50 Florence Quotes We Love

Oct 11, 2016 1:30:00 PM / by Stephanie Sadler

We often find inspiration from the words of others. And most certainly wanderlust. And sometimes nostalgia. Even motivation. We've gathered 50 of our favorite quotes about Florence below and hope they'll move you too. 

50 Perfect Quotes About Florence

1. "Stand on a bridge over the Arno river several times in a day and the light, mood and view changes every time. Firenze is magnetic, romantic and busy. Its urban fabric has hardly changed since the Renaissance, its narrow streets evoke a thousand tales, and its food and wine are so wonderful the tag 'Fiorentina' has become an international label of quality assurance." - Lonely Planet

2. "To see the sun sink down, drowned on his pink and purple and golden floods, and overwhelm Florence with tides of color that make all the sharp lines dim and faint and turn the solid city to a city of dreams, is a sight to stir the coldest nature." - Mark Twain

3. "To say that Italy is magnificent is a massive understatement. [...] Florence is no exception, in fact, it’s the king of Italy." - (source)

4. “Among the four old bridges that span the river, the Ponte Vecchio, that bridge which is covered with the shops of jewelers and goldsmiths, is a most enchanting feature in the scene. The space of one house, in the center, being left open, the view beyond, is shown as in a frame; and that precious glimpse of sky, and water, and rich buildings, shining so quietly among the huddled roofs and gables on the bridge, is exquisite". - Charles Dickens

5. "Even though I was in Florence for an entire semester, I was exposed to something new every single day, and that was exhilarating to me. Constantly encountering new sights, sounds, and smells caused me to be in a perpetual state of awe, which is something I truly miss. Whether it was a street artist showing off his work or an old Italian man playing the accordion, something new caught my eye each day as I explored the city." - Emily Kearns, CAPA Florence alumna

6. "Florence's is a subtle beauty—its staid, unprepossessing palaces built in local stone are not showy, even though they are very large. They take on a certain magnificence when day breaks and when the sun sets; their muted colors glow in this light." - Fodors

7. “Visiting Florence was like attending a surprise party every day.” - Jennifer Coburn, author

8. "Florence is considered to be the artistic, historical, and cultural capital of not only Tuscany, but of all Italy. Its physical elegance coexists beautifully with the il dolce far niente (the sweetness of doing nothing) lifestyle of the Florentines and it reveals the city in a strong, yet gentle way that makes us want to delve deep into its art, culture, and history." - (source)

9. "Florence is not just my home, but also my life companion, which is why I call her 'my beloved city'." - (source)

10. "Sure, Florence is touristy. But where else can you stroll the same pedestrian streets walked by Michelangelo, Leonardo, and Botticelli while savoring the world's best gelato?" - (source)

50 Perfect Quotes About Florence

11. "Gelato is one of the highlights of a trip to Italy, every bit as important as seeing The David. (Actually, there's a fantastic gelateria just two blocks down from the Accademia, so you can even have your ice cream while waiting in line to see The David. Perfect!" - (source)

12. "A city-size shrine to the Renaissance, Florence offers frescoes, sculptures, churches, palaces, and other monuments from the richest cultural flowering the world has known." - National Geographic

13. "Have you heard of Stendhal syndrome, that supposed illness that causes sufferers to grow faint at the sight of great beauty? It also goes by the name “Florence syndrome,” as it was first coined after 19th century visitors to Florence were overcome." - (source)

14. "You should absolutely spend time enjoying the exterior of the Duomo, it is dreamily beautiful. I enjoyed looking at it many times a day. It is especially beautiful around sunset when it is illuminated against a deep blue sky." - (source)

15. "And when I thought of Florence, it was like a miracle city embalmed and like a corolla, because it was called the city of lilies and its cathedral, St. Mary of the Flowers." - Marcel Proust, Swann's Way.

