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Shopping in Florence


Florence proposes such an endless amount of choice when it comes to shopping that even the most demanding shopper is sure to find great purchases or a one-of-a-kind find in one of its many stores, shops, boutiques or markets.
All the major fashion designers, from both Italian and international labels, as well as the most select jewelers, have a store on Via Tornabuoni. Very chic purchases can also be found nearby on Via della Vigna Nuova.


In the very old Via Calzaiuoli, at one time famous for its shops offering handmade footwear, you'll now find all sorts of clothing and shoe stores. There are also many restaurants and gelaterias if you decide to take a shopping break. Or you can even just check out the latest fashions by people watching as this is one of the busiest shopping streets in Florence.

If you're interested in antiques, the best dealers can be found on Via dei Fossi and on Via di Maggio. If you prefer however to admire or treat yourself to some stunning jewelry, you should head towards the Ponte Vecchio.

For a different type of souvenir, you can check out the beautiful craftsmanship on display in the artisan workshops in the Santo Spirito quarter of the Oltrarno neighborhood, located right after the Ponte Vecchio. Here you'll be able to buy original wood carvings and handcrafted jewelry, light fixtures, metal vases, typical Florentine straw hats and many other special creations. Nearby on the Piazza di Santo Spirito, under the shade of the church from which the square got its name, an artisans' market, which sells traditional handicrafts made in Italy and around the world, is held every second Sunday.


In the neighboring area of San Frediano, also located in the Oltrarno district, there are quite a few specialty shops where you can purchase textiles for furnishings, hand-decorated objects in silver, custom-made shoes and glassworks. For those interested in leather goods, a visit to the Santa Croce area is called for where there are plenty of stores and workshops full of beautiful bags, shoes and clothing. There are also lots of leather items available at San Lorenzo, the city's main market. All sorts of souvenirs and items of clothing are sold here as well.

The Loggia del Porcellino is a building housing the Mercato Nuovo, so-called to distinguish it from the Mercato Vecchio (Old Market) located in the Piazza della Repubblica. The impressive Loggia was constructed between 1547 and 1551 and was originally intended as a place to sell silk and other precious items as well as the popular local straw hats, but mainly leather goods and souvenirs are sold there today. On the southern side of the Loggia, you can see the Fontana del Porcellino (Fountain of the Piglet), which was intended primarily as a means for quenching the merchants' thirst. Despite its name, the bronze sculpture represents in fact a wild boar on the alert as if it were surprised by a hunter. Local tradition has it that rubbing the boar's snout will bring good luck and so many people have done so that its snout is now shiny from the many hands polishing it all day long. To ensure that prospective fortune will come, a coin must be placed in its mouth once its snout has been rubbed. If it falls into the grate afterwards your good fortune is on the way.

If you would like to see a selection of the different fruits and vegetables available in the region, the best food market is the Mercato Centrale, which is open everyday except Sunday, from 7am to 2pm.
For antiques and bric-a-brac, the city most well-known flea market can be found in the Piazza dei Ciompi. It is a traditional Florentine market and all types of objects can be discovered here, from the unusual to the unique: tea services, flatware, furniture, etc. It is open daily from 9am to 7pm.

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