow for more details of your splendid trip! xoxo
SarahSeptember 22, 2022 at 6:58 pm
Thanks, Colleen! That’s my kind of vacay, too :) Good food and good shopping… what’s not to love?! Ha! I’m glad you got to spend 5 weeks at the cottage. You were able to tackle so much! It will be fun to get back to it after winter. 5 years sounds like the perfect plan. Hiking with Lorrie also sounds like fun… once we’re recovered, I’m sure our dogs would appreciate some good hiking- it has been too long. My buns could also use it after all of that Italian food. Haha! Have a good night, Colleen! xo