5/20/16 – Fun in Florence!

Daily Update: Friday, May 20, 2016

I can’t think of a better way to spend a day than traveling through Italy.

We will be spending the next two days in Florence, exploring all the sights and rich history.

In our vast travels, we’ve already crossed 65 of Venice's 455 bridges. It’s been quite an adventure!

During our trip from Venice to Florence, we were welcomed with the sight of the Alps in the background. We were also able to see Dolomites! The scenery was as beautiful as you'd imagine.

Viewing the Duomo was absolutely breathtaking, and could easily be one of the most amazing things I’ve ever witnessed in my whole life. The pictures do not do it justice. Encrusted in pink, green, and white marble, it really is a sight to see. It also sat next to a beautiful bell tower.

Construction on the Duomo started in the 13th century by Arnolfo di Cambio, but the dome wasn't added until 15th century based on Filippo Brunelleschi’s design. It took nearly two centuries to complete!

Touring the Baptistery of San Giovanni was also incredible. Located across from the Duomo, babies would need to be baptized here before being allowed in the church. The architecture of the doors and statues were beautifully ornate, even though they are replicas. The authentic doors are preserved and located in the Duomo museum.

Named after St. John the Baptist, the Baptistery of San Giovanni was constructed in the fourth century. In 1128 the church was officially named the Baptistery of Florence. Known for its incredible doors, Andrea Pisano was commissioned to make the first bronze door in the 14th century. Other artists who worked on the famous doors include Lorenzo Ghiberti, who would later create a bronze apprenticeship program that taught Donatello.

We were also able to see a statue created by Michelangelo. It was his second to last sculpture—though he ultimately destroyed it because he wasn’t pleased with the marble. It was painstakingly restored piece-by-piece to preserve its design.

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