Porta San Frediano (San Frediano Gate), Florence

Porta San Frediano (San Frediano Gate), Florence

Porta San Frediano is a well-preserved gateway located at the western end of Borgo, the main street of the San Frediano district in Florence. Finished in 1332, it stands as a testament to the city's medieval past, representing one of the finest examples of the 14th-century city walls that once encircled Florence.

Originally constructed in the 12th century, Porta San Frediano served as an important entry point for travelers and goods coming from Pisa and the western regions of Tuscany. Its name is derived from the nearby San Frediano church, while its architecture reflects the military fortifications of the medieval era, featuring a central arch flanked by two smaller arches for pedestrian traffic. Above the arches, a defensive structure called a machicolation provided openings for dropping projectiles on attackers.

Throughout its history, Porta San Frediano witnessed significant events. During the Middle Ages, the gate played a crucial role in defending the city, enduring sieges and attacks. It also served as a symbol of Florence's power and control over its surrounding territories. A depiction of the gate in 1494 can be seen in a painting by Filippino Lippi, namely the "Madonna and Child with Saint John among Saints Martin of Tours and Catherine of Alexandria" found in the Nerli Chapel of Florence's Santo Spirito church.

With the expansion of Florence beyond its medieval boundaries, Porta San Frediano gradually lost its strategic military importance. Unlike numerous gateways that were destroyed during the demolition of Florence's city walls in the 19th century, the San Frediano Gate was fortunate to be spared from such fate. It proudly retains its original large wooden and metal doors, which add to its historical and architectural value.

Tip:
Make sure not to overlook Trattoria Sabatino (Mon-Fri: 12–2:30pm, 7:15–10pm), a roomy and well-lit dining hall that has retained its original charm since its establishment in 1956. Charging astonishingly affordable prices, this family-owned eatery offers a genuine experience with a straightforward menu. An excellent spot to observe locals relishing their meals, it is conveniently located just outside the San Frediano Gate, a 15-minute walk from the Old Bridge ("Ponte Vecchio"), at Via Pisana 2/R, and will be a delightful reward for those who have embarked on this Arno South Bank Walking Tour.

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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Porta San Frediano (San Frediano Gate) on Map

Sight Name: Porta San Frediano (San Frediano Gate)
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.
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.

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Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.7 Km or 1.7 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
Michelangelo's Masterpieces Walking Tour

Michelangelo's Masterpieces Walking Tour

Michelangelo spent over 20 years of his life in Florence – the birthplace of the Renaissance – during which time he created some of the most beautiful masterpieces the city had ever seen. The most famous of them – the David – was larger than life, and brought a larger-than-life image to the artist. No amount of photos or copies of the statue will do it justice, so to see it with your own...  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.0 Km or 2.5 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
Florence Introduction Walking Tour

Florence Introduction Walking Tour

The city of Florence was founded by Julius Caesar in 59 BC as a settlement for veteran soldiers. It was built initially in the style of an army garrison – with main streets intersecting at today's Piazza della Repubblica. The original name, Fluentia, stems from its location between the two rivers; later, it was renamed Florentia, which means “flowering” or “flourishing”.

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Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.1 Km or 2.5 Miles
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

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