This blog post was written and shared by Friend, Eric Fargo.
Most people arrive in Florence via train or airport. I arrived via train from Rome to Santa Maria Novella, the central train/tram station. My AirBnB host had told me the best way to get to the apartment was to take tram #2 and get off at Buonsignori. Welcome to Firenze. I immediately had to consult google translate so I could hear the name of the stop in Italian: BÔN SEEN YOURR Å. He was correct, my flat building was right across the tracks/street.
When I exited the tram, I immediately realized how easy it was to get around this city. The tram was the way to go for sure. At 1.50 euro for a 90 minute limit, this seemed a no-brainer. You can typically purchase tram tickets from automatic kiosks available at every stop on one side of the tracks or the other. Once you purchase your ticket and enter the tram, look for the yellow validation machine and validate your ticket.
Now, I didn’t see everyone validating tickets, but I did and saw many others. I would occasionally forget but was never questioned. Most of the people I saw not validating were school-aged people. Maybe it’s free for students or they have a phone app for validation.
I did find out a bit late in my trip that many tobacco/tabaccheria shops sold tram tickets for the same price as the kiosk. This was much more convenient for me because I could purchase several tickets at a time. I usually figured out how many tickets I needed for the day. The gentleman at the tabaccheria was extremely nice and very helpful. You can recognize if a Tabaccheria sells tram tickets by spotting this sign on the door.
Don’t be afraid to learn a bit of the language, even knowing a few words in instances like this can be helpful.
DAY TRIPPING FROM FLORENCE
Taking day trips from Florence’s main station Santa Maria Novella (SMN), is as easy and as quick as connecting to the internet. I only had my phone so I chose to purchase all my train tickets for day trips through Italia Rail. The website is easy to use, you just have to have a destination in mind. It gives you prices, times, and trains and the prices are very reasonable.
Between the tram and walking, you can get to most or all of Florence. I need more time to explore, 9 Days wasn’t enough for me.
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