Best events in Florence this month May 2023

Here’s our round-up for May, 2023.

Spring is in the air and that sweet Tuscan heat is starting to seep through jacket sleeves. May is packed with activities to keep you active and entertained with art exhibitions, outdoor markets, gastronomic surprises, and much more.

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May 5-6

The Coronation of King Charles III

St. Mark’s English Church on via Maggio hosts events in celebration of the coronation of King Charles III. Bring your friends and battle it out at a UK trivia night on May 5. Join the Coronation Choir on May 6 and sing along in the celebration. Anyone 7 and over can learn the music during a rehearsal at 3pm to be prepared for the performance at 5pm. This performance will be in part of the Crowns and Gowns concert, which will feature performances by the children’s choir, adult choir, opera violin/piano duo and organ solo piano. Free entry for the celebration. Email


Starting with a special event on May 5, The British Institute hosts a Royal Tea Party. Leading up to the coronation of King Charles III the following day, tea will be served followed by a conversation between Simon Gammell and Bona Frescobaldi about the long history of the relationship between the British monarchy and the Frescobaldi family. The institute will also be live streaming the coronation on May 6 with free entrance.

May 4-6

La città dei giovani lettori

The City of Young Readers festival is dedicated to literature for children, teens and adolescents. The three-day program promises book readings, writing workshops, live painting, meetings with illustrators and other activities. All of the events are free without reservation.

May 4-6

The State of the Union

The State of the Union conference, now in its 13th edition, is a renowned annual summit for high-level reflection on the European Union. Titled Building Europe in Times of Uncertainty, the flagship event of the European University Institute will take place on May 4-6, unravelling into sessions that will offer diverse and exclusive content with the goal of influencing European Union decision-making.

May 5

CIAO. Discoteca Italiana

The perfect opportunity to let loose, Manifattura Tabacchi hosts a club night with a DJ set by C.D.I. Bring your friends and dance the night away with good music and vibes. Ticket prices range from 10 euro to 18 euro and can be purchased in advance online and on the door. 

Buy your tickets
May 5

Hand Signed Festival: Dylan Henner

Dylan Henner makes his way to Florence for a performance of his atmospheric music. With a love for American minimalism, the Londoner creates surprisingly sunny and playful sounds that combine synthetism and computer engineering with real-world elements. Henner will play some hits from his newest album You Will Always Be for audiences to enjoy. 

Buy your tickets
May 6


Curated by Gian Guido Grassi, this is an exhibition of site-specific installations spread throughout the city of Lucca. The alcoves of palazzos and churches along with other outdoor locations are the canvas for this urban art project that morphs culture, history and artistic tradition. The works of Moneyless, Sten&Lex, and Tellas will all be on display.

Artisanal Market

The season of outdoor markets has commenced and this is one not to miss. Visitors can gaze upon the works of 25 artisans specializing in jewelry, leather, silk, wicker basketry, cosmetics and more. Entrance is free for the market, but visitors can also join in on workshops for basketry, roping and crocheting on the Sunday. Reservations are required for the workshops and the cost to participate is 15 euro. 

May 6-27

Trees of Light

Luciano Sabadin hosts his first solo show in Florence curated by Francesca Sacchi Tommasi and Ilaria Maria d’Urbano. The show features 30 or so acrylic paintings depicting strong black and white contrasts. Sabadin initially began his creative journey through music and songwriting before switching over to painting after the pandemic.

May 7

Extraordinary Speakers

Florence-based life coach and motivation speaker Amira Makhlouf is the driving force behind this conference that enables participants to be a part of an inspiring and international safe space. Topics discussed are relatable to everyone and will cover issues related to work, self-confidence, adolescence and women-focused themes. The cost to attend is 35 euro.

Buy your tickets
May 7

Savonarola Antiquaria

This market only comes around once a month and is known for carrying an abundance of eclectic antique finds. Furniture, décor, jewelry and other miscellaneous trinkets are just a few of the treasures to be found. Find something unique to spruce up your space for the new season.

Coffee on the Rocks

Coffee and mixology collide at this caffeinated event. Coffee on the Rocks hosts an event dedicated to coffee and all of its boozy forms. Participants will go through a day of talks, tastings, and tours covering everything from water filtration, frozen coffee, and coffee cocktails. The event is free and reservations are required.

Book your spot

Firenze in Musica: The Wartburg Choir

The Wartburg Choir, coming all the way from Iowa, visits Florence for a choral concert. Under the direction of Lee Nelson, they will perform pieces by Bach, Giovanni Pierluigi da Palestrina, Jennings and others. Entrance is free and reservations are not required, however strongly encouraged. To reserve a seat, email to

May 11-June 30

The Season

New York University Florence (via Bolognese 120) is planning a busy program for the 17th edition of The Season. The events at Villa La Pietra will explore the wider currents of history and art, literature and music. Guests can enjoy lectures from artists, theatrical performances, and concerts. To RSVP, please send an email to,  or call +39 055 5007210.

