Florence is the capital city of the region of Tuscany in Italy and has a population of about 366,500. The city was the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance and Opera was invented in Florence, so it is considered a cultural, artistic and architectural center.
Florence is filled with many churches, like San Miniato al Monte, San Lorenzo, Santa Maria Novella, then there are the art galleries and two superb collections of sculpture, the Bargello and the Museum of the Works of the Duomo. Florence is proud of over 80 museums.
All in all, this city offers plenty of choices for each type of a traveler.
Warnings & Dangers in Florence
OVERALL RISK : LOW
The only possible risk in Florence is the pickpocket risk as in any other city frequented by tourists. However, the overall risk is low and there are almost no reports of serious crime acts.
TRANSPORT & TAXIS RISK : MEDIUM
In Florence, it is difficult to hail a cab from the street and be aware that most taxis do not accept credit card for payment, so you need to have cash with you. Taxis in Florence are relatively expensive and it might be dangerous to hail them late at night. Only use officially licensed taxis with a taxi sign on the roof and make sure the meter in the taxi is turned on. Pedestrians should take care at Zebra crossings, because vehicles might not stop. You can drive in Italy with your driving license and other necessary documentation.
PICKPOCKETS RISK : HIGH
Pickpocket risk in Florence is at the very high level and petty crime like bag snatching in the city center and public transport are common. In order to protect your valuables, use a hotel safe where possible and do not take too much money with you.
NATURAL DISASTERS RISK : LOW
Some parts of Italy are prone to minor tremors and earthquakes, while forest fires remain a risk throughout the summer, which can be dangerous and unpredictable. No other natural hazard risk is common.
MUGGING RISK : LOW
There are no reports of mugging and kidnapping in Florence, but tourists should be vigilant as in any other major city and avoid wandering the streets at night, especially in dangerous areas.
TERRORISM RISK : MEDIUM
Taking into account the fact that terrorists are likely to try to carry out attacks in most of Europe, Italy, as well as Florence, might be a target. There are isolated cases of domestic terrorism. The Italian authorities have made a number of arrests of individuals who have links to Daesh and other extremist groups.
SCAMS RISK : MEDIUM
Scam risk exists in Florence and even though it is of medium level, you should pay attention to “gold ring” tricks, fake petitions and strangely looking people trying to help you.
WOMEN TRAVELERS RISK : LOW
Female travelers can feel free in Florence since it is very safe and there have been no reports of a female being sexually assaulted or attacked in any other way, especially a foreigner.
So... How Safe Is Florence Really?
Florence is very touristic place throughout the whole year and tourists attract pickpockets and purse snatchers especially in crowds around Santa Maria Novella train station. There are also some types of beggars that might distract you while at the same time another thief steals your wallet or phone. Do not pay attention to them and never pull out any money around them.
Demonstrations may occur and you should avoid any protests, or gatherings. Pay attention not to leave food or drinks unattended because victims of spiked drinks have been robbed.
Florence is small but you must be very careful when walking, since many of the locals drive mopeds on the wrong side of the road or on the sidewalk.
The fact that Florence is an amazing place for artists, nature-lovers and for those studying the history and architecture, it is definitely worth visiting.
- Visas - For travelers that possess Schengen, visas are not required and they can stay in Italy as long as they want, while other travelers can visit this country for 90 days only without a visa. For longer says, you are required to obtain a visa in the Italian Embassy. Your passport is a documentation that should be valid during your stay.
- Currency - The official currency in Italy is the Euro. Even though it is considered a cheaper city than the rest of the European major cities, you will need approximately 70€ per day including accommodation. Exchange money only in banks or legitimate Bureaux de Change.
- Weather - The climate in Italy is hot and dry and the period from June to September is the greatest. Florence can be visited year-long, but the peak season is summer. If you are not fond of crowds, travel to Florence in spring or autumn.
- Airports - Florence is served by Amerigo Vespucci international airport which is very close to the city. Much cheaper flights to Florence can be found at Pisa airport. Other major airports are in Rome, Milan and Naples.
- Travel Insurance - Make sure that you have a travel insurance policy before starting any journey. Even though Florence is not so dangerous city, accidents might happen and your insurance will cover medical costs or baggage lost.