3 days in Florence: the perfect Itinerary (first time visit)


How to spend 3 days in Florence: The best itinerary + Where to stay

You’re planning to spend 3 days in Florence and you’re looking for the best things to do?

You’re at the right place!

In order to help you plan your stay, I have prepared for you this 3-day itinerary in Florence.

During your trip, you will discover all must-see attractions of the city such as Florence Cathedral, the Brunelleschi Dome, or the the Ponte Vecchio.

In addition to the best places to visit and activities for each stage of your itinerary, I will also give you all my best tips and accommodation suggestions depending on your budget.

So, what are the best places to visit in Florence in 3 days? Where to stay?

Let’s find out!

My best Tips to save time at Florence’s must-see attractions

Let’s be honest, Florence ranks highly among the top tourist cities in Italy.

If you have already visited the Colosseum in Rome, the Duomo in Milan or the Tower of Pisa, you’ve probably seen the long queues stretching in front of these iconic sites.

Well, among all the must-sees in Florence over 3 days, there are at least 3 that are overrun as soon as the doors open: the Florence Cathedral, the Uffizi Gallery, and the Accademia Gallery.

Fortunately, since you’ve come to Voyage Tips, you won’t have to stand in line with everyone else! How is that possible?

I’ll give you straight away the 2 best solutions to optimize your visit to Florence in three days.

1. The Florence Pass

The first tip I recommend to save time during your 3-day stay in Florence is to get the Florence Pass.

It includes access to the most important monuments and museums in Florence such as:

  • Brunelleschi’s Dome
  • The Uffizi Gallery + Audioguide
  • The Academy Gallery + Audioguide
  • An audioguide of Florence with over 70 points of interest: perfect to learn all there is to know about the city!
  • A 10% discount on a host of other activities in Florence.

So to make the most of your 3-day stay in Florence without any hassle, do as I did and buy the Florence Pass 😉!

Getting your Florence Pass is very simple, you just need to click the button below:

2. Skip-the-Line Tickets for Florence Tourist Attractions

To visit Florence in 3 days and get fast access to the most visited sites, the other option is to purchase a skip-the-line ticket for each place you want to visit.

You can book priority entrance tickets just for the museums and monuments you plan to see. It’s really very convenient to maximize the number of visits during 3 days in Florence.

You also have the option to book guided tours in French of Florence or its monuments. This is the best solution to learn more about the history of the capital of Tuscany.

Lastly, why not take advantage of your 3-day stay in Florence to try out one or more activities, such as a Italian cooking class for example?

I’ve prepared a list with all the tickets that are interesting and that match my itinerary.

For more information and to make your reservations, click on the orange links below (I will also include them again throughout the article):

Visiting Florence in 3 Days: The Must-Sees

Voyage Tips - Advice

If you want to see and book other tours and activities during your 3-day itinerary in Florence, I recommend these 2 websites (click on the links):

One Last Tip for a Perfect 3-Day Stay in Florence

If you already know your travel dates (or as soon as you will have them!), you should really book your accommodation.

As Florence is one of the most touristic cities in the world, the hotels offering the best value for money are often fully booked months in advance.

As a seasoned traveler, I can assure you that it’s always by planning as far in advance as possible that I’ve found the best hotels or apartments deals.

You agree that it would be a shame to somewhat ruin your stay in Florence by ending up in a not-so-great hotel that costed you a fortune, right? 😅

So your best bet is to take 5 minutes now to have a look at traveler’s favorite hotels in Florence.

And if you like one of the hotels you find, book it!

It’s fast, it’s easy and most accommodation offer free cancellation. That’s the best way to protect yourself from the inconvenience of finding nothing but mediocre rooms at exorbitant prices.

To check the best hotels deals in Florence, simply click on the green button below:

After securing your dream stay, it’s time to continue reading this guide!

Visiting Florence in 3 Days: The Best Itinerary

Let’s now start your 3-day itinerary in Florence!

For each day, I will give you all the details you need to plan your visits + a map that will allow you to visualize the itinerary a bit better.

