The Uffizi Museum is one of the oldest and most famous Florence museums. Designed by Vasari, it is home to the largest collection of Italian and Florentine Renaissance art in the world.
It has had such huge collections of masterpieces and sculptures, that some have been moved to other Florence museums, such as the Bargello. The Museum has more art per square inch than any other of the Florence museums. Statues of Florence's most acclaimed artists, sculptors, and philosophers of all time, surround the outside of the museum. They are a site to see, before you even reach the inside.
The gallery housed 200 works of art, when in 1993, a car bomb ripped into the west wing of the museum. Only three of the lesser Renaissance paintings were destroyed and the motive and perpetrators are still unknown to this day, but believed to be the Sicilian Mafia, who were engaged in terrorism around the time.
In 1998, Italy opened the New Uffizi, with a 15 million dollar renovation that repaired the damage and added more than 20,000 square feet of new space, where they displayed 100 works of art that had never been seen before. The classical sculptures and interior were restored, although the frescoes were damaged beyond repair in the blast. A new feature is the high windows on the upper floor that display the skyline of Florence and the Duomo.
The original museum site was a painting gallery that served as offices of the Medici in 1560. The painting gallery was started by Cosimo I, and is now housed in the second-floor rooms that are off a long, statue-lined hall. The gallery has some of the finest pieces of the Medici family art collection.
The Uffizi is one of the great Florence museums that boasts the works of Michelangelo, Rembrandt, Leonard da Vinci, Botticelli, Giotto, Filippo Lippi, Vasari, and Raphael, just to name a few. Each room is devoted to particular famous artists and periods. If you only see one museum in Florence, make sure it is the Uffizi.
The museum is in such high demand as a Florence tourist destination that it can have a wait time up to five hours in high season, especially July. If you reserve a ticket in advance, you will have a much shorter wait.
When you visit Florence, you have to see the masterpieces of the greatest artists that ever lived, and the Uffizi Museum is the easiest way to see them all in one place. It is truly an experience you will never forget, and one of the best Florence museums you will visit.
Address- Piazzale degli Uffizi 6
Visiting Hours- Tues-Sun 8:15am-7pm. Ticket window closes 45 min. before museum
Bus- A, B, 23, or 71
***Just a side note about attire for women in all Basilicas and Cathedrals. You will not be allowed to enter if you have bare shoulders or wearing shorts! Bring a shawl or long sleeve shirt with you.***
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