Pitti Palace and Boboli Gardens Tour
Table of the Muses
Fountains of Boboli Gardnes
Duration of the tour: 6 hours
Suitable for children: yes
Accessibility for differently abled: yes, but some areas of the Boboli Garden
Difference in level: 30 metres in the Boboli Garden
Further information at the bottom (or click here)
Pitti Palace, the residence of the Grand Dukes of Tuscany
Pitti Palace and Boboli Gardens tour tour takes you to discover the unexpected wonders of the Florence Grand Dukes of Tuscany, those of the Medici and Lorraine families. This itinerary reveal the opulent image of a court that wanted to surround itself with artistic beauties well beyond the golden age of the Renaissance, decorating its residence with baroque and then neoclassical splendours.
We will begin our tour with a visit to the Palatine Gallery, one of the most admirable examples in Europe of picture gallery, that is, the arrangement of paintings by overlapping, as only a few survivors places can you now see.
Visiting the gallery you will admire the masterpieces of the greatest masters of Western art, from Botticelli to Rubens, passing through Caravaggio and Van Dyck. In addition, the Gallery houses the largest collection of paintings by the great Raphael Sanzio: thirteen, including the well-known Madonna della Seggiola and the Madonna delle Impannate.
The “White Room” of the Palatine Gallery
The Table of the Muses, a masterpiece of the Florentine “Commesso”
One of the first rooms we see in the Pitti Palace tour is the so called “Castagnoli Room” that preserves the “Table of the Muses“, a masterpiece of the marble “Commesso”, a Florentine artistic tradition that in the past was among the most popular in Europe.
Visiting the Duchess’s apartment, we see some of the rooms used in the past by the members of the court in daily life, when a part of the otium was dedicated to contemplation and discussion of works of art that were sometimes of burlesque subject, such as the paintings by Volterrano preserved in these spaces.
Among the rooms that have been preserved we even have a bathroom, still decorated with neoclassical style furniture and which, as we will discover, is linked to Napoleon for a particular reason…
The rooms of the Planets, a journey into the wonders of the Western art
Our Pitti Palace tour continues with a visit to the so-called Rooms of the Planets, a series of majestic rooms, frescoed by the well-known Baroque painter Pietro da Cortona, where you can not only take an iconographic and symbolic journey aimed at celebrating the life of the Grand Dukes, but also admire the works of the great artists in the history of art: in fact, the works by Perugino, Filippino Lippi, the great Raphael are here preserved, continuing then with Andrea del Sarto, Titian, Rubens and Salvator Rosa.
We will complete the Pitti Palace tour by visiting the rooms inhabited by members of the royal Savoy family during the period in which Florence was the capital of Italy.
The Boboli Gardens
The second part of the Pitti Palace tour, which will take place after the lunch break, will be a visit to the Boboli Gardens. This majestic park is the result of a series of interventions ranging from the mid-16th century, when the Duchess Eleonora of Toledo bought this space and the palace, up to the time of the Lorraine and Savoy families, when a part of the green space took on the typical features of an English garden, as it was fashionable at that time.
Our tour of the Boboli Gardens will start from the auditorium of the ‘theater’ which is located immediately behind the Pitti Palace.
The Madonna delle impannate, by Raphael
One of the rooms of the Palatine Gallery
The wonderful works in the Boboli Gardens
Here we have the opportunity to retrace the history of this structure built in the Baroque era but which has its precedents in a theatre built in the mid-1500s and which had important literary ties with the antiquarian culture characterizing the reign of Cosimo I’s era. Along the way, we will meet superb creations by the great masters of sculpture, such as the Neptune group made by Stoldo Lorenzi, the “Artichoke fountain“, or the extraordinary island that has at its centre the fountain called the “Ocean”, one of the greatest creations by Giambologna.
Visiting the Giardino del Cavaliere”, we will analyze the meaning of this apparently simple name and, above all, admire the beautiful panorama of the south-east area of Florence.
The refined Kaffeehaus and the mysterious Buontalenti’s Grotto
As this space is one of the highest points of the city, here you will be able to see important buildings of the city, such as the Basilica of San Miniato al Monte, the ‘Arnolfian’ walls and the Galli Castle, a building that is linked to important episodes of Florence history … We will continue with the Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens tour seeing the Kaffeehaus, an elegant Rococo style building that is an interesting testimony of a custom introduced in Florence in the 18th century by the members of the Lorraine family: taking the outdoor cafe.
The last stop on our route is the mysterious “Grotta grande” or “Grotto”, known as the “Grotta del Buontalenti“; this is a symbolic creation of the alchemical culture that characterized the reign of Francis I, in the second half of the 16th-century, and preserves refined works that conceal a symbolism of great charm.
Through the Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens tour you will be able to discover a little known side of the history of Florence where court glories, family intrigues and superb artistic creations intertwine in what was one of the first examples of royal residence in Europe.
The Venus by Giambologna in the Buontalenti’s cave
Fountain of the Boboli Gardens
important Information about the tour (click here)
A convenient way to access all the museums or to use the Florentine public transport service is by the Firenze Card (temporarily not active).
The activity proposed here is not a joinable tour but a private tour that is carried out on request of individuals or groups organised with a tourist agency and can be customised for starting time, meeting place and duration. depending on the customer’s needs.
