Piazza della Signoria (Signoria Square), Florence

Piazza della Signoria (Signoria Square), Florence (must see)

Alongside the Cathedral Square ("Piazza del Duomo"), the religious heart of Florence, Signoria Square is another key center of attraction in the city: its civil center, dominated by the formidable Palazzo Vecchio, a fortified palace. Boasting the finest assemblage of outdoor statues, this square holds significant historical importance as the birthplace of the Florentine Republic. As such, it holds a special place in the hearts of the locals as a hub of social life. The atmosphere in this area seems to transcend time, evoking images of Michelangelo's "David" standing here in its original location, now replaced by a replica.

The square has enjoyed central location in the city since the Roman times when it was just a small town called Florentia. Back then, it was surrounded by a theater, a complex of baths, and a textile workshop. Over time, a church, a loggia, and an enormous 5th-century basilica were added, as revealed by excavations carried out in the 1980s during the square's repaving.

The square's captivating appeal lies not only in its asymmetrical shape but also in the multitude of artworks it houses, both large and small. This makes it a favorite spot for photographers, who eagerly snap away from every conceivable angle. Even without a camera, standing in the middle of the square and taking in the 360-degree view is a mesmerizing experience in itself.

Dominating the city skyline, the imposing Old Palace ("Palazzo Vecchio") serves as the seat of municipal government. Adjacent to it, just a short distance away, stands the equally impressive "Lanterns' Lodge ("Loggia dei Lanzi"). Functioning as an open-air museum, this lodge is almost always accessible to the public free of charge and displays yet another impressive collection of statues, including the renowned "Rape of the Sabine Women", "Hercules and the Centaur", and a bronze "Perseus" cleverly positioned as if engaged in a gaze with the statue of David.

You'll find a few places to sit here, some out of the sun, but be sure to pace yourself and stay hydrated, especially during the hot summer months. Navigating through the crowd can be a challenge, but it's best to adopt a slight diagonal approach rather than attempting a direct path towards your destination, as you'll often encounter people walking in the opposite direction. By maneuvering like a yacht tacking against the wind – moving slightly to the right, then to the left, and so on – you can easily slide into the gaps as they appear. Easy-peasy!

Why You Should Visit:
One of the two most significant attractions in Florence, alongside the Cathedral Square ("Piazza del Duomo"), home to what could be considered the finest collection of outdoor statues in the world, surrounded by beautifully adorned buildings and numerous "very good" to "world-class" museums.

Want to visit this sight? Check out these Self-Guided Walking Tours in Florence. Alternatively, you can download the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from Apple App Store or Google Play Store. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Piazza della Signoria (Signoria Square) on Map

Sight Name: Piazza della Signoria (Signoria Square)
Sight Location: Florence, Italy (See walking tours in Florence)
Sight Type: Attraction/Landmark
Guide(s) Containing This Sight:

Walking Tours in Florence, Italy

Create Your Own Walk in Florence

Create Your Own Walk in Florence

Creating your own self-guided walk in Florence is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Dante's Florence Walking Tour

Dante's Florence Walking Tour

Dante Alighieri was arguably the greatest – albeit also most controversial – of Italy's poets. After having served as one of the six priors governing Florence, his political activities – including the banishing of several rivals – led to his own banishment, upon which he wrote his masterpiece, “The Divine Comedy”, as a wanderer, seeking protection for his family in one town after...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.1 Km or 1.3 Miles
Arno South Bank Walking Tour

Arno South Bank Walking Tour

The area south of Arno river, also called Oltrarno ("Beyond the Arno"), is a quieter place but not less interesting. Here you can find the Pitti Palace whose collection of paintings is second only to the Uffizi, and the vast Boboli Gardens once enjoyed by the Medici and the royal family. One of the first and most important examples of "Italian Gardens", they later served as...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.4 Km or 1.5 Miles
Florence Food Tour

Florence Food Tour

Food is one of the great Florentine passions, and the great thing about having a delicious authentic Tuscan meal, a snack, delicatessen, or a quality gelato here – besides the abundant variety – is not having to spend a lot of money for it.

In general, the “osterias” and the eateries nestled in Sant’Ambrogio Market will offer cheaper and more casual food with an emphasis on home...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.6 Km or 1.6 Miles
Florence's Hidden Art Treasures

Florence's Hidden Art Treasures

The “Cradle of the Renaissance,” Florence is one of Europe’s most beautiful and busiest destinations, home to some of the world's greatest pieces of art and architecture. The iconic masters like Giotto, Botticelli, Raphael and Michelangelo, as well as their somewhat less-known but equally talented counterparts, such as Ghirlandaio, Sangallo and Castagno, have blessed this city with...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.2 Km or 2 Miles
Medici Landmarks Walking Tour

Medici Landmarks Walking Tour

The Medici family helped to establish Florence as the single most important art capital of Renaissance Europe. In order to prove wealth and power, they built numerous palaces, libraries, churches, chapels and personal residences. The Medicis were big lovers of art and they acquired huge, expensive collections, as well as supporting many sculptors and painters of the time.

Designed by...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.7 Km or 1.7 Miles
Duomo Walking Tour

Duomo Walking Tour

Located in the very heart of historic Florence, the Duomo area is deservedly considered the city’s religious and civic center, replete with numerous landmarks. Piazza del Duomo and Piazza della Signoria, the two most important squares in the city, are steeped in history and the sights and activities found here are truly endless.

The most prominent of these, undoubtedly, is the breathtaking...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.8 Km or 1.7 Miles

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