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View of Florence skyline from the Rose Garden above Florence, Italy.

Florence with Teens – Tips from a Local Mom

Although my kids aren’t even close to their teenage years yet, I’ve helped plenty of families with teens visit Florence.  Time in Florence is a hit for most teens, as there’s something in Firenze to satisfy almost everyone’s interests. 

Is Florence a Good Place to Visit with Teens?

Yes!  Time in Florence gives your teen a chance to soak up the Italian culture, see how Italians live their daily lives, feast on incredible art, and spend time in a beautiful historic center – the birthplace of the Renaissance!

The center is small, so you can (choose to) give your teen some independent time while you’re visiting – hanging out in a piazza in the evening, going shopping in the center solo, or grabbing breakfast for the family in the morning.

The only time I see teens disappointed in Florence is if they’re really into outdoor activities and don’t want to spend time in a city.  Florence does have some green spaces, but there isn’t an abundance of ‘wild’ outdoor activities like you’ll find in the countryside, mountains, or at the seaside.  However, you can find rock climbing, cycling, hiking, and water sports activities close to Florence – easy enough to do on a day trip.

You may also want to read our post on Italy with Teens

The Best Things to Do With Teens in Florence (by Interest)

Art for Teens in Florence

David statue in the Accademia Gallery in Florence, Italy.
Accademia Gallery
  • Uffizi Gallery – visit alone or on a guided tour
  • Accademia Gallery – see Michelangelo’s David
  • Look for street art (Clet, Blub) and visit Clet’s Gallery
  • Take a paper marbling class at Il Papiro or Giulio Giannini
  • Sketch in a museum, in a piazza, or in a garden

Food for Teens in Florence

Fresh produce at the Sant'Ambrogio market in Florence, Italy.
The Sant’Ambrogio Market
  • Visit Sant’Ambrogio market
  • Eat at a Michelin-star restaurant (Gucci Osteria is a nice intro because you can have lunch there, it’s centrally located, and you can combine it with a visit to the Gucci Museum)
  • Stop by Venchi (on Via dei Calzaiuoli) to see and smell the chocolate wall (and buy some chocolate candy or gelato)
  • Eat a Tuscan farm-to-table meal at Il Borro
  • Go on a food tour

Fashion for Teens in Florence

People walking on the pedestrian street Via Tornabuoni in Florence, Italy.  It's the street with most of the cities luxury brand shops.
Via Tornabuoni
  • Ferragamo Shoe Museum
  • Gucci Museum
  • Visit artisan shops on the other side of the river (Oltrarno)
  • Pitti Palace Museum of Costume and Fashion
  • Window shop for luxury brands on Via Tornabuoni
  • Visit shops of local artisans in the Oltrarno district
  • Browse for unique jewelry in the small flea market in Sant’Ambrogio

Architecture for Teens in Florence

Nighttime in Florence, Italy. The Ponte Vecchio bridge is lit up and reflects on the Arno River. Lit up buildings line both sides of the river.
Ponte Vecchio at night
  • Walk across the Ponte Vecchio
  • Learn about Leonardo da Vinci’s ideas (and try out some of his machines) at the Leonardo da Vinci Interactive Museum
  • Take a Florence architecture walking tour
  • Explore Palazzo Vecchio (with or without a guide); don’t forget to visit the map room (confirm it’s open)

Active Pursuits for Teens in Florence

Many cycling downhill past a vineyard in Tuscany, Italy.
Cycling in the countryside outside Florence
  • Go for a jog or walk along the Arno River
  • Join a pickup soccer game at the Parco delle Cascine
  • Time your trip so you can participate in the Firenze Marathon (running) or Granfondo di Firenze (cycling)
  • Go on a bike trip in the countryside (depart from Florence in a van)

Photography for Teens in Florence

View of Florence, Italy on a sunny day from San Miniato al Monte.
Florence from San Miniato al Monte
  • Head up to Piazzale Michelangelo for gorgeous views of Florence at sunset or early in the morning.  Other nice spots to see Florence from above:  Boboli Gardens, San Miniato al Monte, Bardini Gardens, Giardino delle Rose (Rose Garden).
  • Capture the statues in the Loggia dei Lanzi outside the Uffizi Gallery (on Piazza della Signoria)

More Things to Do in Florence with Teens

Colorful dried flowers hang above the entrance of the historic Santa Maria Novella Pharmacy in Florence, Italy.
Checking out the Santa Maria Novella Pharmacy
  • Spend time in bookstores.  Some of our favorites for teens are RED Feltrinelli, Libreria La Cité, Paperback Exchange, Todo Modo, and the Uffizi Gallery bookshop (you can enter without a ticket – just ask an employee).  You can also visit the British Institute’s library.
  • Take a language course or study on your own and practice at markets, cafes, and in grocery stores and shops.
  • Hang out at ‘the beach.’  In the summer months, parts of the Arno River ‘shore’ become mini beaches and you can relax in the sun, have a cold drink, and mingle with the locals.
  • Visit the historic Santa Maria Novella Pharmacy.
  • Rest tired legs and enjoy the views from the red Hop On Hop Off bus.
  • Explore the Galileo Museum.
  • When I lived in Florence as a ‘youngster,’ I always enjoyed trying to spot a nutria in the river in the evening.
  • Visit a toy store.  Yes, even teenagers like toys, and it’s fun to see what’s popular in another country.  The LEGO store in Florence is popular with all ages for it’s Italy-themed models in the store and some special sets for sale. 
  • Create a scavenger hunt for your teen.  Along with basics like monuments, add quirky items like buchette di vino (wine holes), November 1966 flood markers on buildings, and Michelangelo’s graffiti on the side of Palazzo Vecchio.
  • See an incredible collection of armor and weapons at the oft-overlooked Stibbert Museum.
  • Visit the renovated La Specola Museum and its collections of butterflies and insects, taxidermied animals, and anatomical wax models.

Tips for Visiting Florence with Teens

  • Stay in the historic center.  If you can, book accommodation near the Duomo.  It’s louder and more crowded (during high season), but you can give your teen freedom to explore.  Read more about Where to Stay in Florence!
  • Let your teenager visit a piazza alone (or with you nearby) – good options are Piazza Santo Spirito for dinner or aperitivo or Piazza Santa Croce area for aperitivo
  • If you have a teen that’s interested in journaling, check out the beautiful Florentine marbled paper journals at shops like Il Papiro.  There are plenty of beautiful parks to journal in – like Boboli Gardens, the Rose Garden, and Parco delle Cascine.
  • If you’ll be in town for a week or longer, let your teen join an Italian language course.  The Florentine Italian is said to be the ‘true Italian.’
  • Florence often has live music – you could go see a concert with your teen.  Look at TicketOne.it or ask your accommodation about local classical music concerts.
  • Have your teen ‘prep’ for the visit by reading or watching films (or YouTube videos) about things he or she is interested in.  For example, teens will enjoy a visit to see David at the Accademia even more if they’ve read a book about Michelangelo.

You may also be interested in
Florence with Kids
Things to Do in Florence at Night
Renting a Car in Florence

Enjoy your visit to Florence at this special moment in your teen’s life!  I hope this post has given you some ideas of how to make the trip special.  Divertitevi – have fun!

Candice Criscione Avatar