Galleria Dell’ Accademia

Today we had a leisurely start, sleeping in a bit then heading downstairs for breakfast. Our biggest task there was trying to figure out the coffee / espresso machines to get our morning dose of caffeine.

Prior to travelling to Italy I had pre booked a number of entry tickets to essentially “skip the line”. Plus I had arranged a private guide for Florence, as I had for Rome. Actually, it was my Rome guru, Tosca, who recommended Riccardo. As luck would have it he recently tripped over his cat giving him a bad fall and unable to guide us. Fortunately, many of the individual, older guides all know each other and we were handed over to Marco. We couldn’t have done better. What a background! He has taught at the University level, taught at the Academy, an artist and has acted as a guide for many years.

We began by walking over to the Accademia and entering with no problem, thanks to pre booking and Marco knowing how to exchange the paperwork for the appropriate tickets. The main attraction, of course, is Michaelangelo’s David. But we could also view all of his pieces on which he made preliminary sculptures, which were only partially carved. It was a wonderful way to view the process he had to “release” the “prisoner” inside the marble block. There was also another salon that had hundreds of gesso models by Bartollini. Fascinating to see how he had transferred the measurements from those before sculpting in marble. Very different technique than Michaelangelo.

Once back outside Marco took us along the many streets and plazas to tell us the history of the buildings and people. Much is reflective of the Medici family and their influence on the Renaissance. We passed the Baptistry, the cathedral with the famous Duomo, the bell tower, the bronze Doors to Paradise, and the Loggia dei Lanzi, where the David statue actually stood outside the municipal building for almost 500 years. There is now a replica in its place. We then meandered through the San Lorenzo market and over to the Ponte Vecchio bridge, the oldest bridge over the Arnold River, built in 1345. That lead us into the Oltrano area, with many working artisans and where more Florentines actually live, as opposed to the main tourist areas. It was there that we said our goodbyes to Marco and sat down to a well deserved lunch.

Our time eating with a few glasses of wine allowed us to miss a brief, unexpected rain shower. First stop for Silas was his daily helping of gelato. Jayne and I opted for our first canolis. Yum!! Back out in the sunshine we dallied along the bridge as it is home to solely jewelry shops. As one of my favorite souvenirs as I travel now is to find a gold charm for my bracelet I thought it might be the perfect place to find one. With Jayne and Silas’s help I selected one that represents the Porcellino, the boar we rubbed to bring us back to Florence.

Now back at the hotel for our late afternoon respite prior to going out for dinner. Most likely to a spot recommended by Marco. Have to trust the local experts!

3 thoughts on “Galleria Dell’ Accademia

  1. Sue Hutchins

    Fun to read your impressions of my favorite place on earth. Crazy pace you are keeping but it will have you all wishing for another visit. Thanks especially for the best view of David!!!

    Liked by 1 person

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