August is here, and for those in town, here are a few ideas on how to spend this hot month in Florence.
Museums open at night
With the warm weather, tourists flock to Florence, but when the summer heat sets in, walking around town in the sun can get hard. They often end up holing up in their hotel with air conditioning, or if it’s at our hotel, in the pool! But when evening falls, they are sorry to have missed the museums and monuments. The City of Florence is here to help, having organized several events for those who want to enjoy Florence after dark.
For the entire summer, through September 29, the Uffizi will be open late every Tuesday evening, from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm.
The Accademia, home to David, will also be open in the evening this summer, from July 1 to September 30, from 7:00 pm to 10:00 pm.
Dalì meets Dante
Some 100 watercolors by Salvador Dali, painted in homage to Dante’s Divine Comedy, will be displayed at the Galleria delle Carrozze in Palazzo Medici Riccardi.
The event marks the 750th anniversary of Dante’s birth.
Monday – Sunday, 10:00 am – 7:00 pm
If you’ll be in Florence, August 10 (the Feast of St. Lawrence) is a special day. The church of San Lorenzo, in the neighborhood of the same name, is one of Florence’s oldest and its first consecrated church. At first glance, it might seem rather plain — especially its facade, compared to the ornate ones of Santa Croce and Santa Maria Novella — but let’s not forget the true masterpieces within and how important it was to the Medici family (the Medici Chapels are behind it). Every year on the Feast of St. Lawrence, Florence is crossed by a historic parade starting in the morning (at 10:00 am on August 10 from the Parte Guelfa square). The parade comes to Piazza San Lorenzo around 11:00 am with the “offering of candles” ritual and then returns about 11:30 am. Watermelon is passed out during the day and then everyone watches shooting stars in the evening!
Calici di Stelle
August 10 is an important day for another reason — throughout Italy the Calici di Stelle event takes place. Wine tasting, winery tours and side events become part of the evening of stargazing. Many Tuscan wine cities and towns take part of the event, mingling the Milky Way with wine, with tastings paired with stargazing.
One nearby is at Terre di Perseto in San Casciano, Val di Pesa, about 20 minutes from Florence. On Monday, August 10, the program includes a bike ride through the rolling hills of San Casciano taking guests to Terre di Perseto. The guided tour of the winery will reveal the secrets of how Chianti Classico wine is made. Next are wine and food tastings with an excellent selection of local specialties. The evening will end with the guests luxuriating in stargazing with a glass of wine in hand and music in the background.
English translation by Miriam Hurley