16. "We are fortunate: Florence isn’t just the cradle of art—it is a city that celebrates the art of living well." - (source)

17. "The energy of Florence is indescribable: overflowing with bustle and charm, teeming with life. Every corner bears new treasures, every cobblestone a gem. The artistry in the sculptures, the landscapes, the architecture is beyond compare. I feel a sense of humility and awe walking along these ancient streets, which have served as witness to countless revolutions, tread upon for so many centuries by artists and martyrs and geniuses alike. The stones are infused with history and culture and knowledge: I feel it. I feel the presence of generations, I feel the weight of giants." - Emily Kyle, CAPA Florence alumna

18. "Unlike Rome and Milan, Florence has a much more 'homey' feel to it. It’s easy to immerse oneself in the Florentine lifestyle and find yourself never wanting to leave." - (source)

19. "Through these old streets I wander dreamily; Around me Florence sweeps her busy tide of life." - William Leighton

20. "On one side of a small, ancient piazza, where stone columns support a medieval leather market still in operation today, a bronze boar watches over the throngs of tourists by day and the occasional lone violinist by night. According to local superstition, a rub of its nose will guarantee a return to the city in the future. And believe me, you’ll want this particular wish to come true." - (source)

50 Perfect Quotes About Florence

21. "Tuscany is a storybook landscape, home to medieval hill towns, fabled wines and, as crucible of the Renaissance, an unrivaled collection of artistic masterpieces." - (source)

22. "Florence is known for its cultural vibes that fill the streets. These vibes give you a feeling of overwhelming happiness. It’s a city of color; the intricately designed buildings are filled with hand-carved details. People were dancing in the streets. No matter where you turned, there was a small cafe just waiting for you to try the traditional cappuccinos that Italy is most famously known for, and people never failed to make you feel welcomed." - (source)

23. "Simply walking through the streets of the town er transports you back into the past. This is a place that has remained intact, there is a genuineness to the city and its people, just as has been described by so many famous poets and writers." - (source)

24. "What I observed as I people-watched while eating a cone of gelato on any normal day in Florence, was the fact that tourists (who may only be visiting the city for a few days) and locals alike all have the same reaction to the city’s gems. It’s as if everyone who lays their eyes on these famous sites around the city can’t help but be in awe and have the same appreciation of what they see whether it’s a visitor seeing something for the first time a local who has lived in Florence all of their life. It’s the beauty of Florence." - Nicolette Carlos, CAPA Florence alumna

25. "One of our favorite things about Italy is how serious Italians take their coffee." - (source)

26. "Dearest foodies of all tastes and palates, prepare to experience a truly gluttonous adventure... Because the Florentines cook with passion and boldness and will invite you to indulge in their abundant gastronomic bounties!" - (source)

27. "Pitti is a huge place that is chock-a-block full of fabulous artworks - sculpture, paintings, ceiling and floor decoration, wall decoration. I found myself imagining being a Medici and living in the spaces with the artworks - wow wow wow. I also have a new appreciation for my ceilings - I am not sure that white ceiling cuts it anymore when I could put a fresco here and there - a few touches of gold and voila! I would have my own little palace in the city." - (source)

28. "Florence the centerpiece of Tuscany." - (source)

29. "In Florence, even the graffiti is ancient. But now the city is going through a sparkly revival, with iconoclastic art, edgy architecture and quirky twists on regional food." - (source)

30. "Florence is one of my greatest loves. Loving a city is like loving a person: I was initially attracted to Florence’s beauty, I enjoy so many of her qualities, I accept my beloved city as she is, and I love how she makes me feel when I am in her embrace. I didn’t choose to love Florence by checking items off of a list, but rather by feeling her love inside of me. While I am attracted to Florence’s exterior, it is her interior that I fell in love with. Her heart, her soul, and her vibrant energy influence me every day." - (source)

50 Perfect Quotes About Florence

31. "Hiding around every corner seems to be a fresco-covered, marble-clad, brightly-coloured, sculpture-stuffed, reason for my jaw to hit the floor. My pointing finger immediately hovers upwards and I say, “Ooohhhh, look at that!” It is all just so impossibly beautiful." - (source)

32. "It’s not a city in which to waste time, such are its cultural check boxes. But there’s also something to be said for allowing yourself to just ‘be’ in this open-air museum: explore its woodsmoke-scented backstreets and smaller, atmospheric squares. Give yourself the time, for example, to amble around the tight, residential lanes of the Oltrarno district that form around the pretty little Santo Spirito basilica. Stop to peer into tiny artisans’ workshops, where intricate leatherwork, gold leaf and icon painting goes painstakingly on, as it always has." - (source)

33. "Florence is magical!" - (source)