I’m assuming you will be staying in Florence for 3 full days and that you will be using the Florence Pass or have purchased skip-the-line tickets in advance. It’s the best way to save time and money during your stay!

If you still have questions after reading this guide (or need help organizing your holiday), don’t hesitate to ask me in the comments section located at the very end of this article.

I will be glad to help you plan your trip 😄.

So, what are the best places to visit in Florence in 3 days?

First Day – Florence Itinerary

Florence itinerary day 1
Visiting Florence in 3 days – Day 1

Visits for Day 1:

A. The Galleria dell’Accademia
B. The Dome of the Cathedral
C. The Monuments of Piazza del Duomo
D. The Basilica di Santa Maria Novella
E. The Basilica di San Lorenzo / The Medici Chapels

A. The Galleria dell’Accademia

The first visit on the agenda for your 3-day stay in Florence is the Galleria dell’Accademia.

Here you’ll find one of the most famous statues in the world: Michelangelo’s David. A more than 5-meter-tall work carved from nearly 5 tonnes of marble, and as you might guess, it’s quite impressive.

Besides this symbol of the Italian Renaissance, the Galleria dell’Accademia comprises several rooms including:

  • The Sala del Colosso which features another stunning sculpture “The Rape of the Sabine Women”
  • The Hall of Prisoners hosting some of Michelangelo’s unfinished sculptures
  • The Musical Instruments Museum.

Very interesting, this museum is in the top 5 must-see places in Florence in 3 days.

Voyage Tips - Advice

Every day, there’s at least a 1-hour queue in front of the Galleria dell’Accademia in Florence right from the opening.

Booking your skip-the-line ticket is a must if you want to avoid starting your vacation standing outside in line.

Here are the different tickets available (all with priority entrance). Just click on the (orange) links or green buttons to book:

  • Guided tour in French including fast-track access to the museum. Great for a deeper understanding of all the works on display!

  • Buy the Florence Pass which includes priority entrance to the Galleria dell’Accademia as well as the Uffizi Gallery (on the agenda for day 2) + Access to the Dome of the Cathedral + A downloadable Audio Guide of Florence.

Galleria dell'Accademia
The Galleria dell’Accademia, a must-visit in 3 days in Florence!

B. The Duomo of Florence

The second stop of this first day in Florence is the Piazza del Duomo, and more precisely the Florence Cathedral, which is less than 5 minutes’ walk from the Galleria dell’Accademia.

Dominating the entire square, the Duomo of Florence is particularly striking with its immense facade in white and green marble.

It took 140 years to build and is now in the top 3 largest cathedrals in the world. Only the Basilica of Saint Peter in Rome and the Cathedral of Saint Paul’s in London are larger.

But there is another element of the cathedral you absolutely must see: Brunelleschi’s Dome. The famous dome boasts vertiginous dimensions, standing 115 meters tall with a 45-meter diameter.

To get a closer look and discover the scenes of the Last Judgment painted on it, you’ll first need to take a narrow staircase.

This staircase (463 steps in total!) then leads to the outside of the dome where you can admire a clear 360° panorama over the city.

To learn more about the Duomo and the dome, I explain everything in my detailed article: Visiting the Florence Cathedral.

Note that you can enter the inside of the cathedral for free if you don’t want to climb up to the dome. But it’s really not worth queuing for that since there’s nothing much to see inside. It’s very austere, and all the artworks/sculptures that were there have been moved to the Museum of the Works of the Cathedral.

Voyage Tips - Advice

Access to the dome and the roof is strictly regulated, operating on a time slot basis. Since the staircase is too narrow, a rotation system must be implemented, as only a limited number of people are allowed per hour.

For all these reasons, it’s mandatory to buy your ticket for Florence’s dome in advance, to be sure of getting a spot.

