Shhhh! It’s a secret (The Secret Bakery in Florence)

This once secret, now not-so-secret, bakery is still one of those really fun things to “discover” in Florence (its address, not that it matters, is Via del Canto Rivolto, 2). At 2 am there is nothing better than a cornetto alla crema (cream filled croissant). Tip: keep quiet, be ready with your order, and have your money at hand. The woman who owns this place will kick you out if you take too long to ask for your pastry of choice.

Because this little street is very rarely listed on maps of Florence, we are including a map that even gives you directions from Via de’Benci. Continue reading…

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Italian clowns…i think

There are a plethora of street performers in Florence. There is the wind guy. He specializes in looking as if he is being blown by wind (it looks cooler than it sounds). There is pirate/flag guy. I really never figured out what he was supposed to be but he looked amazing posing precariously on the side of the Arno.

Some of Florence's Street performers

There is the Charlie Chaplin guy. He has been in Florence for years and always does the same act, something that only really works in tourist cities like Florence and New York. I still get a kick out of watching him if only to see what unsuspecting tourists he pulls from the crowd and how he manages to communicate to them what to do. One night in particular that I remember watching his act the crowd was apparently not living up to his standards and he told them (in Italian) that he wanted them to piss off. It was very out of character because otherwise he seems like a very nice guy.
 
These lovely gents were all fixtures of the city. They lived there, worked there, slept there, and other things that I choose not think about too. I used to watch Charlie Chaplin drink his beer and put on his makeup at the same time at the bar by my house. He would put on his little moustache while helping the guy who dressed up like cupid and stood by the Uffizi giving out kisses and pictures for Euro. However, the best performers I ever saw in Florence were only there for two nights, two hilarious and glorious nights. Continue reading…

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Things to do PART III: Nightlife in Florence 101

A part of getting to know any city is finding out what it does when the rest of the world is sleeping. Here are some tips and my favorite spots in Florence for entertainment, libation, and general nighttime merry making.

**TIPS**
There are a ton of places in the city to go. Some have more Italians and some have more Americans. Unless you speak Italian it can be hard at the posh Italian places but there are some great spots where both tourists and Italians go and enjoy themselves.

Oh also, there is something wonderful in Italy called Aperativo. Learn this word. This is the genius idea that bars should provide snacks for their paying customers. Only sometimes these “snacks” are full-on meals. Once Americans caught wind of this phenomenon they quickly learned that they could drink what they would otherwise, while eating for free. Since this often meant bars had to provide more and more food they have either stopped all together or started charging for it. But the charge can be minimal so it is still really worth it!

Now onto my favorite spots… Continue reading…

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