34. "Florence was running up the hills all the way to Piazzale Michelangelo, just to see the city waking up soaked in a morning dew. Florence was climbing up 412 stairs up the tower of the Duomo, for the sake of taking beautiful pictures. Florence was all about chocolate and coffee. Florence was visiting the Academia, paying only €4 to see the masterpiece of David, and sneaking pictures of him when the museum guards were not watching. Florence is having Ricotta Cheese and Figs for lunch and chocolate and ice cream for dinner. Florence is walking in cobblestone streets with funny names such as Via de Tornabuoni or Via Maffia. Florence is watching men in their best tailored suits riding their bicycles. Florence is doing and experiencing all of the above. Over and over again." - (source)

35. “Florence is pure beauty; it has a positive and vibrant energy in its streets.” - (source)

36. "The food was ABSOLUTELY INCREDIBLE!! All fresh, never frozen, no preservatives. Since Italy, I have become obsessed with chili pepper infused olive oil and pear ravioli! I tried so many different types of dishes and paired new things together (pomegranate, pasta, cheese!? So good!). I still find myself thinking about all of the insane food there." - Samantha Giordano, CAPA Florence alumna

37. "We talk of many things as we walk and do not realize, as we go through the tiny cobbled streets, pass the crowded cafes and gelataries, that Florence is gingerly working its charm and paving its way through our hearts." - (source)

38. "Walking through the city of Florence is like walking through a fashion magazine." - (source)

39. "Florence rewards travelers with the ‘vagabond happiness' so dear to Stendhal. Lose yourself, leave your tourist guide behind, roam its streets, accidentally come across the beautiful deserted Piazzetta, linger along the Arno, spy a stucco Madonna praying above a door, snack on falafels in front of the synagogue… let yourselves be transported by Florence's charm." - (source)

40. "Florence is one of those cities that most of us want to experience at least once (but most likely hundreds of times)!" - (source)

50 Perfect Quotes About Florence

41. "Every few steps you will be taken by the smells wafting from the trattorias, osterias, cafes and pizzerias. You will be surrounded by the sounds of the lively conversations in one of the most beautiful languages in the world. Even the complaining children sound beautiful! (Although, the Italians may not agree!)" - (source)

42. "Florence is like a diamond that I keep looking at from different angles to find more of her to love." - (source)

43. "We can look at Renaissance art and architecture in books all day long, but until you stand in the shadow or doorway of these places, you can't comprehend the size and grandeur. That's what I was most taken with in Florence...the sheer scale of the churches and statues. It feels a bit like Alice in Wonderland...we passed through the Rabbit Hole and became tiny humans in Florence." - (source)

44. "If Italy were Mona Lisa then Florence would be her smile." (source)

45. "Craftsmen bind books and make marbled paper. Antique pieces are refurbished by people who've become curators of the dying techniques of gilding, engraving, etching, enameling, mosaics, and repoussé metal work. From my bedroom I can see the Accademia. The courtyard in between is gravelly with broken columns and stones set up for students to carve. Like creative woodpeckers, I hear the happy pecking and chirping of chisels gaining confidence, cutting through the stone. Hundreds of years after the Renaissance, it's comforting to know that the spirit of creation remains alive and well in Florence." - (source)

46. "Florence is a provincial city with an international flair." - (source)

47"I think of Florence like a beautifully crafted pair of shoes that are just a little bit too tight. Sometimes they fit alright, sometimes they don’t, but either way they always look amazing." - (source)

48. "Firenze and the surrounding Tuscan countryside are the most sensuous places I have ever visited. The splendorous art of the city is a kaleidoscopic circus of colors, figures, lines, and shapes which dazzle the eye. The aromas of delicious cuisine waft out of the trattorie and into the streets. And the sounds of the city – from the bells of the imposing campanile to the massive church organs to the street musicians – create a marvelous musical melody accompanying you on every corner." - Jack Meyer, CAPA Florence alum

49. "In my mind I see Florence as an old lady; she loves her gardens and squares, she enjoys talking on churches’ stairs, she’s sarcastic and cynical, she has a dry sense of humor, she curses very easily; she has a simple taste and she can’t stand artificiality." - (source)

50. "You may have the universe if I may have Italy." - Guiseppe Verdi 

Share your favorite Florence quotes with us on social media: #CAPAStudyAbroad!

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Topics: Florence, Italy, Travel