Founded in 59 BC by the Romans, as early as the Middle Ages Florence begins its economic and political growth. It is, however, between the XIII and XIV century that reached its heyday, becoming the political, artistic and cultural power, capable to influence all Europe. Thanks to the rich and powerful family De Medici, Florence became the dynamic center of the new trends in art, philosophy and politics of that time.
Its artistic and cultural heritage is very valuable, so that the historic center of Florence has become UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1982. All the monuments and buildings of the city were made by the greatest artists of all time: Giotto's Bell Tower, Brunelleschi's Dome, the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore, the Basilica of San Lorenzo, the church of Santa Maria Novella, the church of Santa Croce, the Brancacci Chapel, decorated and painted by artists such as Donatello, Masaccio, Ghirlandaio, Jacopo della Quercia, the della Robbia and Michelangelo, just to mention some of the main artists.The symbol of the city is the Piazza della Signoria, then as now the center of social and political life of the city. In the square you find Palazzo Vecchio, the Loggia dei Lanzi and the Court of Merchandise. Around these buildings you can see some important sculpture works, including Michelangelo's David, the Hercules and Cacus by Bandinelli, the Equestrian Monument of Cosimo I by Giambologna, the Fountain of Neptune by Ammannati and numerous other statues located under the Loggia dei Lanzi.
You should not miss the famous Ponte Vecchio, where remained all the ancient jewelers in Florence. To get to the bridge, you pass from the Uffizi Gallery, and once crossed the bridge, you can continue until you get to the Pitti Palace, within which is located the beautiful Boboli Gardens. The Garden is in fact a veritable open-air museum, filled with antique and Renaissance statues, grottoes and large ornate fountains. Walking among its paths you can go back in time and experience the atmosphere of court life.