Tourists from all over the world visit Florence every year for the works of art in its museums and its many churches with their characteristic façades. Especially in fine weather, however, the city on the Arno offers the opportunity to enjoy its views and also many artistic masterpieces in the open air in its many gardens: the Boboli Garden is certainly the most famous, to which are added the Rose Garden, with sculptures by Jean Michel Folon, and the Iris Garden, both near Piazzale Michelangelo. Botany enthusiasts will find the Giardino dei Semplici and the Orti Dipinti community garden, while cinema lovers at the Giardino dell’Orticoltura will retrace the steps of some scenes from ‘Amici miei – II atto’ by Mario Monicelli (1982) and ‘Sotto una buona stella’ by Carlo Verdone (2014).
Florence, tickets for the Boboli Gardens
It is always good to buy tickets for the Boboli Gardens well in advance, as this is one of the most popular destinations for those visiting Florence. And how could it be otherwise? It is in fact one of the earliest examples of an Italian garden, built between the 16th and 19th centuries, initially with a Renaissance layout, to which new spaces were later added in step with the times.
It is located behind Palazzo Pitti and, to avoid long waits under the sun in Piazza Pitti, a reservation for the Boboli Gardens is strongly recommended. Take your time to stroll leisurely through the avenues of this veritable museum en plein air: its 45 hectares are dotted with works of art, such as Giambologna’s Fountain of the Ocean or Giorgio Vasari’s Grotta Grande.
Buying tickets online for the Boboli Garden allows you to skip the queue and also have access to the nearby Bardini Garden, as well as the Porcelain Museum, which is located in a building inside the garden itself. The garden is also accessible to wheelchair users and, given its size, the last entrance is an hour before closing time.
The opening hours of the Boboli Gardens are Monday to Sunday from 8:15 to 19:10 and can be accessed by showing your ticket from your smartphone at the Palazzo Pitti ticket office. The audio guide (available in six languages) can be hired on site. Due to the artistic nature of this park-museum, dogs are not allowed to enter and no bags or suitcases are allowed.
Boboli, the gardens of the Pitti Palace
The Boboli Garden is located behind Palazzo Pitti and was designed when the palace was inhabited by the Medici family, who made it their residence from the mid-16th century. The palace was built in 1458 as the home of the banker Luca Pitti and during the period of Florence as capital it was also a royal residence (1865-1870), until Victor Emmanuel III, then King of Italy, donated it to the State in 1919.
The gardens, whose design according to Renaissance principles of order and geometry began with the Medici, as we have seen, were initially a gift from Cosimo I de’ Medici to his consort, Eleonora of Toledo.
To visit the Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens, a combined ticket can be purchased, which will include:
- entrance to the Pitti Palace
- a visit to the Palatine Gallery, with works by Titian, Raphael, Rubens, Bronzino still arranged according to the tastes of their former owners
- the Royal Apartments
- the Gallery of Modern Art
- the Treasury of the Grand Dukes
- the Boboli Gardens
- the Porcelain Museum
- the Bardini Garden
Both the Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens are wheelchair-accessible and tickets entitle visitors to priority access. When purchasing tickets, the option with free cancellation by midnight of the day before the visit can also be selected.
The interior of the Pitti Palace, however, covers 32,000 square metres: a veritable palace! If you also add the Boboli Gardens, the visit could last days and days. To avoid having to choose what to see in the Pitti Palace, and to enjoy an exhaustive tour of the palace and gardens, you can choose a two-hour guided tour. The meeting with the guide is 15 minutes before the tour time in front of Eataly; you can also book a private tour for small groups and you can choose to do it in seven different languages (Italian, English, French, Spanish, German, Portuguese or Russian). The ticket can be cancelled with a refund up to 24 hours in advance.
Visiting the Boboli Gardens and the Uffizi Gallery
Palazzo Pitti, with its garden, was, in the time of the Medici, connected to Palazzo Vecchio via the so-called Vasari Corridor, a passageway that also crosses the Uffizi and Ponte Vecchio. With a combined ticket for the Uffizi Gallery and the Boboli Gardens, it will be possible to visit these two places that are so significant for Florence.
One of the most important museums in Florence, the Uffizi Gallery houses some of the most important works from the Middle Ages to the 20th century. From religious works by Giotto, Cimabue and Simone Martini to the most famous works by Botticelli, such as the ‘Birth of Venus’ the ‘Primavera‘, and, next to the latter, the small but no less important ‘Calumny by Apelle’. But that’s not all: visitors can also see works by Caravaggio, such as ‘Bacchus’, Leonardo Da Vinci, Michelangelo and Raphael. The Uffizi is a unique and unmissable place, not only for the works of art inside, but also for its horseshoe-shaped architectural structure.
The museum is also wheelchair-accessible, the ticket entitles the visitor to priority admission (for which there is a separate entrance) and a cancellation and refund option can be chosen by 11:59 p.m. the day before the visit, which cannot, however, be rescheduled.
Unlike the Boboli Garden, which is open daily, the Uffizi is open Tuesday to Sunday from 8:15 am to 6:30 pm, while it is closed on Mondays.