Things to Do In & Around Florence – July 2024

The ISI Florence Guide | Listing the Best Picks of the Month to Explore the City at its Best.

The Tuscan-American Association is organizing their annual Fourth of July celebrations in Florence! This year, the party will take place in the Chiostro Grande of Santa Maria Novella church (entrance from Piazza Santa Maria Novella, 18) starting from 7:00pm and will involve food, drinks, live music and dancing.

When: Sunday, July 7 – all day
Take advantage of free entrance to a selection of museums:
Galleria degli Uffizi, Galleria dell’Accademia, Museo delle Cappelle Medicee, Palazzo Pitti, Museo Nazionale del Bargello, Palazzo Davanzati, Museo Archeologico Nazionale, Casa Martelli, Museo di Orsanmichele, Villa Medicea di Castello, Villa il Ventaglio, Villa Corsini, Villa Medicea della Petraia.

The exhibition is a fascinating and immersive look at a dark and often overlooked aspect of Japanese culture. It is sure to appeal to anyone interested in Japanese folklore & art.
When: Open Mon to Fri, 10:00am – 7:00pm & Weekends 11:00am – 8:00pm
Where: Museo degli Innocenti, Piazza Santissima Annunziata
Price: Tickets starting at €16.50

The seventh edition of the “All Star Game” will be held at Piazzale Michelangelo! During the week, teams representing the historic colors of Florence – Azzurri, Bianchi, Rossi, and Verdi – will compete in basketball and beach volley tournaments.
From July 15 to July 21 – 9:30pm
Where: Piazzale Michelangelo
Free Entrance

Vocal Blue Trains are a vocal group composed of 34 vocalists and musicians. Their unique, multifaceted sound combines a choral imprint of gospel and traditional polyphony with modern beats of electronic and ambient house music. This year they take the stage in the beautiful Roman theater in Fiesole.
Sunday, July 21 – 9:30pm
Where: Teatro Romano di Fiesole
Price: Tickets €16.50

Candlelight concerts go beyond the traditional concert format: as the spectators enjoy the music, they are enveloped in the warm light of candles in the beautiful Roman theater in Fiesole. The result is a breath-taking and utterly unique event.
Saturday, July 27 – 9:00pm
Where: Teatro Romano di Fiesole
Price: Tickets starting at €33.00

The exhibition explores the work of one of the masters of Italian photography. The exhibition also includes a new section showcasing Jodice’s images of Michelangelo’s sculptures, which are emerging from the photographer’s archives for the first time in thirty years.
When: Open Tue to Sun, 10:00am – 8:00pm
Where: Villa Bardini – Costa San Giorgio, 2
Tickets €10.00


The museum contains over 36,000 artifacts, including a vast collection of armour from Eastern and Western civilizations. The villa, which was once Stibbert’s home, has 57 rooms that exhibit all of his collections from around the world. Most of the walls are covered in leather and tapestries and the rooms are filled with artifacts.
Paintings are displayed throughout every room, including still lifes and portraits. There is also valuable furniture, porcelains, Tuscan crucifixes, Etruscan artifacts, and an outfit worn by Napoleon I of France.

Open Mon to Wed 10:00am – 2:00pm;
Fri to Sun 10:00am – 6:00pm
Via Federigo Stibbert, 26
Tickets: €10.00


Open seven days a week, from 8.30 in the morning to the end of each night’s film, Giunti Odeon is the new and improved face of the old Odeon cinema. Built over 100 years ago, Odeon has been a meeting point for cinephiles for over a century. Today, it maintains its mission as a cinema, with the addition of a bookshop, where bookshelves occupy the entire ground floor. One screen guarantees night-time movie projections, while a LED wall ensures daytime entertainment in Italian and English. Explore the beautiful architecture while browsing English and Italian books or stay until late and catch the latest movie in its original language with Italian subtitles

Summers in Florence can get very hot. That’s why we always suggest cooling off in one of Florence’s many public swimming pool. If the sea is not for you, you can find everything you need to relax and sunbathe right in the city.

PISCINA IL POGGETTO – Via Michele Mercati, 24
Open Everyday 10:00am – 7:00pm
Daily ticket: €9.00 on weekdays and €12.00 on weekends. Swimming cap required.

PISCINA LE PAVONIERE – Viale della Catena, 2
Open Mon to Fri 9:30am – 7:30pm; Sat & Sun 9:00am – 7:30pm
Daily ticket: €9.00 on weekdays and €12.00 on weekends. Swimming cap required.

PISCINA COSTOLI – Piazzale Berlinguer, 2
Open Mon 2:00pm – 6:00pm (reduced price); Tue to Fri 10:00am – 6:00pm; Sat & Sun 10:00am – 7:00pm
Daily ticket: €8.00 on weekdays and €9.00 on weekends. Swimming cap required.

HIDRON WATER PARK – Via di Gramignano (Campi Bisenzio)
Small waterpark in the neighboring town of Campi Bisenzio. You can get there by taking bus 30 from Via delle Porte Nuove.
Open Everyday 9:00am – 6:30pm
Daily ticket: €15.00 Swimming cap required.

ASMANA WELLNESS CENTER – Via Salvator Allende, 10 (Campi Bisenzio)
Enjoy a relaxing day in a spa with thermal water and sauna! You can book massages and treatments.
Open Mon to Thu 10:00am – midnight, Fri 10:00am – 1:00am, Sat 9:00am – 1:00am & Sun 9:00am – midnight.
Daily ticket: €43.00 on weekdays and €49.00 on weekends.

