The Duomo — the main cathedral in Florence — seemed to glow at night.

Florence was warm in July. Very warm. But it didn’t matter. It was a relief to escape the tourist frenzy of Venice and arrive in this Tuscan city of amazing architecture and food. Today’s post marvels at the architecture.

Atop Duomo with all of Florence below us.

My brothers-in-law Jimmy and Peter and I climbed to the top of the Duomo, the main cathedral in central Florence.

There was no warning when we bought our entrance ticket as to how steep a climb it would be the top of the cuppola.

Everest, I thought at the time, might be easier. Ha. But it certainly was not a journey for the faint of heart.

More than 400 narrow winding steps later, we walked out into the fresh air, all of Florence below us.

It was truly magnificent under a cloudless sky, the Tuscan hills beyond us.

Ponte Vecchio.

It was equally interesting to cross the Ponte Vecchio, the medieval stone arch bridge over the narrowest part of the Arno River.

A central Florence market.

Once the shops on the bridge were all occupied by butchers. These days, it’s a dazzling array of gold and jewelry shops, art dealers and stalls hawking souvenirs for tourists.

We strolled the Piazza della Signoria, the main plaza in Florence, teeming with larger-than-life statues including Michaelangelo’s David — the original is in the Galleria dell’Academia.

Every street and plaza in Florence offered visitors something to gaze at, something to wonder about. We stopped and peered into shops that sold incredible Florentine leather nd handcrafted paper.

And coming up in my next post: the food. Heaven to be in Tuscany, I think. Incredibly fresh food and bottles of Chianti.

Why did i return to Atlanta?

The main plaza.
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