An August with gusto in Florence

Day-by-day ideas for a relaxed month in the Renaissance city

Mary Gray
July 6, 2017 - 12:36

Florentine August is never chock-full of scheduled events, so we decided to corral any cool things on the calendar into one day-by-day guide. But on the dates when there are no “big ticket” happenings in town, we are providing more spontaneous suggestions on how to spend your time. Embrace the ease of summer in the city!


Quiet streets in August | Ph. Mary Gray


August 1
Kick off the month with a concert and aperitif at Villa Bardini (tel. 055 20066206 to book). 

Dance your way to Day 1 of the Cecchetti International Classical Ballet Competition, on at the Obihall until August 5.

Breathe in Florence’s Jewish culture at this evening’s Balagan Café event (8pm TBC, Florence Synagogue, via Farini 6). 


The limonaia at Villa La Pietra


Venture up to Villa La Pietra (NYU Florence) for a free 9pm concert—it’s the final event in annual interdisciplinary festival The Season. Booking required ( 

Escape the center and head to Scandicci for an “Itinera” excursion and tasting in Podere del Leone. Booking required (tel. 055 768982).

Catch a free film in the courtyard of the Museo Novecento. Andrzej Żuławski’s “The Diable” will screen at 8.45pm. 

Indulge in street eats at of-the-moment outdoor venue Molo5 (lungarno Colombo). 

Get your fashion fix at the Salvatore Ferragamo Museum (piazza Santa Trinita), which is currently hosting an exhibition exploring the designer’s 1927 return to Italy.

Zen out with “beachfront” yoga from 7.30pm at Easy Living (below piazza Poggi). 

Dance your heart out and feast on free pasta and watermelon at the Notte di San Lorenzo party in piazza San Lorenzo (show up around 9pm if it’s food you’re after). Alternatively, let David Krakauer, Zeno de Rossi and Alfonso Santimone take you on a journey through traditional Jewish music (see August 3 for location info). 

Mingle with other beach-spurners at the opening day of the music festival Tuttapposto a Ferragosto, a favorite at the Giardino dell’ArteCultura (the clever summer moniker for the Giardino dell’Orticultura at via Vittorio Emanuele II 4). A blues and soul duo will perform from 7pm. (Continues every night until August 20—same time, same place!) 


Serre Torrigiani in Piazzetta


Pop by the urban garden of Serre Torrigiani in Piazzetta to hear live music from FirenzeClassica while you sip on something summery (piazza dei Tre Re off via Calzaiuoli, from 7pm). 

Take a four-legged friend out to the Sunday afternoon “Dog Bar” event (5pm weekly) held at summer venue Parco dell’Albereta (entrance from piazza Ravenna). 


Le Pavoniere, Le Cascine | Ph. Rachael Harper


Time for a dip! See TF's suggestions for swimming pools here

15 (Ferragosto)
Put together a team (minimum three, maximum 10 members) and take part in a sandcastle competition at Easy Living on the Arno “beach” ( to sign up). 

Swap out your morning coffee for a cone of caffè-flavored gelato, because it’s August in the city and you only live once. 

Take a leisurely amble through the Boboli Gardens, noting Helidon Xhixha’s monumental sculptures along the way. 


Ph. Cassie Prena


Break a sweat and be rewarded with views: take an alterna-route to piazzale Michelangelo, departing from Porta Romana—or power walk to Bellosguardo, where you might get the panorama to yourself. 

Climb the Torre della Zecca, Florence’s former mint, hardly ever open to the public. Booking required; guided visits take place every 30 minutes between 5 and 8pm ( or tel. 055 2768224). All booked up by the time you read this? Soak up some music from Quartetto Auris on the steps of Santo Spirito (10.30pm). /

Do some summer reading and support authors with ties to Florence. Have a look at TF’s literary picks.


Ytalia at Forte Belvedere | Ph. Andrea Paoletti


Hike up to Forte Belvedere to take in the best views of Florence, not to mention Ytalia. Energy Thought Beauty: Everything is Connected, a striking contemporary art exhibition. 

Make your way to Campo di Marte’s lively summer venue, LIGHT – Il Giardino di Marte.

Call your mother (it’s probably been too long). All caught up? Attempt snagging some last-minute deals on household goods or clothes in the final days of saldi (sales) season. 

Listen to “Love Duets” at 9pm at St. Mark’s English Church—arias and duets from La Traviata, La Boheme, Madame Butterfly and more. 


25 Build your perfect panzanella. Try a TF twist on this Tuscan classic.

Hear Italian-American Freddie Maguire and his Acoustic Blues Trio from 7pm at the Giardino dell’ArteCultura (via Vittorio Emanuele II 4). 

Enjoy art house cinema vibes in the courtyard of the Museo Novecento during a free screening of Hirokazu Kore’eda’s “Nobody Knows” 8.45pm, Or sift through antiques and other treasures at the former Ciompi market now held in piazza Ghiberti.  

28 Try one of Florence’s most bizarre gelato flavors. See TF's gelato guide for some suggestions.

29 Dive into the Da Vinci Experience at the deconsecrated church of Santo Stefano al Ponte—see reproductions of the Renaissance man’s works in video mapping.

30 Get in touch with your poetic side: today the international poetry festival Voci Lontane, Voci Sorelle opens with a 6.30pm event held in English at St. Mark’s Church. Alicia Ostriker and Elisa Biagini will give talks and readings related to their new works (Waiting for the Light and The Plant of Dreaming, respectively). 

31 Mourn the loss of lazy summer days as September approaches (but first, treat yourself to an Aperol Spritz all’aperto in your piazza of choice).

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