You have the choice of various tickets/guided tours (again, the orange links or green button are for booking):


  • Get the Florence Pass which includes access to the dome + a priority entrance to the Galleria dell’Accademia as well as the Uffizi Gallery + A Florence audio guide to download.
  • Ticket for the dome:

  • Guided tour in French of Florence’s dome:

  • Guided tour in French of the dome + Baptistery + Opera Museum + Ticket for the campanile:

The Duomo – Visiting Florence in 3 days

C. The Monuments of Piazza del Duomo

Don’t leave Piazza del Duomo without at least taking a peek at the other monuments there:

1) Giotto’s bell tower, which corresponds to the cathedral’s campanile. A staircase of 414 steps (yes, another calf workout!) leads to the top. But don’t expect a view as clear as from the dome.

2) Baptistery of San Giovianni, which, as you can guess, served as a baptismal site. Notable individuals baptized in Florence include the writer and poet Dante, the famous author of the “Divine Comedy”.

3) The Opera del Duomo Museum gathers the collection of art and sculptures previously located on the facades and inside the cathedral. I really enjoyed how they are highlighted and this is the visit I recommend doing first before the campanile and the baptistery.

Also make sure to step out on the museum terrace for a great view of Florence’s dome.

Voyage Tips - Advice

If you want to learn more about the history of the monuments of Piazza del Duomo, you should book this guided tour in French.

Your guide will take you to visit the dome (+ the roof), the baptistery, and the opera museum. You will also receive a ticket for the campanile (open access).

To book it, just click on the button below:

Opera del Duomo Museum
Opera del Duomo Museum – 72 hours in Florence

D. Basilica di Santa Maria Novella

Just a 10-minute walk from Piazza del Duomo, next, you should make your way to Basilica Santa Maria Novella.

Famed for its magnificent frescoes, some of which were created by the great Italian master Brunelleschi (who painted the interior of the Duomo’s dome), it dates back to the 13th century.

Good news: to avoid queuing, you can purchase your skip-the-line ticket in advance. It even includes an audioguide with all explanations in French.

To book:

Basilica Santa Maria Novella
Basilica Santa Maria Novella – itinerary for 3 days in Florence

E. Basilica di San Lorenzo and the Medici Chapels

Let’s continue your 3-day itinerary in Florence with another basilica: San Lorenzo.

This one is known for housing the famous Medici Chapels, part of a noteworthy patron family of the city and the entire Tuscany region.

Richly decorated and partly designed by Michelangelo, the Medici tombs are located in three different chapels:

  • The New Sacristy
  • The Chapel of the Princes
  • The Treasury Chapel.

As this visit is definitely among the top must-sees during your 3 days in Florence, a tip: remember to book your skip-the-line ticket!

You just need to click on the button below:

Voyage Tips - Advice

If you’re interested in the history of one of the richest families of Italy, there’s nothing better than booking a guided tour to follow the footsteps of the Medici.

And good news: it’s available in French.

To book with one click, use the button below:

San Lorenzo Basilica Florence
San Lorenzo Basilica Florence – Worth seeing in 3 days in Florence!

F. San Lorenzo Market

To wrap up this first day of sightseeing in Florence, I suggest dining at the market next to the basilica.

The San Lorenzo Market features a food court area with several restaurants offering mainly local cuisine.

So you can end your day with a pizza or a tasty pasta dish.

And you’ll avoid the argument over which restaurant to choose, as everyone can order their dish wherever they want and then sit at any of the tables arranged in the center of the market to eat.

The setting is also really pleasant, under a large glass roof.

San Lorenzo Market is open every day, for lunch and dinner.

Voyage Tips - Advice

In Florence, and in Italy in general, it’s best to avoid restaurants located around highly touristic areas like Piazza del Duomo. It’s the surest way to end up in a tourist trap, with menus translated into 10 languages and frozen pizzas!

San Lorenzo Market Florence
San Lorenzo Market Florence

Day Two of Your 72 Hours in Florence

itineraire Florence jour 2
Visiting Florence in 3 Days – Day 2

Visits for Day 2:

A. The Uffizi Gallery
B. The Ponte Vecchio
C. The Piazza della Signoria / Palazzo Vecchio
D. The Museum of Bargello Palace
E. The Basilica of Santa Croce

A. The Uffizi Gallery

Visiting Florence in 3 days undoubtedly includes a trip to the Uffizi Gallery.

