Here are some tips for making the most of your visit the to the Uffizi Gallery in Florence.
The Uffizi Gallery in Florence was designed by Giorgio Vasari in the mid-sixteenth century to house the 13 most important Florentine courts, called ‘uffici’. Today it houses 90 museum rooms with some of the world’s most important and famous paintings. Works by Giotto, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, Caravaggio and Botticelli, as well as numerous Flemish and Dutch paintings are arranged in chronological order for an exciting journey through art history.
It should go without saying that in order to fully enjoy the museum, it’s best to plan ahead as the vast collection can be as overwhelming as the long queue–something for which Florence is infamous–are tedious. So, here are 8 tips for visiting the Uffizi Gallery.
Galleria degli Uffizi
1) Choose the day and time of your visit in advance
The Uffizi Gallery is open Tuesday to Sunday from 8:15 am to 6:50 pm, and is always closed on Mondays, 1 January, 1 May and 25 December. It’s always high season in Florence, and everyday people from all over the world line up to visit the Uffizi Gallery. Therefore, it’s best to buy skip-the-line tickets for the Uffizi in advance for the date and time of your choice to avoid having to wait in the long queues. This will give you more time to admire the Uffizi Gallery collection.
2) Allot at least a half-day for your visit
When planning your trip to Florence, make sure you don’t have a busy program the day you visit the Uffizi Gallery. Plan to spend at least half a day inside the Museum, or even the whole day. The collection is huge, and the works displayed on the walls definitely deserve more than a quick, hasty glance.
“Primavera”, Botticelli’s celebrated painting on display at the Uffizi
3) Travel lightly
Carrying a small bag with only the most indispensable items is not only easier on the back, but also a requirement. Oversized bags must be checked in the cloakroom, so travel light!
4) Leave the camera at home
Taking photographs inside the Uffizi Gallery is not permitted, even without a flash. You should leave your camera equipment at home and settle for your phone (which must be kept silent during the entire visit) should you want to snap some city shots from the first-floor gallery windows.
The corridors of the Uffizi
5) Wear comfortable shoes
This might sound trivial, but remember that you will spend many hours in the museum walking from one gallery to another to see painting after painting. Prioritize comfort!
6) Plan your visit
It is impossible to see the whole Uffizi Gallery collection…and come out of there in one piece. Some paintings are more important than others, and some works will simply attract your interest and attention more than others. Before visiting the museum, make note of the works you absolutely don’t want to miss. Or consider touring the museum with an expert guide for an even more unforgettable visit.
7) Take a well-deserved break
There are some benches to be found within the Uffizi, particularly in the first section, along the corridor windows, and inside some of the rooms, such as the Botticelli Room. So, you can admire the works while you rest. If you need a real break, head to the cafeteria located at the end of the galleries on the first floor.
8) Take advantage of combined tickets to visit other unmissable Florentine attractions
Pro tip: Use your Uffizi Gallery ticket to visit the Palatine Gallery, Royal Apartments, Treasury of the Grand Dukes, Modern Art Gallery, Fashion and Costume Museum, temporary exhibitions at Palazzo Pitti, and the splendid Boboli Gardens with the Porcelain Museum, Bardini Garden and other exhibitions.