(Florence, Tuscany, Italy)
There are many quality museums spread around the city of Florence, being packed with Tuscan treasures and artefacts. The Istituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza (Science Museum) on the Piazza Giudici is certainly one for all ages and is just a short walk from both the Galleria degli Uffizi and the Accademia Dei Georgofili.
In particular, the Museo Archeologico (National Archeological Museum of Florence) is one to look out for and is located on the Via della Colonna, near to the imposing Italian Renaissance architecture of the Ospedale degli Innocenti (Hospital of the Innocents). Officially founded in 1870 and opened by King Victor Emmanuel II, the Museo Archeologico is known for its Etruscan rooms and countless ancient artefacts, which include the 2nd-century BC sarcophagus of Laerthia Seianti and the 4th-century BC sarcophagus of the Amazons, as well as the famous bronze lion named the 'Chimera of Arezzo', which is believed to date back to 400 BC.
Other notable Florence museums include the Casa di Dante (Dante's House), the Museo e Istituto di Preistoria 'Paolo Graziosi' and the Museo dell'Opera di Santa Croce, amongst many others.
Istituto e Museo di Storia della Scienza (Science Museum)
Address: Piazza Giudici 1, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 265 311
With an enormous number of original pieces numbering almost 5,000 exhibits, the displays include a collection of scientific devices and instruments used from 1583 until the mid 18th-century, experimental instruments and many other interesting historical objects. Many of the exhibits were used to establish the Imperial Royal Museum of Physics and Natural History, by Pietro Leopoldo di Lorena in 1775.
Open hours: Monday, Wednesday to Friday - 09:30 to 18:00, Tuesday and Saturday - 09:30 to 13:00, Sunday - 10:00 to 18:00
Admission: charge, free to children under six years old
Museo e Istituto di Preistoria 'Paolo Graziosi'
Address: Via Sant Egidio 21, Florence, Italy
This museum contains many important, ancient collections that date from the pre-Stone Age. Exhibits include stone instruments, bone, copper, arms, pottery, faunal, botanical specimens and many other fascinating artifacts. The displays provide a real insight into how our distant ancestors lived, hunted and farmed. The museum is located in the Town Hall of the Oblates and was originally founded in 1954.
Open hours: Monday - 14:00 to 17:00, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday - 09:30 to 12:30, Tuesday and Thursday - 09:30 to 16:30
Casa di Dante (Museum of Dante's House)
Address: Via Santa Margherita 1, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 219 416
Probably one of the most famous and admired monuments in the whole of Florence, the museum of Dante's house is full of important documents, photographs and various works by the famous artist Dante. Located in the medieval area of Via Dante Alighieri, the museum celebrates and remembers the life and works of Dante, who was born in Florence in 1265.
Open hours: daily, April to January - 10:00 to 18:00, February to March - 10:00 to 16:00
Admission: charge, free to children under 10 years old
Museo Archeologico (National Archeological Museum)
Address: Via della Colonna 38, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 23575
The museum is housed in a beautiful palazzo which was built in 1620 by Giulio Parigi and has exhibited outstanding collections of Etruscan, Egyptian, Greek, and Roman artifacts for more than 100 years. The second floor is dedicated to Greek vases and includes the famous François Vase, which was found in an Etruscan tomb near Chiusi and dates back to 570 BC. With many precious collections and testimonies of extinct cultures, the Archeological Museum in Florence is well worth a visit. Detailed information about the exhibits is available in all rooms.
Open hours: Monday to Saturday - 09:00 to 14:00, Sunday - 09:00 to 13:00
Closed: 1st, 3rd and 5th Sunday in month, 2nd and 4th Monday in month
Admission: charge, free to under 18s, seniors, teacher and students
Museo Richard Ginori della Manifattura di Doccia
Address: Via Pratese 31, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 420 7767
This Museo Richard Ginori della Manifattura di Doccia contains a large collection of famous Ginori porcelain, including pieces from the 18th to 20th century, which illustrate how the designs have evolved over the years.
