Rick Steves Florence | Italy Guidebooks

Rick Steves Florence

Rick Steve writes European travel guidebooks. I just scoured the introduction to his 2009 edition of Florence & Tuscany, passing time as I jet back to Duluth from the east coast for a two week pit stop with the familia before I fly out to live in Italia. I never would’ve thought a guidebook would be a good read but I’m actually learning a lot:

Some merchants will give you a $2 Lira coin back (not worth $0) trying to pass it for a $2 Euro coin as change? Those sneaky dogs.

Also, apparently you can reserve a pass, via internet, to the major museums in Florence to avoid 2-hour lines? Bingo, log on to the world wide web and we’re in business. Some museums are even booked up to a month in advance so I guess I better get on that.

According to Rick Steve, extroverts have more fun. Hallelujah. I knew my big mouth and complete fearlessness when it comes to meeting people would come in handy some day. I also had no idea that Florence has the most artistic masterpieces per square mile, most major buildings are closed on Mondays, the typical work day is from 8am to 2pm, Italians run off the siesta-schedule, and you don’t need a visa to go to Italy (I do for school but for typical travel you don’t). Also, there are two fashion weeks during the year where downtown Florence is crawling with models and designers. One of these weeks typically falls in June.

Anyways, needless to say I’m learning it’s a good idea to grab a guidebook before you head out on a trip–you never know what little tips you’ll pick up.

Italy Guidebooks

Here are a few other alternatives to Rick Steves to get you started:

Frommers Italy

Lonely Planet Italy

100 Places in Italy Every Woman Should Go

City Secrets: Florence, Venice and the Towns of Italy

Italy for Dummies

National Geographic Traveler: Piedmont and Northwest Italy

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