On Monday we walked around the city and visited the Boboli Gardens behind the Pitti Palace. The gardens weren't so great - large areas of lawns and discrete areas bordered by hedges, with paths throughout. The city views at the highest point were partly obscured by trees.
Thanks Whitehouse's for the suggestion: in the evening we went to a performance of selected arias from Italian operas.
Tuesday was a soft day where we explored the below-ground walkways near the railway station. Then walked around the Duomo and took some pics.
Boboli GardensThese got a mention in Dan Brown's book "Inferno". They cover 110 acres, the size of the Anaheim Disneyland car park, I oddly recall.
Opera for Tiny TotsA soprano and a pianist performed a selection of pieces. The venue was an old church with seating for about 60. We had front row seats, less than 10m from the action. It was an interesting experience. We recognised a couple of arias, but I don't see us buying season tickets any time soon.
Il Duomo de Firenze The Cathedral of St Mary of the Flower complex comprises three buildings as shown here. The Baptistry in front, the Campanile (bell tower) and the Cathedral with its dome in between. The cathedral's construction took 140 years, starting in 1296. It replaced a 5th century church that was crumbling with age. The Baptistry is 200 years older. The Campanile was built in the mid-1300s: despite the 1348 Black Death catastrophe.
DuomoThe cathedral is the third largest in Italy and it is also remarkable for the size and construction of its dome. The dome starts 52m above the floor and spans 44m. It was built of brick, without scaffolding, and it is still the biggest masonry dome in the world. We had church fatigue and were unwilling to pay the entrance fee to take a two-minute spin around the interior.