Duration of the Pitti Palace tour
The guided tour can last 2 or 4 hours. With the 2-hour tour, we can visit the Galleria Palatgina, where the masterpieces by Raphael, Caravaggio, Rubens Rosso Fiorentino are kept. With the 4-hour, we can also visit the beauties of the Boboli Gardens.
Radio rental compulsory from 6 people onwards
From 6 people onwards, to facilitate listening to the guide explanations and ensuring social distancing outdoors and indoors, it is strictly recommended to rent radio devices with transmitters that ensure perfect listening to the explanations of the guide even from a distance; as we visit the inside of the Pitti Palace, the rental of radios is compulsory for 4 or more people. The service is booked by the guide when the guided tour is requested, but the rental cost, which is € 1.00 per person for 2 hours, 1,50 € for 4 hours, is charged to the customer and can be paid directly to the guide who will then take care to pay the supplier.
Carers or teachers of school groups do not pay for the rental of the radio.
Pitti Palace opening hours:
Boboli Gardens opening hours:
Ticket Prices Pitti Palace
Ticket Prices Boboli Garden
The ticket price to the Pitti Palace and the Boboli Gardens is not included in the tour rate
The tickets for Pitti Palace and Boboli Gardens can be purchased on the official online store (if the link doesn’t work, recharge the page)
limit of people per group
Under the current provisions, the group cannot exceed the maximum limit of 16 people for the Pitti Palace and 28 people for the Boboli Gardens, guide included.
Free admission to the state museums on the first Sundays of the month
Since the Italian Ministry of Culture has decided to reintroduce free admission to state museums on the first Sundays of the month starting from 3 April 2022, it is not recommended to book this tour every first Sunday of the month due to the huge turnout of people and the impossibility for that day to book entry at a determinate time.
The guide does not provide private transport service, which entails the client needs to reach the meeting point established in the route on his own.
To get the contact of a licensed driver who provides private transfer service, as well as getting further information about the tour, please write to:
Cost and reservation of the tour (click here)
Cost of the Pitti Palace private guided tour
The rate for a 2-hours private guided tour is 120.00 € (price in total and not per person), for 4 hours 210.00 € (always price in total and not per person).
For further information about the rates, also to check the deals available, please visit the dedicated section by clicking here.
How to book the tour?
Once the day and time of the tour have been agreed with the guide, to book it is necessary to advance 50% of the tour value with a deposit to be paid by credit card.
Attention: pay the deposit only after agreed the date and the details of the tour with the guide. The remaining payment of the guided tour takes place after the tour by card, in cash or by bank transfer.
It is the responsibility of the guide to guarantee the guide service in any case. If, even for personal reasons, the guide is unable to perform the service in the date set with the client, it will be his concern to contact a trusted colleague who can replace him and therefore guarantee the customer service.
The cancellation of the tour from the client can be done free of charge by giving timely notice to the guide before 48 hours from the date and time agreed for the service. In this case the deposit paid in advance by the customer will be returned by the guide. If instead cancellation is made by the customer when there are less than 48 hours before the date agreed for the service, the customer will lose the deposit paid.
How to reach Florence Historic centre (click here)
Reachable via the A1 motorway (Firenze Scandicci exit and from there continue towards the center, reaching the area of the Santa Maria Novella station, where there is a multi-storey underground car park (reachable only for vehicles with engines from EURO 6 onwards). From the station underpass, Piazza di Santa Maria Novella can be reached in a few minutes.
As a cheaper alternative to the underground car park, there is the Piazzale Montelungo car park (always subject to charges). An excellent alternative to car parking near the center historic is to leave the vehicle at the Villa Costanza car park and from there take the T1 tram line which takes about 22 minutes to reach the Santa Maria Novella station. The T1 line has stops both before and after the Santa Maria station Novella that can be convenient to reach any accommodation For more information on the Tramvia timetables and stops click here.
By private bus lines
|There are connections of private lines to reach Florence, such as Italbus and Flixbus which reach the Villa Costanza tramway station; from the latter the tram line takes about 22 minutes to reach Santa Maria Novella station. For more info on the Tramvia timetables click here.|
Florence can be reached by plane via the Amerigo Vespucci Airport. From here the historic center is connected:
With the Tram
With Taxi service
Contatctable to the numbers +390554643159 al +390554242 or on the web site clicking here.
Florence can be reached by train with the Trenitalia service. Depending on your accommodation needs, you can arrive in Firenze Santa Maria Novella, Firenze Rifredi or Firenze Campo di Marte. With the regional lines then Florence can also be reached from other cities of Tuscany.
Organised Groups with tourist coach
For organised groups by touristic bus, there are drop-off/drop-on points for passengers in the urban centre of Florence (click here to view the points).
Tourist coaches are subject to the payment of a checkpoint (more information here).
|Camper owners find car parks for campers (only some of these are equipped) in Via delle Porte Sante,, in Via delle Porte Sante, in Viale Abramo Lincoln, in Via Luigi Castaldi, in Largo Alcide De Gasperi, at the Largo Alcide De Gasperi (the latter connected to the center with the Nelli-Torregalli tram stop). For more info on the equipped Campervan areas around Florence click here.|