In this blog, Sarah shares her favorite places to study in Florence, from cafes to libraries. Whether you're looking for great coffee, a quiet spot, or a place close to the CAPA center, Sarah has a place that fits the bill.
1. If you’re looking for quiet… Biblioteca delle Oblate
This library is a perfect place to study
Monday-Saturday: 9AM - 11:45PM
This is a public library very close to CAPA, a little more than a 5-minute walk away. This library used to be a convent, and is a nice area close to the Duomo. There is both outdoor and indoor seating where you can study peacefully. Sitting outdoors is a nice way to be surrounded by students, both Italian and American. On the top floor, there is a terrace cafe with a beautiful view of the Duomo. A study spot with a view! They also have aperitivo here at night.
There aren’t many cafes with this view!
Inside the library you’ll find quieter spaces to do your homework and studying. There are many different areas where you can sit at tables and desks to settle into your work. Many spots are secluded and hush. To do reading, I always need quiet so I preferred this option.
Where better to focus than inside a library?
2. If you’re looking to study around other students… Caffe Letterario Le Murate
'Not far from my apartment, so I think I’ll start coming here more often!
Address: Piazza delle Murate
Located in an old prison square not far from Santa Croce, Le Murate is an awesome study spot. There is plenty of seating, both inside and outside. Here, you’ll see a lot of Florentine students chatting or doing their home on their laptops. It is totally okay to sit down here and be on your laptop for an extended period of time.
There are plenty of options for lunch or dinner if you’re feeling hungry. Check out their buffets for dinner! The caffe also hosts literary events, live music, and art showings.
3. If you’re looking for good coffee… Ditta Artigianale
The Neri Location
There are two different locations for Ditta. The Neri location is very close to CAPA, only about 3-5 minutes away. Here it’s totally okay to sit down with your coffee and do work on your laptop. This isn’t always the norm at Italian cafes, so Ditta provides a spot close to CAPA to do this. The only thing is that this location can be a little noisy, as Neri is a heavily travelled street.
I sat down upstairs at the Sprone location, and had a pleasant experience
If you want a calmer vibe, check out their Oltrarno location, on Via dello Sprone. This is farther away from the historical center, but I love this area. There is plenty of seating, both upstairs and downstairs. Their staff are super friendly, and they have pleasing music for studying. At either location however, one thing is guaranteed: great coffee!
4. If you’re looking for fresh… Shake Cafe
Here’s the Corso location
Their location on Camillo Cavour has plenty of seating for studying and doing homework. It’s very close to the Duomo, and a much safer bet for sitting down with your laptop. However, it can get a little noisy here when it’s busy.
Plenty of room at the Camillo Cavour location!
I only recently discovered Shake’s location on Via degli Avelli, and I haven’t personally studied or ordered from this one. I can say that this location is bigger than the Corso one, but smaller than the Camillo Cavour one. At all locations, you can count on fresh and tasty shakes, smoothie and acai bowls, salads and more.
Here’s a pic of my smoothie bowl that I got at the Corso location!
5. If you’re looking for a Barnes & Noble type of vibe… La Feltrinelli Red
A nice spot not too far from CAPA
Right in Piazza Republica lies a big bookstore with a large cafe inside. It reminds me of a Starbucks inside of a Barnes & Noble at home. By the cafe, there is a large seating area perfect for studying. They also have outdoor seating, but I would suggest the cafe would be a better place to do your homework. Inside it’s a little quieter, with light music and coffee.
Bonus: They have a pretty large section of books in English too
6. If you’re looking for quaint … La Cite
One of my favorite study spots!
La Cite is an awesome literary cafe close to the Arno River. I really liked it here. The coffee was good, the music was pleasing, and I was able to get a lot of work done. I definitely would recommend this study spot to other students in Florence. I didn’t grab a picture of it, but in addition to their seating on the main floor, they also have space for studying upstairs surrounded by bookshelves. It’s an awesome aesthetic.
Me studying at La Cite
7. If you’re looking for a bagel … Mama’s Bakery
Mama’s is another nice location in the Oltrarno neighborhood where it’s acceptable to sit down on your laptop. The staff is very friendly, and it’s also pretty quiet here during the day. In addition to the indoor seating, you can sit down in their outdoor courtyard. This is also one of the few places in Florence where you can get a bagel.
8. If you’re looking for a relaxed atmosphere …Todo Modo
One of the coolest study spots that I’ve found.
Another literary cafe, Todo Modo is not far from Piazza Santa Maria Novella. Step into this bookstore and at the back you’ll find a nice cafe. You can sit among the stacks of books and study as you’re served food and coffee. If you’re by SMN, I recommend stopping by.
9. If you’re looking for convenience… Just study at CAPA!
There’s the study lounge
And also the computer lab
And if all this still isn’t enough, here’s a list of other study spots I plan on possibly looking into:
- Sit n' Breakfast
- Lorenzo de Medici Library
- Palazzo Giovani
Sarah Graham is an official CAPA blogger for fall 2019, sharing her story in frequent posts on CAPA World. An English major at University of Massachusetts Amherst, she is studying abroad in Florence this semester.
Sarah's journey continues all semester so stay tuned.