Along with the Duomo and the Accademia Gallery, it’s definitely one of the top three places you must visit.

The Uffizi Gallery is a massive museum showcasing dozens of paintings by the most renowned Italian artists, such as Botticelli, Leonardo da Vinci, and Michelangelo.

Even if you’re not a big art fan, you’ll surely be impressed by these large canvases that are beautifully displayed.

Voyage Tips - Advice

At the risk of repeating myself, I remind you that to visit the Uffizi Museum, you need to have purchased your skip-the-line ticket in advance, using the links I will provide. Otherwise, even if you go at opening time, you’ll be waiting for at least an hour.

Here are the different tickets available (click the links or green button to book):

  • Get the Florence Pass I’ve already told you about
  • Skip-the-line entry (time slot selection required):

  • Small-group guided tour of the Uffizi in French:

  • Buy the Florence Pass with: priority entrance to the Uffizi Gallery + Accademia Gallery + Access to the Duomo’s dome + A Florence audio guide to download.

Uffizi Gallery
Uffizi Gallery – 3 Days in Florence

B. The Ponte Vecchio

Exiting the Uffizi Gallery, you’re just a few meters away from reaching the Ponte Vecchio alongside the Arno river.

Considered the city’s most famous bridge and dating back to the 14th century, it has a unique feature: houses built on top of it that nowadays host plenty of small goldsmith shops.

A must-visit for the ladies, though perhaps a bit less friendly on the gentlemen’s wallet! 😆

But don’t worry, you can also just take a lovely photo of the bridge, and that costs nothing.

Head to the Ponte Alle Grazie, the Pont San Trinita, or the viewpoint from the bar at Hotel Lungarno.

Ponte Vecchio Florence
Ponte Vecchio, Florence

C. The Piazza della Signoria / The Palazzo Vecchio

Continue the second day of this 72-hour itinerary in Florence by heading to the Piazza della Signoria (a 5-minute walk from Ponte Vecchio).

With its imposing Neptune fountain, numerous sculptures all around and beautiful buildings with typical architecture, the square is regarded as one of the prettiest in the city.

You should also take the opportunity to visit the Palazzo Vecchio, one of the former residences of the Medici family.

Today, the palace houses Florence’s city hall, but a portion of its interior is open to the public, including magnificent rooms adorned with paintings and frescoes.

The tour also includes a climb to the top of the palace tower for an amazing view.

You should book your skip-the-line ticket (+ audio guide) in advance by clicking here:

Palazzo Vecchio
Palazzo Vecchio – 3-Day Trip to Florence

D. The Museum of Bargello Palace

The Museum of Bargello Palace is just a few minutes away from Piazza della Signoria.

If you’ve had your fill of art for the day after visiting the Uffizi Gallery in the morning, you can just pass by.

But if you wish to visit, know that it contains several sculptures by Michelangelo and Donatello.

I can only recommend that you purchase your ticket for Bargello Palace in advance, using the button below:

Bargello Museum
Bargello Museum

E. The Basilica of Santa Croce

I suggest finishing this second day with a visit to the Basilica of Santa Croce.

In the world’s largest Franciscan church, you’ll find the tombs of some very famous Italian artists. Don’t miss the burials of Machiavelli, Dante, Galileo, and the famous Michelangelo.

In addition to the interior of the basilica, you can also wander around its inner garden, which features a blend of different architectural styles that are very impressive.

Voyage Tips - Advice

There are guided tours of the basilica offered in French.

You can book them by clicking on the button below:

Basilique Santa Croce
Basilica of Santa Croce – Visiting Florence in 72 Hours

Day Three – Best Things to Do in Florence

visiter Florence en 3 jours itinéraire jour 3
Florence in 3 Days Itinerary Day 3

Day 3 visits:

A. The Pitti Palace
B. The Boboli Gardens
C. The Bardini Gardens
D. Piazzale Michelangelo
E. Shopping in Florence

A. The Pitti Palace

For the last day of your 3-day Florence itinerary, I recommend starting with a visit to the Pitti Palace, the main residence of the Medici family from the 16th century onward.

