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Rare Access in Florence

By Linda Tancs

Florence, Italy is often referred to as the cradle of the Renaissance, a cultural jewel of 15th century art and architecture.  A mecca for museum lovers, that rich history is housed in over 70 museums across this city bisected by the Arno River.   You can beat the madding crowds by heading to a less-visited site like the Vasari Corridor.  Open only via special access through a tour or travel agency, this secret passageway through an unmarked door at the Uffizi Gallery connects the gallery to the Pitti Palace.  It was built in 1564 by Giorgio Vasari at the behest of Grand Duke Cosimo I de’ Medici, who desired a safe path between his home at the Pitti Palace and the Palazzo degli Uffizi where he worked.  The scenic covered walkway traces the Arno with panoramic views at Ponte Vecchio (Old Bridge), then dips into the interior of the church of Santa Felicita, ending at the famous Grotto of Buontalenti inside the Boboli Gardens.

 

 

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