Palazzo Vecchio

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5 Architectural and Historical Features of Palazzo Vecchio

Palazzo Vecchio is one of Florence's premier museums, where you can explore many different layers of Italian history since Roman times.

  • Roman ruins

    1. Roman ruins

    Although only accessible from underground - the Palazzo was built directly on top of it - the ruins of a Roman theater testify to this building's age.

  • Tower of Palazzo Vecchio

    2. Tower of Palazzo Vecchio

    At 95 meters tall, this tower is the definitive symbol of Florence and absolutely the best place to take your pictures of the city's charming buildings.

  • Medieval Fortress

    3. Medieval Fortress

    There's more to the fortress than the Tower. Construction of the fortress began in 1299 under Arnolfo di Cambio. Today its battlements and sturdy stone structure symbolize political potence from times gone by.

  • Salone dei Cinquecento

    4. Salone dei Cinquecento

    This was built as the grandest room - originally intended to serve as the seat of the Great Council. Now it serves as the centerpiece for anyone's visit.

  • Renaissance chambers

    5. Renaissance chambers

    The maze of chambers with artwork and decorated ceilings by Michelangelo, among other prominent Renaissance artists, is not to be missed - you won't have seen anything like it quite on this scale!

Frequently asked questions about Palazzo Vecchio

What are the top things to do in Palazzo Vecchio this week?

The top things to do in Palazzo Vecchio are:

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Which tours in Palazzo Vecchio are taking additional COVID-19 precautions?

These experiences in Palazzo Vecchio are taking additional COVID-19 precautions:

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Planning Your Visit

  • Rain check

    If rain is in the forecast, access to the Tower of Palazzo Vecchio will be suspended for safety reasons.

  • Opening times

    Winter opening times for the tower are limited compared to summer (or high season), so if you're visiting between October and March, make sure to get there early in the day.

  • Don't overdo it

    The way to the top of the tower is 418 steps, so don't attempt to climb if it may put your health at risk - there is no elevator.

  • Stay sun-safe

    On sunny days - and even when the sun's behind a cloud! - it's important to cover up with sunscreen. And even more so because you're nearly 100 meters closer to the sun!

Good to know

  • When should I visit?
    Open October - March, 9:00AM to 7:00PM. April - September, 9:00AM to 11:00PM. Special opening hours on Thursdays from 9:00AM to 2:00PM.
  • Is it expensive?
    Museum admission: 10euros. Tower and Battlements: 10euros. Discount available for students.
  • Will I need a guide?
    Free to explore on your own or find a guided tour and receive insight into the many layers of history present.
  • How to get there
    Located in the center of Florence at the Piazza della Signoria.
  • Additional information

    • As a top sight for Florence, be prepared for a bit of a wait to get in. If you get the Firenze card, you can skip the lines and get to the front.

    • The steps outside the museum serve for a perfect spot to rest before or after your visit and take in prime Florence people watching and occassional street performances in the Piazza.

Other Sightseeing Options in Palazzo Vecchio

Want to discover all there is to do in Palazzo Vecchio? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about Palazzo Vecchio

Overall rating

4.5 / 5

based on 4,979 reviews

We had a great guide who gave us a lot of information about the history of the palace and of Venice since the palace was erected. He was especially well educated in art history and pointed us to the most interesting spots. We would have missed many of them without his help. Besides the statues and paintings, we were most impressed with the building itself and its history in connecdtion with the history of the city. We were truly impressed to see for the first time the original painting of Machiavelli which is so well known from the title cover of his most famous book. We were very grateful for the competent guide.

Easy to book and easy to find the meeting point. Our guide Leonardo was a character and very friendly. We could have walked to all the places we saw but it was so much easier being driven! Just beware - the road quality is awful so it’s a bumpy ride! Well worth booking.

Excellent day with superb guide who knew everything about her home city with a superb understanding of art and history. if you only have a day in Florence choose this tour.

Amazing tour with Mohammed! He was very kind and all his explanations were precious! I had a great time. This is the best way to discover the city!

It was fantastic. Mind you there was only the 3 of us due to Covid-19. The guide was passionate and knowledgable and very friendly.