Our Qualified Tourist Guide of Florence - Daniela, fetched us from our Hotel and walked us through the many highlights of Florence, explaining in detail the architectural masterpieces that we viewed along the way. She is an extremely intelligent, learned, multi-lingual guide, so well-versed with Florentian history, that spending time with her was truly an eye opening experience. Florence is such a historic city with so much antiquity that it's important to have the right kind of guide who can do it justice and bring the past to life for you.
As we were touring in the evening, the weather was nicer, the crowds were thinner, the monuments were starting to gradually light up- the city was electrifying.
I especially enjoyed Daniela's explanations of the frustrating challenges that faced architects who attempted to contruct the Dome of the Duomo which had no roof until the dome came on!, her knowledge of the construction material used for the glorious church of Piazza Santa Maria Novella, the insights she gave us into the origins of the Uffizzi and the extravagant lives of the prominent Medici family and their rivals.
While we were walking Daniela would make it a point to point out unusual aspects of the city- like strange statues at corners, huge metal rings attached to buildings, a Roman arch in a piazza, etc.
Though we stopped for ice cream at Florence's BEST gelateria- Perché no!, Daniela definitely saved the best for last by taking us to watch the setting sun from iconic Ponte Vecchio.
There's something about a Tuscan sunset that sets it apart. The sun doesn't dim, it glows and burns, almost setting everything in it's path ablaze- the monuments, the bridges, the river and you!
Before saying goodbye Daniela pointed us in the direction of great restaurants where we could enjoy dinner.
Do this tour with the exceptional Daniela- it's one of kind and so is she!
Felicia Variava Albert, Managing Director, Blaze Tours and Travels Pvt. Ltd., Mumbai, India