If you have ever considered getting married in Florence, you are not alone. Every year, hundreds of couples from across the globe exchange vow in this magnificent Italian city.
With its medieval yet modern vibes, green landscapes, a world-class wine region, and famous historical sights, there are plenty of unique experiences you will remember forever if you choose Florence as your wedding location.
Florence is the main city in Tuscany, a World Heritage Site, and the heart and soul of the Italian Renaissance. The ancient city is something of a multi-tasker: whatever your desires are, you can fulfill them here and in abundance!
Whether you are a foodie, a history or art buff, a fashion enthusiast, or a nature lover, you’ll find a welcoming reception in “one of the most beautiful cities in the world” – a well-chosen title bestowed by Forbes magazine.
While the array of choices might seem overwhelming, the good news is you have so many wonderful options for your Florence wedding!
Whether you want to relax amidst countryside vineyards or soak up a more metropolitan atmosphere, there are plenty of options to consider.
For civil ceremonies, Palazzo Vecchio could be a great choice. This grandiose palace in the center of Florence is the city’s town hall, overlooking the beautiful Piazza della Signoria. Nestled within the palace are three stunning rooms, Salone dei Cinquecento, Sala di Lorenzo, and the Red Hall, also known as the Sala Rossa.
The advantage of a civil ceremony in Palazzo Vecchio is that the city’s highlights are within walking distance. Just a few steps away you will find wonderful must-see monuments: The Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral, also known as ‘Il Duomo di Firenze’, Ponte Vecchio – the famous bridge symbol of the city, Uffizi Gallery – one of the most renowned museums in the world, Piazza della Reppublica and Piazza Santa Croce.
For religious ceremonies, the city hosts many lovely Roman Catholic churches of all shapes and sizes. From small chapels for a more intimate ceremony to soaring churches for a grander occasion, Florence can definitely accommodate your wedding needs!
However, keep in mind that when planning for a religious ceremony you will need authorization from the local parish priest and from the archdiocese of Florence to wed in a Catholic church. You can read all the requirements in this blog post.
For Protestant weddings, you can choose St. Mark’s English Church and St. James Episcopal Church in the center of Florence, two splendid options for a Protestant wedding.
For Jewish weddings, there is a grand synagogue at Florence’s heart named The Great Synagogue of Florence or Tempio Maggiore, and it is absolutely exquisite!
If you have something less traditional in mind as your wedding location, there are countless options to suit your preferences for your dream Italian wedding.
From Tuscan villas, palaces, castles or hotels, to an authentic Italian farmhouse or restaurant, Florence has it all!
In this blog post, I mentioned some of the most astonishing Tuscan venues for your wedding.
As the cradle of the Renaissance and a proud Italian city with centuries of history, Florence never stops to surprise travelers and even locals. Here are some fun facts you probably didn’t know about Florence:
1. Florence is the Birthplace of the Piano. It was invented here by Bartolomeo Cristofori in the 18th Century. In his times it was called gravicembalo col piano e forte, or “harpsichord that plays soft and loud. In the late XVI century, Opera too was invented in Florence.
2. The world-famous genius Leonardo da Vinci was born in Florence in the lower valley of the Arno.
3. Florence was the first city in Europe to have paved streets back in 1339 when many places worldwide weren’t even founded yet!
4. Between 1865 and 1870, Florence was the Capital city of the United Kingdom of Italy. The Florentine dialect forms the base of Standard Italian and it became the language of culture throughout Italy due to the prestige of the masterpieces by Dante Alighieri, Petrarca, Boccaccio, Machiavelli, and others.
5. The Florence Cathedral is the third largest Duomo in the world, after St.Peter’s Basilica in Rome and St.Paul’s in London.
Most international travelers reach Florence from the airports in Rome or Milan by car (3 hours drive from Rome, 3 hours 40 minutes from Milan).
There are also direct international flights into Pisa Airport, (1 hour 20 minutes by car) west of Florence and to Bologna (1 hour 30 minutes).
Some European airlines, like British Airways, Air France, Lufthansa, Alitalia, Swiss, Australian Airlines, Blue Air, Air Dolomiti, and Vueling serve Florence’s Amerigo Vespucci Airport just 5km (3 miles) northwest of the city center.
I already mentioned some of the most important historical monuments in Florence you can’t miss, like Ponte Vecchio with the secret corridor built by the Medici that connects it to the Pitti palace or Uffizi Gallery that hosts Botticelli’s Venus.
Make sure you visit Piazza Della Signoria and Loggia de’ Lanzi, a beautiful piazza near Palazzo Vecchio that hosts many astonishing statues, like the David replica and the Fountain of Neptune.
For breathtaking views, make sure you climb all 463 steps of the Florence Duomo, all the way to the huge cupola made by Filippo Brunelleschi. From here you will be able to see the whole city and the surroundings.
Another unmissable spot is Piazzale Michelangelo, which offers a magnificent panoramic view of the city from one of the most famous squares in Florence you have probably seen in movies, photos, or postcards.
For your lunch break don’t miss the San Lorenzo market, which with its bars, restaurants, and fresh Italian slow-food style will make you experience the real Florentine feel.
While the center of Florence is a wonderful fit for art lovers, unmissable for everyone who loves history and appreciates beauty, don’t forget to visit the smaller surrounding cities near Florence.
Many are rich with character and breath-taking views. Some wonderful smaller towns within the district of Florence include the following: San Casciano Val di Pesa, Certaldo, Impruneta, Vinci, Tavarnelle Val di Pesa, Montelupo Fiorentino, and Greve in Chianti.
If you love nature and want to opt for a countryside wedding, I wrote some pros and cons of it here.
As throughout Tuscany, you can enjoy art, history, great quality food, and wine in Florence and nearby. Here are some activities you can do:
Do you want to cook the famous bistecca alla Fiorentina – the Florentine steak? It is a large t-bone cut weighing anywhere from 2 to 8 pounds, seasoned with salt and pepper and cooked over-roasted in coal to give it that unique flavor you will surely enjoy if you are a meat person.
What if you are more of a soup person? In this case, would you like to make a Ribollita or Pappa al pomodoro – the local soup made with stale bread, tomatoes, beans, along with seasonal vegetables?
No matter what your favorite Tuscan food is, you can learn to make it in Florence.
If these descriptions made you hungry but you are not in Italy yet, here is an Italian dinner idea from an actual Italian chef, you can start creating right now wherever you are.
Santa Maria Novella pharmacy is probably the oldest still-operating pharmacy in the world.
It was established in 1221 when the monks from the nearby Basilica of Santa Maria Novella began growing herbs to make medicines and balms.
The outstanding quality of their products became widely known, and in the 17th century, it opened to the public. Today the pharmacy still uses the traditional preparation methods and centuries-old monks recipes.
Of course you can’t miss wine tasting experiences in Tuscany! The wines are brought to Florence from the main nearby wine regions, from Chianti to Brunello di Montalcino, from Vernaccia di San Gimignano to Vino nobile di Montepulciano.
No matter if you love white or red wine, these wine tastings will surely surprise you with one of the best wines you have tried in ages!
If you are a wine lover, here you can find a guide of ideal wines for your wedding in Tuscany!
Now that you know some of the amazing choices offered by a destination wedding in Florence, transforming your dream into reality couldn’t be easier!
Don’t hesitate to contact me to find out more. With 20+ years of experience and dozens of happy couples I would love to help you create your perfect wedding!