We only had 13 days for this Italian trip and Florence ( Firenze ) was not on our radar - we wanted to go to Cinque Terre but this Michelangelo's Renaissance City is hard to ignore, so we decided to go for it. We took the train from Bologna to Florence on our way to La Spezia (for Cinque Terre).
From Firenze S.M.N. train station, we walked across to Basilica di Santa Maria Novella, then to the roundabout which look like the trendy part of the City. One of our targets was the Basilica Santa Croce where it says Michelangelo was buried. Crossing the street and followed via dei Banchi, via delle Belle Donne, via della Spada and via de' Tornabuoni. We ended up on the Ponte Santa Trinita. We continue forward to "Ponte Vecchio" and from there hoping to go to Santa Croce.
We had to pause to take pictures on the way. I had planned to taste the famous Florence steak but couldn't find a steakhouse so decided to have lunch in a small cafe. In lieu of steak, we got a ground fish sandwich ( it was Good Friday, after all ) with some salad stuff on it and a Coke, of course.
Look around for souvenirs, took pictures ( I took 1,200 pictures and 6 videos on this trip) then realized that we needed to get back to catch our train to La Spezia for the Cinque Terre.
We started walking back hurriedly wending our way through crowds of sightseers, shoppers, and churchgoers as we needed to change train in S. Stefano to get to La Spezia for the Cinque Terre ( which we actually missed and ended up in Pontremoli at 10:00 pm). We manage to take another train from Pontremoli to La Spezia and glad Little Monkey and Anna is at the La Spezia S.M.N. train station waiting for us.
In the end, we missed Basilica Santa Croce, Uffizi, and Galleria - dell' Academia but our one hour forty minutes in Firenza was worth it. Firenza is not only a beautiful and charming city but something to look forward to return to in the future.
How to visit Florence if you only have 1 hour 40 minutes.