Palazzo Vecchio

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5 Architectural and Historical Features of Palazzo Vecchio

Palazzo Vecchio is one of Florence's premier museums, where you can explore many different layers of Italian history since Roman times.

  • Roman ruins

    1. Roman ruins

    Although only accessible from underground - the Palazzo was built directly on top of it - the ruins of a Roman theater testify to this building's age.

  • Tower of Palazzo Vecchio

    2. Tower of Palazzo Vecchio

    At 95 meters tall, this tower is the definitive symbol of Florence and absolutely the best place to take your pictures of the city's charming buildings.

  • Medieval Fortress

    3. Medieval Fortress

    There's more to the fortress than the Tower. Construction of the fortress began in 1299 under Arnolfo di Cambio. Today its battlements and sturdy stone structure symbolize political potence from times gone by.

  • Salone dei Cinquecento

    4. Salone dei Cinquecento

    This was built as the grandest room - originally intended to serve as the seat of the Great Council. Now it serves as the centerpiece for anyone's visit.

  • Renaissance chambers

    5. Renaissance chambers

    The maze of chambers with artwork and decorated ceilings by Michelangelo, among other prominent Renaissance artists, is not to be missed - you won't have seen anything like it quite on this scale!

Planning Your Visit

  • Rain check

    If rain is in the forecast, access to the Tower of Palazzo Vecchio will be suspended for safety reasons.

  • Opening times

    Winter opening times for the tower are limited compared to summer (or high season), so if you're visiting between October and March, make sure to get there early in the day.

  • Don't overdo it

    The way to the top of the tower is 418 steps, so don't attempt to climb if it may put your health at risk - there is no elevator.

  • Stay sun-safe

    On sunny days - and even when the sun's behind a cloud! - it's important to cover up with sunscreen. And even more so because you're nearly 100 meters closer to the sun!

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Open October - March, 9:00AM to 7:00PM. April - September, 9:00AM to 11:00PM. Special opening hours on Thursdays from 9:00AM to 2:00PM.
  • Is it expensive?
    Museum admission: 10euros. Tower and Battlements: 10euros. Discount available for students.
  • Will I need a guide?
    Free to explore on your own or find a guided tour and receive insight into the many layers of history present.
  • How to get there
    Located in the center of Florence at the Piazza della Signoria.
  • Additional information

    • As a top sight for Florence, be prepared for a bit of a wait to get in. If you get the Firenze card, you can skip the lines and get to the front.

    • The steps outside the museum serve for a perfect spot to rest before or after your visit and take in prime Florence people watching and occassional street performances in the Piazza.

Other Sightseeing Options in Palazzo Vecchio

Want to discover all there is to do in Palazzo Vecchio? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Palazzo Vecchio

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 5,189 reviews

As we walked around Florence she shared all.sorts of interesting history with us about the buildings we were seeing. It was fascinating.

Rosa was an excellent guide with unparalleled knowledge. She established a good rapport and carried over information well.

Our guide was personable and knowledgeable and gave an interesting overview of the Medicis in Florence. Thanks again.

Good experience. The guide allows to take some pictures and spend time in the point of interest

Very beautiful experince!A lot of wonderful history.