Learn more
May 13

Bike ride for children in Haiti

The Tour de France will commence with its 111th edition in 2024 and will begin its route in Florence. Ayiti Cheri hosts a charitable bike ride spanning the first leg of the route from Florence to Rimini to raise funds for the children of the BRESMA orphanage in Port-au-Prince in Haiti. The ride is free and open to all with options of reduced distances for those who want to join even for just a few kilometers. 

Register here

Tasting Greve 2023

Wine lovers rejoice for a weekend in Chianti Classico filled with wine tasting. The members of the Greve in Chianti Grape Growers Association open their doors for an experience featuring 21 wineries to taste from. The cost to participate for both days is 28 euro and the cost to participate for one day is 20 euro.

Buy your tickets


Watch wheelchair tennis this May at hyperactive Tennis Club Limonaia as eight wheelchair and eight able-bodied players pick up their racquets and play doubles to raise awareness that disability is not always a barrier to sports. Their agility, skill and positive attitude will add a renewed perspective on life. Call Cinzia +39 338 2222748 or Daniele +39 340 9802143 for more information.

May 14

Spring Summer Jam

The Fortezza Skate Crew hosts a day for skaters. Check out the free skate lessons, sessions and contests for skaters of all abilities. This is a great opportunity for longtime skaters or anyone looking to learn a new skill, find their local skateboarding community and push some wood.

The Florentine Issue 300 Party

Raise a glass to The Florentine’s longevity as an independent magazine and hang out with Florence’s international community.
Includes light bites, a glass of Ruffino wine and a small donation to a local charity.

Get your ticket now!

Deejay Ten

The popular radio station Radio Deejay is back with its annual race. The 10km race welcomes anyone aged 16 years and older to run and the 5km race welcomes people of all ages and abilities. Registration costs 20 euro for the 10km run, 18 euro for the 5km run for participants 13 years of age and older, and 10 euro for children up until 12 years old.

May 23

Andrea Battistoni

Joining the Orchestra della Toscana is Verona-born director Andrea Battistoni. Becoming the youngest director ever hired by La Scala in 2012 when he was only 25 years old, he now leads the Tokyo Philharmonic. His return to Florence will entail a tribute to Luciano Berio on the 20th anniversary of his death. Full price tickets cost 17 euro.

May 26-28

The Angel Academy of Art student exhibition

The Angel Academy of Art, one of Florence’s leading institutes for teaching realist art in the tradition of the Great Masters, will open its doors to the public with an exhibition of works created by students over recent years. The show will shine a spotlight on works by students from Germany, Bulgaria, Austria, Finland, China, the Philippines, Australia, Mexico and Hawaii, who all came to Florence for a three-year programme at The Angel Academy of Art.

May 26-28

Festival della Bistecca

Sink your teeth into some steak at this three-day meaty affair. Organized by the Florence Steak Festival Association, this second edition will promise booth after booth of Tuscan farmers, chefs, masterclasses and more, all centered on Florence’s beloved T-bone steak. 

May 28

Pimp my Vintage

Expect street food, cold drinks and good music along with amazing vintage finds at this riverside market. Complete your spring/summer wardrobe the sustainable way with curated and affordable vintage goodies.

Every Thursday

Art in Mixology

Join Irene Bar every Thursday throughout the month of May for cocktail nights with live music. Head barman Federico Galli reinterprets the art of Florence through his specialty drinks that are inspired by renowned artists who have left their marks on the city. Some of the artists these creative cocktails are inspired by include Olafur Eliasson, Antonio Signorini, Igor Mitoraj, and Tony Cragg. The cost is 18 euro and includes a cocktail and cicchetti.


Ultravox Festival

The jackets are being shed and umbrellas are opening up as summertime heat is just around the corner. The Cascine Park transforms into a warm weather hotspot once again with the return of the Ultravox FestivalGuests can enjoy a range of themed festivals featuring music concerts, film and sports screenings, entertainment for the little ones and delicious catering. All Ultravox Festival events are free with a reserved parking lot on viale dell’Aeronautica for those arriving by car.

Until May 13


Salento-born artist Adriana Luperto introduces her new exhibition featuring a series of oil paintings. Many of her works depict natural elements and landscapes, all with a sense of enchantment and a genuine twilight element. Taking inspiration from the sensibilities of a Joseph Conrad novel, there is a transitional element to her work that visitors understand when looking at her paintings.

Until June 5

Watching and Waiting

Cuba-Born artist Enrique Martínez Celaya opens his sculpture exhibition Watching and Waiting at the Museo Marino Marini. Celaya originally comes from a scientific background and has experimented with several other art mediums such as photography, videography, and writing. He resides in Los Angeles and this is his first show in Italy. He will feature his sculptural works from 2005-2023.

