Thursday, February 14, 2013

Florence: Piazza della Signoria

Santa Croce
Loggia dei Lanzi
Several buildings surround this most busy square in the city, filled with tourists and street vendors who sell their fake wares on a blanket, so when the rumor of a cop is nearby, they can quickly gather up their junk and trot away, only to come back as soon as the coast is clear.  The Palazzo Vecchio is the old palace, with a quaint courtyard to help you escape the crowds and the heat.  The Loggia dei Lanzi has classic statues of famous works, such as Cellini's decapitation of Medusa.  The Rivoire cafe has splendid hot chocolates and boxed chocolates to go, a perfect souvenir.  Finally, the Santa Croce church is a 14th century Franciscan church that entombs famous Florentines.  It is a welcome respite from the crowds and the heat, as peace and calmness reigns in the middle of the chaos.


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