Many locals enjoy summer evenings along the river, eating and meeting with friends for a drink in one of the many restaurants, bars and food trucks that open their doors from the end of May to September. Just remember to bring your bug repellent as there are a great number of hungry mosquitoes near to the water!

LA TORAIA – Lungarno del Tempio
Open Everyday 6:00pm – 11:45pm

IL MOLO FIRENZE – Lungarno Cristoforo Colombo
Open Everyday 5:00pm – 1:00am

GIARDINO ARTE CULTURA – Via Vittorio Emanuele II, 4
Open Everyday 10:00am – midnight

SANTAROSA BISTROT – Lungarno di Santa Rosa
Open Mon to Fri 8:00am – midnight; Sat & Sun 10:00am – midnight

HABANA 500 & FIORINO SULL’ARNO – Lungarno Pecori Giraldi
Open Everyday 12:30pm – midnight


A historical rival of Florence, Siena is full of art and artisanal work, as well as being known world-wide for its Palio (horserace), that takes place in July and August. The city is divided into “contrade” to this day, each having a different symbol and colours. The city is charming and can be visited easily in a day.
Getting there: There are frequent regional trains from Florence SMN station to Siena throughout the day (about 1.5 hr ride + 1 mile by foot to the city center).


Arezzo, located 80km from Florence, isn’t a popular tourist destination, despite being one of the many gems in the Tuscan hills. The history, culture, and art, not to mention the beauty of its architecture and beautiful scenic views, make Arezzo one of Italy’s best-kept secrets!
Getting there: Take a Regionale Veloce (about 1hr) or Regionale train (about 1.5 hr.) from Florence SMN station to Arezzo. There are many trains running throughout the day.


Lucca is a charming old city with a rich history, beautiful churches and Renais-sance-era city walls that are almost perfectly intact to this day. We suggest you take a stroll on the walls to have a great view of the city, as well as a visit to Torre Giunigi (Giunigi Tower) and the garden situated on the top. Inside the city you must see Piazza Anfiteatro, built on the ruins of the Roman amphitheatre.
Getting there:There are frequent regional trains from Florence SMN station to Lucca throughout the day (about 1.5 hr. ride)


By far the easiest seaside location to reach, Viareggio offers sandy beaches equipped with everything you might need but also long stretches of so-called “free beach” where you can sunbathe without paying for a sun umbrella and deck chairs. Along the seafront you can find restaurants and shops to have a quick bite for lunch.
Getting there: Viareggio is easy to reach with frequent regional trains from Firenze S.M.N.


Castiglioncello is beloved both by Tuscans and tourists, it is easy to reach and offers beautiful beaches and a lively atmosphere. This seaside town has everything you need for a lovely day or weekend trip.
Getting there: Castiglioncello is easy to reach from Firenze S.M.N.: book the train on Trenitalia and with just one train change in Pisa you’ll be there in no time!


Nestled in the picturesque Tuscan Archipelago, the island offers an unforgettable experience. While the journey from Florence is a little longer than the other locations, it is well worth it as Elba offers some of the most beautiful sights in Tuscany, with clear water and white rocky beaches.
Getting there: Getting to Elba is not the easiest as you will need to get the train from Firenze S.M.N. to Piombino Marittima and then get the ferry, which will take you to the island.
There are many beautiful beaches all over the island that can be reached by bus. We recommend: Spiaggia delle Ghiaie, Spiaggia di Padulella, Spiaggia di Sansone, Marina di Campo, Spiaggia di Cavoli, Fetovaia, and Procchio.


Panzanella is a salad of stale bread and vegetables, a traditional Tuscan dish particularly suitable for summer.
Recipe: 200 g stale white Tuscan bread (unsalted) – 1 cucumber 200 g coppery tomatoes – 1 Tropea onion 1 liter water – 40 g apple vinegar – Olive oil, basil, salt, and pepper.

To prepare the Panzanella, cut the bread into coarse pieces and place in a large bowl. Add water (some recipes also add vinegar at this stage), just enough to wet it and leave it to soak for 20-30 minutes. Meanwhile, peel the vegetables and cut the onion into slices, the cucumber and the tomato into chunks. Then, squeeze the bread well with your hands, it should not be too wet. Combine the tomatoes, cucumber and onion in a large salad bowl. Add the pieces of bread and the basil leaves, chopped with your hands. Season with plenty of oil, vinegar, salt and a sprinkle of pepper. Mix well and let the panzanella rest for a couple of hours before serving.


One of the symbolic recipes of Tuscan cuisine, made with leftover Tuscan “stale” bread and beautiful red and ripe tomatoes. A first course that can be enjoyed both hot and at room temperature.
Recipe: 150 g stale white Tuscan bread (unsalted) – 1 garlic clove 250 g ripe tomatoes – 1 Tropea onion – ½ liter vegetable broth – Olive oil, basil, salt, and pepper.

To prepare the Pappa al Pomodoro, peel the tomatoes and chop them coarsely. In a saucepan heat the extra virgin olive oil with a clove of garlic over medium heat for about 2 minutes. Remove the garlic and add the tomatoes. Season with salt and pepper, cook for a few minutes and cover with a lid. Meanwhile, cut the bread into chunks and put in a bowl, cover with boiling broth until the crust has softened. Add the bread in the saucepan with the tomato, stir constantly, until the bread is completely undone. If the Pappa gets too dry, add some broth a little at a time. Season with salt and pepper and add the fresh basil leaves. Let the Pappa al Pomodoro rest and garnish it with fresh basil and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.