Until June 25

Explore, Planet Earth

National Geographic returns to Pisa’s foremost exhibition space for a major photographic show that revolves around the exploration of Planet Earth. Starting with a set of images that National Geographic’s photographers captured to document the beauty of our ecosystems, the show zooms in on what we know (and don’t know) about the planet where we live, as well as the human impact on the environment over the millennia.

Until September 5

Luca Giordano-Maestro Barocco a Firenze

More than 50 works connected to the Gallery of Mirrors and Biblioteca Riccardiana will make up this major exhibition at Palazzo Medici Riccardi on Baroque master Luca Giordano (1634-1705). Expect a series of sketches on loan from the National Gallery in London as well as other important artworks from private collections in Europe and the United States, the Uffizi and the Opera del Duomo Museum in Siena, among others.

Until November 19

Kimono: reflections of Art between Japan and the West

Prato’s Textile Museum introduces an exhibition of 50 kimonos from the first half of the 20th century. This show documents the evolution of economic and cultural relations between Europe and Japan, which began in the mid-sixteenth century and over time became a major influence on fashion, art and culture. Another section of the exhibition also provides an in-depth study of traditional textiles and decorative techniques for kimonos and references to European artworks from artists like Matisse, Klimt and Kandinsky.


Community Events

Arte al Sole                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

Arte al Sole hosts two children’s art classes this month at Palazzo San Niccolò. The first on May 6 is dedicated to creating a Painted Italian Versal Letter on Canvas. In this workshop, kids will look at examples of designs from Florence’s creative past and take inspiration to paint a one-of-a-kind decorated Italian versal letter on canvas. The second class on May 13 is a Renaissance-inspired illustrated botanical book, where kids will look at historical herbariums and watch the instructor demonstrate drawing and lettering techniques. Both classes are for children aged 6-14 and the cost is 60 euro per person; all materials included.

Female Arts Florence

Join FAF on May 6 for a course on papermaking at the FAF Contemporary Art Gallery. Participants will use natural coloring techniques on recycled paper to make a pulp that they will turn into handmade sheets. Learn a sustainable technique and create something beautiful. 

St. Mark’s English Church

St. Mark’s English Church on via Maggio hosts events in celebration of the coronation of King Charles III. Bring your friends and battle it out at a UK trivia night on May 5. Join the Coronation Choir on May 6 and sing along in the celebration. Anyone 7 and over can learn the music during a rehearsal at 3pm to be prepared for the performance at 5pm. This performance will be in part of the Crowns and Gowns concert, which will feature performances by the children’s choir, adult choir, opera violin/piano duo and organ solo piano. Free entry for the celebration. Email

Children’s Lending Library

Join the Children’s Lending Library on via Rucellai throughout May for Storytime. On May 4, children can enjoy a reading of Little Bear, followed by Brother Eagle Sister Sky on May 11, Spring Story on May 18 and Frog & Toad on May 25. These nature-inspired reads are a great way to welcome in the spring weather and get the little ones interested in fun, nature-filled books.

The British Institute of Florence

Starting with a special event on May 5, The British Institute hosts a Royal Tea Party. Leading up to the coronation of King Charles III the following day, tea will be served followed by a conversation between Simon Gammell and Bona Frescobaldi about the long history of the relationship between the British monarchy and the Frescobaldi family. The institute will also be live streaming the coronation on May 6 with free entrance. On May 8, Morgan Fiumi speaks with US Consul General in Florence, Ragini Gupta, as part of the latest Lungarno Chats series. Music will fill the halls on May 11 with a cello and piano recital by Roger Low and Scott Faigen. Soon after on May 15, the Meet the Author series continues with John Hooper’s The Italians. Simon Gammell will chair the event with a book club-style discussion of the book and then broaden into a wider chat with the author. May 25 guests can enjoy a Mascarade Opera with singers performing in the library. 

Cultural Salon

The Cultural Salon hosts two exciting events in May. Kicking off the month on May 2, best-selling author Lisa Clifford hosting a writers’ workshop at Società Canottieri. The cost for this event is 20 euro and includes an aperitivo. Switching gears, the group hosts the Cheese Please wine and cheese pairing on May 16 at Formaggioteca Terroir with expert and owner Rebecca Gouttenoire. The cost is 45 euro and includes the tasting of five Italian cheeses and three Italian wines. 

Cinema Astra

Cinema Astra hosts a special event on May 12 with a screening and presentation of the film Signs of Love (2022) directed by Clarence Fuller. Stars Hopper Penn and Zoe Sidel join the cinema to talk about the film. Signs of Love won the first edition of the Corbucci Prize in 2022 and Cinema Astra screens the film in English. On May 25, the cinema will screen Dalíland starring Academy Award winner Ben Kingsley. This film is a biopic of Salvador Dalí, one of the 20th century’s most controversial artists.