Almost 2,000,000 tourists a year visit the Uffizi Gallery in Florence: it’s an impressive and constantly growing number that you have to take into account when planning to visit the gallery. Read on for more information on how to plan a smart trip to the Uffizi Gallery, avoid long lines and make the most out of your time!
If Florence is going to be one of your summer destinations, and the Uffizi Gallery is an absolute must-see on your list of things to do, you are absolutely on the right path. Established in 1581 by Grand Duke Francesco de’ Medici, the Uffizi Gallery is one of the world’s most impressive ensembles of Italian Renaissance and Baroque masterpieces. Its collections cover a time span of many centuries, from ancient Greek statutes to self portraits by living artists.
The Smart Way To Visit the Uffizi Gallery:
1) Avoid queueing
You may have been told that there is a long line of people to get into the Uffizi, but you may have not fully understood the importance of this detail. If you have not booked your visit in advance, in high season you can expect to be in line for 3 or 4 hours. This is mainly due to security reasons: regardless of the size of the Uffizi, no more than 900 people can be admitted into the gallery at the same time. So why waste your time in line, if you can book in advance? By booking your ticket ahead, you can skip the line at the entrance and save precious time to do more interesting things in Florence!
2) Get a guide
With hundreds of art works, the Uffizi Gallery can be overwhelming: you will probably have to spend a little time before your visit, deciding what you want to see once inside the museum. It may sound a bit odd to undertake this amount of planning since you are on vacation, but the more you find out about the Uffizi Gallery before you go, the easier and more pleasant your visit is going to be! The Uffizi website suggests three different itineraries for visitors, and renting an audio guide can also be a very enjoyable way to tour the Uffizi.
However, if you’re looking for a deeper experience that will lead you through the marvelous art universe that is the Uffizi Gallery, why not book a guided tour? Whether you have little time to dedicate to the gallery and want to focus on its masterpieces, or would like to spend more time during your holiday discovering Florence’s museums with a privately guided tour, we have something for you.
If you are, instead, the independent kind visitor, we recommend stopping in one of the many bookshops along the way to the museum and buying a paperback guide to the Uffizi. There are several bookshops inside the gallery itself, selling beautiful art books and guides to the Uffizi, which you will be able to read once the visit is finished, to avoid the feeling of having seen too many things and not remembering any of them clearly.
3) Don’t miss the Vasari Corridor
The Vasari Corridor is a hidden passage that allows visitors to take a magical, undisturbed walk from the Uffizi Gallery to the Palazzo Pizzi on the other side of the river, just like the Medici Grandukes used to do. It is definitely an experience worth trying, but again, the same rule of thumb applies here: book your walk in advance!
4) Stay hydrated!
Beverages are not allowed inside the Uffizi Gallery, but you’ll hardly be able to make a long visit without water. The Uffizi cafeteria offers a breathtaking view of Palazzo Vecchio with a panoramic terrace overlooking Piazza della Signoria , and we absolutely recommend spending some time here to rest your feet before continuing your visit!
5) Do not take pictures, but…
Photographing with flash inside the Uffizi Gallery is forbidden. You may, however, notice other visitors taking pictures even though it is prohibited, regardless of the damage they could cause to the artworks. If you see someone doing so, you have the right to report them to the nearest museum guard. Everyone likes taking photos and having nice memories of their trips, but preserving the integrity of the Uffizi Gallery is essential: as a visitor, you have the right to insure that what you are experiencing will be available to future generations.
Do you have any other tips that make visiting the Uffizi easier?