The square Piazza della Signoria is
the most important square in the center of Florence. There
are many interesting things to see. In this article you
will learn which important sights you should visit in and
around Piazza della Signoria.
Location Piazza della
The Piazza della Signoria (very freely
translated city hall square of Florence) is considered the
center of the city, it is about 300 meters south of the
most famous building of Florence, the huge cathedral.
The most important building is the
Palazza Vecchio (Old
Palace). It was from here that the powerful Republic of
Florence was ruled. After the cathedral it is the most
important building of the city. Until today the building
has remained the town hall of the city. Palazzo Vecchio is
a huge building with a high tower. In the palace today are
some great sights like museums. We have created our own
article about the Old Palace, which you can find
on this link.
Long queues at Palazzo
The queues at the ticket counter in Palazzo Vecchio
are often very long. You often waits more than 2
you can buy tickets on the internet on this website.
These tickets without queuing are a bit more
expensive. For more and more big sights in Italy there
are such online tickets with preferential admission.
You save hours of queuing, but you pay a little more.
On the link above you can also buy tickets for the
two big art museums Uffizi Florence and
Florence, where the waiting times in the queue are
sometimes even longer.
Statue of David by
Probably the most photographed sight in
Piazza della Signoria Florence is the famous statue of
David by Michelangelo, one of the most famous works of art
in the world. It is directly in front of the entrance
of the Palazzo Vecchio. However, it is only a (very good)
copy. The original is a few hundred meters away in the
Museum dell Accademia for
"David" and "Hercules and Cacus" in Piazza della
Next to the Statua del David stands another famous
sculpture: "Judith and Holofernes" by Donatello. Much
bigger and no less interesting is the sculpture "Ercole e
Caco" (Hercules and Cacus) by Baccio Bandinelli. While
"Judith and Holofernes" is made of bronze, the David by
Michelangelo and "Hercules and Cacus" are made of the
beautiful light marble of Tuscany.
Loggia dei Lanzi
To the right of Piazza della Signoria
there is an open building that strongly reminds of the
Feldherrnhalle in Munich. The building, also called Loggia
della Signoria, with three round arches (arcades) also
houses large statues. Among others there are "The Robbery
of the Sabine Sisters" by Giambologna and "Perseus with
the Head of Medusa" by Benvenuto Cellini. In Piazza della
Signoria (built 1376 and 1382, Loggia dei Lanzi, Gothic
style) you can enter the loggia free of charge. Here
again, not everything is original. Many sculptures are
very good copies, the actual sculptures are in museums.
Many visitors are also attracted by the
beautiful fountain Fontana del Nettuno (Neptune Fountain)
in the 16th century Piazza della Signoria.
The architect of the Neptune Fountain in Florence was
Bartolomeo Ammannati (built in 1565). The occasion was the
wedding of Medici Francesco with Joan of Arc of Austria.
The large, very conspicuous equestrian statue in the
middle of the town hall square Florence represents the
Medici Cosimo I. This monument is by the artist
Giambologna (built in 1594).
Just a few meters from the square Piazza
della Signoria is one of the most famous museums of Italy,
the Uffizi. It is considered the most important art museum
in the world for the Renaissance period. Also for the
Uffizi Museum we have created an extra page in this
internet travel guide: Click here
Name of the square: The word "Signoria" in the name
of the square is the former name of the government in the
Republic of Florence. So you could translate "Piazza della
Signoria" with government square, a very free translation
would also be town hall square. Until today, the largest
building on the square is the Florence Town Hall.
Execution site: For many centuries
people were executed on Signoria Square in Florence. The
famous execution of Girolamo Savonarola (the de facto head
of the Republic of Florence) also took place in Piazza
della Signoria. A plate in front of the Neptune Fountain
commemorates the execution of the death sentence against
Savonarola in 1498.
Access: The area around Piazza
della Signoria is largely a pedestrian zone. Parking in
the center of Florence near the major sights is extremely
Close by: In addition to the
Uffizi Art Museum, the river Arno with perhaps the
famous bridge in the world (Ponte Vecchio) is barely more than 100 metres
away from Piazza della Signoria. Also to the cathedral of
Florence it is only about 300 metres, one can explore Florence on foot
without any problem. Behind the Uffizi at the Arno, one also finds the museum
Important: This article was translated by a
non-native English speaking person. We apologize for mistakes.