The palace houses several galleries and museums:

  • The Palatine Gallery which includes about twenty rooms adorned with paintings by Botticelli, Caravaggio, or Raphael. If you want to book a guided tour of the Palatine Gallery, you need to click here.
  • The Gallery of Modern Art: Italian paintings and sculptures from Neoclassicism to the 20th century
  • The Costume Gallery with its collection of clothing from the 17th to 20th century
  • The Silver Museum featuring the Medici’s jewellery and precious objects
  • The Royal Apartments where you can admire period furniture and rich tapestries
  • The Boboli Gardens, which are next on the itinerary.
Voyage Tips - Advice

To enjoy skip-the-line access to the Pitti Palace, you have 2 options:

  • Priority Entrance Pitti Palace:

  • Combined Ticket Pitti Palace + Boboli Gardens:

Palais Pitti
The Pitti Palace, 3 Days in Florence

B. The Boboli Gardens

Continue your day with a stroll through the Boboli Gardens adjoining the Pitti Palace.

With its shady paths, fountains, and small ponds surrounded by sculptures, this immense Renaissance-style garden is perfect for a quiet bucolic walk.

The garden also houses the Porcelain Museum, located in a small pavilion next to the Neptune Fountain.

If you plan on visiting the Pitti Palace as well as the Boboli Gardens, I recommend booking this combined ticket:

If you just want access to the garden (without the Pitti Palace), it’s possible with this ticket:

jardin de Boboli
The Boboli Gardens

C. The Bardini Gardens

Since the ticket for the Boboli Gardens also gives access to the Bardini Gardens, it would be a shame to miss out.

Especially since it’s only a 5-minute walk from Boboli, by exiting at the top of the garden near the Forte Belvedere building.

The garden is very pleasant as it’s less frequented, and it offers especially stunning panoramic views of Florence and the Duomo.

jardin Bardini
The Bardini Gardens

D. Piazzale Michelangelo

Now head to the city’s most famous viewpoint: Piazzale Michelangelo.

It’s about a twenty-minute walk from the Bardini Gardens to get there.

It’s a must-visit spot on a 3-day Florence trip to take in the entire city. From there, you can admire Florence’s cathedral, the dome, the campanile, and the tower of Palazzo Vecchio.

I also recommend walking a bit further up, towards the church of San Miniato al Monte, if you want another viewpoint.

You can also pass by the monumental cemetery which is home to the tomb of Carlo Collodi, the author of the book Pinocchio.

Piazzale Michelangelo
Piazzale Michelangelo

E. Shopping in Florence

There’s nothing like a little shopping session to beautifully conclude your 3-day Florence holiday.

Alongside Rome and Milan, Florence is a much-loved destination for fashionistas. There are numerous international brand stores (Zara and H&M) as well as luxury labels like Prada and Gucci.

They are mostly located in Vigna Nuova street and Tornabuoni street, near the Palazzo Vecchio and Piazza della Republica.

You can then enjoy one last Italian meal at a good trattoria before heading back to your hotel.

Where to Stay in Florence

With all my advice and this itinerary, you now know how to visit Florence in 3 days!

But I can still help you with another essential step in planning your 72-hour Florence itinerary, booking your accommodation.

Due to high demand in Florence, hotels offering the best value sell out quickly. Therefore, I recommend booking your accommodation as far in advance as possible to have the best selection.

To assist you, I’ve prepared my selection of the city’s best hotels.

So, where to stay for these 3 days in Florence?

