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For the past thousand years, Florentines have excelled in couture, stationery production, goldsmithing, and leatherwork. In fact, the shoesmiths here are so renowned that when actor Daniel Day Lewis decided to take time away from film-making to learn the cobbling trade, he headed straight to Florence.

Shopping in Florence

Libreria La Citè

This attractive café and bookshop specializes in art, photography, comics, and books by small publishers and independent authors. You can order cake and coffee or a platter of cheese and salami while you browse. It's open from 10:30am to 1am and evenings feature free music and cultural events.

Borgo San Frediano 20r, Tuscany, 011-39-055-210-387, www.lacitelibreria.info
Tags: shopping | editor pick | trendy | cafe | books

Mercato Centrale

This is the place to go for fresh local produce. From the market’s dozen stalls, put together a lunch of fruit, cheese, and bread and head to the Piazza della Signoria for a picnic.

Piazza di Marceto Centrale, Tuscany,
Tags: shopping | moderate | things to do | culinary

Mercato di San Lorenzo

Elbow your way through tourists and locals alike to shop hundreds of kiosks selling leather goods, cheap and designer fashions, and souvenirs. The 1874 indoor Mercato Centrale is the place to go for fresh local produce. From the market’s dozens of stalls, put together a lunch of fruit, cheese, and bread and head to a sunny piazza for a picnic.

Piazza San Lorenzo, Tuscany,
Tags: shopping | moderate | things to do | culinary | eclectic

Officina Profumo Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella

The present business dates from 1612, but the friars of nearby Santa Maria Novella had been running an apothecary shop since 1221. Most of the perfumes and body care products still produced and sold here were developed in the 1500s for Caterina de' Medici.

Via della Scala 16, Tuscany, 011-39-055-216-276, www.smnovella.it
Tags: shopping | expensive | things to do | perfume


The Oltrarno is a maze of narrow streets and alleys that you should explore for the myriad craft shops where expert artisans are still keeping alive age-old working methods. From traditional silk weaving, wood carving, and paper marbling to the quaint workshops of young goldsmiths and tiny vintage fashion stores, there's enough here for every taste and for most pockets.

Tuscany, www.diladdarno.it
Tags: shopping | trendy | things to do | crafts | eclectic | vintage


Francesco Pineider opened his first shop in Florence in 1774, and for more than two centuries the brand has been synonymous with hand-made paper, custom printing, engraved stationery, fine desk accessories, and luxury leather briefcases – a mix of style and quality that outlasts fleeting fashion trends.

Piazza della Signoria 13, Tuscany, 011-39-055-281-747, www.pineider.com
Tags: shopping | expensive | smart splurge | things to do

Ponte Vecchio

Florence's oldest, most iconic bridge vies with the Duomo for favorite city landmark. The tiny shops lining the Ponte Vecchio were once home to the city butchers and fishmongers, who use to dump the rotting leftovers into the river. Because of the smell, in 1593 Ferdinando I de' Medici decreed that they should be replaced with goldsmiths, which remain to this day.

Between Via Por Santa Maria and Via Guicciardini, Tuscany,
Tags: family | shopping | expensive | things to do | culture | history

Via Tornabuoni / Via della Vigna Nuova / Via Strozzi

Along via Tornabuoni and the neighboring Via della Vigna Nuova and Via Strozzi you’ll find the high-end boutiques of Italian designers like Fendi, Versace, Giorgio Armani, Dolce & Gabbana, and Prada. But don't forget to check the local wares of international-caliber designers like Salvatore Ferragamo, Emilio Pucci, and Roberto Cavalli.

Via Tornabuoni and neighboring streets, Tuscany, www.vignanuovafirenze.it
Tags: shopping | expensive | things to do | eclectic | menswear

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