Open hours: Monday to Saturday - 09:00 to 16:00
Museo di Antropologia
Address: Via Proconsolo 12, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 239 6449
Founded in 1593 by Buontalenti, the Museo di Antropologia is full of works from Asia, America, Africa, Oceania, and the Far East. It is situated inside the Palazzo Nonfinito.
Open hours: Thursday, Friday, Saturday and third Sunday in month - 09:00 to 13:00
Address: Piazza de' Mozzi 1, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 234 2427
Located in the Palazzo Mozzi, the Museo Bardini is home to a variety of different exhibits, including many paintings, ceramics, tapestries, pieces of furniture and arms which were donated by the antique collector Bardini to the Comune of Florence. This interesting museum contains some truly splendid works of art, such as the Allegory of Charity by Tino da Camaino, which was created over 700 years ago. Also on display is the well-known 'Saint Michael and the Dragon' by Antonio del Pollaiolo.
Open hours: Monday, Tuesday, Thursday to Saturday - 09:00 to 14:00, Sunday - 08:00 to 13:00
Address: Via de' Benci 6, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 244 661
With a large collection of paintings, antique objects and interesting artifacts, the Museo Horne includes many important pieces of art, such as signed works by Giotto and Filippino Lippi. Housed in a splendid example of a Renaissance town house, which was built in 1489, there are also many wonderful paintings by artists, including Pietro Lorenzetti, Luca Signorelli, Piero di Cosimo, Benozzo Gozzoli, Filippino Lippi, Giambologna, Sansovino, Beccafumi, Vecchietta, Bernardo Daddi and the Gaddi.
Open hours: Monday to Saturday - 09:00 to 13:00
Admission: charge, free to children under 6 years old
Address: Via del Proconsolo 4, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 238 8606
This vast building was constructed in 1255 and was originally headquarters for the police and also a prison. The Bargello is now home to the National Museum, which includes one of the most impressive collections of Renaissance sculpture in the world. Highlights include works of art such as Michelangelo's 'Drunken Bacchus', Donatello's 'David', Giambologna's 'Mercury' and also the designs submitted by Brunelleschi for the Baptistry Doors Competition.
Open hours: daily - 09:00 to 14:00
Closed: 2nd and 4th Monday of each month
Museo Salvatore Ferragamo (Ferragamo Museum)
Address: Palazzo Spini Ferroni - Piazza Santa Trinita 5r, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 336 0456
This museum is situated in a medieval palazzo that was constructed by Spini Ferroni in 1289. There are a number of interesting exhibits, including designs, sketches, photographs and an important collection of over 10,000 pairs of shoes designed by Salvatore Ferragamo. The Ferragamo Museum also has a display documenting the art of shoemaking and fashion from the 1920s. Guided tours are available for groups of 10 or more.
Open hours: Monday to Friday - 09:00 to 13:00, 14:00 to 18:00
Museo Stibbert (Stibbert Museum)
Address: Via Stibbert 26, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 475 520
With a range of different objects on display, including arms, artifacts, tapestries and paintings from the 16th to 19th century, the museum was created by Frederick Stibbert (1838 to 1906). He was a keen collector, traveller and artist and is responsible for many of the museum's exhibits.
Open hours: Monday to Wednesday - 10:00 to 13:00, Friday to Sunday - 10:00 to 17:00
Museo dell'Opera di Santa Croce (Museum of Santa Croce)
Address: Piazza Santa Croce 12, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 246 6105
Located in the convent, the Museum of Santa Croce in full of historic and artistic materials that originate from the church and convent before 1900. The museum is situated above the cloisters and the entrance is to the right of the church, in Piazza Santa Croce.
Open hours: daily - 09:30 to 17:00
Admission: charge, free to children under 11 years old, local residents and disabled people
Museo della Casa Fiorentina Antica
Address: Via Porta Rossa, 13, Florence, Italy
Tel: +39 (0) 55 238 8610
Located in the Palazzo Davanzati, this museum is home to a large number of paintings, other works of art, cloth, tapestry, furniture and many antiquities. Constructed almost 500 years ago, the Palazzo is a wonderful example of a 14th-century patrician house and the rooms are all decorated accordingly.
Open hours: daily - 08:15 to 13:45
Closed: 1st and 3rd Sunday, 2nd and 4th Monday each month