  • Plus Florence: This hostel is located just 1 km from the Piazza del Duomo. Dorm bed starting at €25, breakfast for €7.50. You can also stay in a double room, from €80 per night. Strong points: the pool, the terrace with a view of the dome, the comfort, and cleanliness of the rooms and dorms. A great affordable option for a 3-night stay in Florence!
  • Hotel St. James: Located near the Accademia Gallery. Spacious double room starting at €80 per night, breakfast included. Strong points: the ideal location, private parking, the warm welcome.
  • TSH Florence Lavagnini: Situated 15 minutes on foot from the cathedral. Modern and colorful double room starting at €95, breakfast for €12. Strong points: the rooftop with stunning views of Florence, the pool, the architecture and design, the services offered. Our favorite for its value for money in Florence!
  • c-hotels Ambasciatori: Located next to Santa Maria Novella Church. Cozy and ultra-comfortable double room from €160, breakfast for €10. Strong points: the superb location, the excellent breakfast, the friendliness of the staff. An excellent choice of where to stay in Florence!
  • Horto Convento: Situated 1 km from the Pitti Palace. Modern and tastefully decorated double room from €170, breakfast included. Strong points: the garden with terrace, the peacefulness, the delicious breakfast, the hotel’s charm.
  • NH Collection Firenze Porta Rossa: A 5-star hotel located 300 meters from Ponte Vecchio. Double room with elegant decor from €315. Strong points: the friendly staff, the great breakfast. Our recommendation for a luxury stay in Florence.
  • Four Seasons Hotel Firenze: This 5-star hotel is a 15-minute walk from the Uffizi Gallery and offers luxurious rooms blending modern elements with Renaissance features. From €750, breakfast for €48. Strong Points: the Spa, the Michelin-starred restaurant, the magnificent park. One of the best luxury hotels in Florence!
Four Seasons Hotel Firenze, the perfect choice for a luxury stay in Florence
Four Seasons Hotel Firenze, the perfect choice for a luxury stay in Florence

Visiting Florence in 3 Days with Family

Have you chosen to visit Florence for 3 days with your kids?

You can definitely follow this sightseeing itinerary. Since the places are not too far apart, everything is easily accessible on foot.

However, you might need to skip one or two museum visits during your 3-day family trip to Florence, as they might become boring for young children. Worth noting, most museums are free for children under 18.

Among activities and attractions, for a family stay, I especially recommend:

More Things to Do and See in Florence in 3 Days

Want to add or slightly change my suggested itinerary for visiting Florence in 3 days?

No problem, I then recommend that you read my complete guide to the city with all the things to do and see. It’s the best way to tailor your 3-day vacation in Florence to your preferences.

To read it, just click on this link: The Ultimate Guide for Visiting Florence.

And who knows, you might even want to spend more time in Florence.

Map of Your 3-Day Itinerary in Florence

To help you visualize your routes during these 3 days in Florence, I’ve created a map listing the places to visit day by day. You can display the legend of the map by clicking on the button at the top left with a small arrow. You can then view the routes for each day.

Going to Florence for 3 Days: Flight Prices

Florence has an international airport.

As flight prices to Italy can vary greatly, it’s a good idea to compare them as early as possible. To do this, you can use our flight comparison tool, in partnership with Skyscanner. This ensures you get the best rate.

Voyage Tips - Advice

Pisa Airport, being only an hour away from Florence by train, is also worth considering when comparing prices. Flight rates are generally lower for arrivals in Pisa.

Then, you can check the train schedules and book your train tickets to Florence by clicking the button below:

If you’re considering renting a car for your 3-day trip to Florence, you should compare rates on the Rentalcars.com website.

There, you’ll find all available car rental companies, and what’s more, cancellation or modification is free of charge!

Now you know how to visit Florence in 3 days!

If you need help planning your 3-day itinerary in Florence, feel free to ask me your questions in the comments.

Book your trip now and save money!

Italy travel Guides

You’re traveling in Italy? These articles will help you!

Discover all my articles about Italy: All my articles to help you plan your trip to Italy are listed there.

  • Rome in May: The definitive guide to plan your visit: weather, things to do, itineraries and more!
  • Rome in June: Guide + All my best tips

You’re using Pinterest? Here is the picture to pin!

Best places to visit in Florence in 3 days
Best places to visit in Florence in 3 days

Creator of the Voyage Tips blog, travel and photography lover. I give you all my best tips to plan your next trip.

Leave A Reply