The 10 most unusual museums in Florence

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We are not talking about Uffizi or the Bargello, or about the works of the Accademia Gallery, Michelangelo's David and the masterpieces of the Palazzo Vecchio. This is a brief annotated guide to the most amazing museums in Florence, the most unknown to the general public. Take a weekend for yourself and enjoy the wonders of the Renaissance city.

Casa Buonarroti
Via Ghibellina, 70
Tel. 055 241752
Every day, 10 to 17, except Tuesdays, 1 January, Easter Sunday, August 15th, December 25th.
Full ticket € 6.50

Many believe it is the birthplace of Michelangelo. It isn’t: Buonarroti was born in Caprese, near Arezzo. This house was just one of the many where the artist has been living around the city. The museum houses a fine collection of artwork, sketches and drawings by Michelangelo, collected in past centuries by his descendants. His early works, such as the Madonna della Scala and the Centaurs - or the Battle of the Centaurs - carved just at 16 years old , and more creations of his elder age.

Davanzati Palace Museum or Museum of the Ancient Florentine House
Via Porta Rossa, 13
Tel. 055 2388610
Monday to Sunday, 8:15 to 13:50; closed on the second and fourth Sunday of the month and the first, third, fifth Monday of the month, New Year's Day, 1 May, Christmas.
Full ticket € 2.00

The Museum of the Ancient Florentine House stands you at 13 of Via Porta Rossa, less than two hundred meters from Santa Trinita. If you are curious about how the richest Florence families of the late medieval lived, you'll have to discover a lot. Cross the beautiful courtyard of the building and go up the maze of stairs. On the first floor you will find the main living room, the study, the Hall of parrots and the hall of Peacock. Upstairs, the master bedroom, a second living room, the dining room and another small study, furnished with precious works from the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries.

Brancacci Chapel
Church of Santa Maria del Carmine - Piazza del Carmine, 14
Tel. 055 2382195
Every weekday, except Tuesdays, 10-17. Sundays and religious holidays midweek, 13-17. Closed New Year's Day, January 7, Easter, May 1st, July 16th, August 15th, December 25th.
Full ticket € 6.00

It is the most admired series of renaissance’s frescoes in Florence. Painted between 1424 and 1428 by Masaccio and Masolino da Panicale, two of the most famous artists of the time, the chapel illustrates the Stories of St. Peter - the cycle was completed by Filippino Lippi in the second half of the fifteenth century. The chapel is located in the top of the transept of the Santa Maria del Carmine in Oltrarno church. An advice? Book (for free) your visit and rent the tablet videoguide (€ 3.99).

Medici Chapels
Piazza Madonna Aldobrandini, 6
Tel. 055 2388602
Monday to Sunday, 8:15 to 13:50. Closed: second and fourth Sunday of the month, the first, third, fifth Monday of the month, New Year's Day, 1 May, 25 December.
Full ticket € 6.00

The Medici Chapels are in the Basilica of San Lorenzo, once the parish of the Medici and the burial place of the family since the fifteenth century - the chapel is famous for Giuliano and Lorenzo de 'Medici tombs, made by Michelangelo. The museum includes the rooms of the crypt, built by Buontalenti, and the library.

Museum Frederick Stibbert
Via Stibbert, 26
Tel. 055 486049§
From Monday to Wednesday, 10-14. From Friday to Sunday, 10-18 (closed on Thursdays).
Full ticket € 8.00

Some say it's the most unusual museum in Florence. It’s on Montughi hill, just outside the city. What’s in there? All kind of weapons and armor from all countries, European, Islamic and Japanese. The museum is surrounded by a romantic park decorated with temples, caves and water games.

Carriage Museum - Palazzo Pitti
Pitti Palace - Piazza Pitti, 1
Tel. 055 2388611
Tours by appointment only (the museum is temporarily closed for renovation works)

The Carriage Museum is in Porta Romana, in the right wing of Palazzo Pitti. The exhibition includes carriages from the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries used by the courts of Lorraine and Savoy. Some the most amazing pieces are the gala coach of Ferdinand II, and a gilded carvings sicilian carriage. The most valuable carriage? The one of Ferdinand III of Lorraine, carved in 1816 by Paul Saints and painted from Antonio Marini with couples of kings and famous Florentines nobles.

Gucci Museum
Palace of Merchandise - Piazza della Signoria, 10
Tel. 055 75923302
Monday to Sunday, 10-20. Closed December 25, January 1 and August 15.
Ticket € 6.00 (50% is donated to the preservation and restoration of the artistic treasures of Florence)

The ninety years of history of the famous Florentine fashion label are all enclosed in this beautiful museum in Piazza della Signoria. On the ground floor, the great travel room, devoted to the most glamour leather goods and accessories. On the first floor, the World Flora and the Bags room, with excellent craftsmanship and historical models, The evening room, with evening chic dresses, and the Precious room, exhibition of unique luxury objects. In the top floor Logomania section, to celebrate the double G monogram, Lifestyle and Sports.
The museum also features a cafe, a bookstore and the Icon Store, the shop for your shopping.

Alinari National Museum of Photography
Piazza Santa Maria Novella, the 14th / r
Tel. 055 216310
Every day, 10-18.30, except Wednesdays.
Ticket € 9.00 (includes exhibit and Museum)

It was the first Italian museum entirely dedicated to the history of photography. Its collection contains over 900,000 original vintage prints, as well as albums and cameras from every age and model, objectives and laboratory instruments, frames and photos of the greatest photography masters in the nineteenth and twentieth century. In addition to the permanent exhibition, the museum organizes many temporary exhibitions.

Horne Museum
Via de 'Benci, 6
Tel. 055 244661
From Monday to Saturday, from 9 to 13 (closed Sundays and holidays).
Full ticket € 6.00

It’s maybe the finest and most sophisticated museum in Florence. Its collection, eclectic legacy of the English historian art Herbert Horne, has more than 6,000 works from the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. The masterpiece is the Santo Stefano di Giotto painted in tempera and gold on wood. In this treasure mine of masterpieces you will find paintings and sculptures by Giotto, Masaccio, Filippino Lippi and Giambologna. The Horne Museum is in the heart of Florence, the Renaissance residence of Palazzo Corsi.

Galileo Museum - Museum of the History of Science
Piazza dei Giudici, 1
Tel. 055 265311
Monday to Sunday, 9:30 to 18:00. Tuesday, 9:30 to 13:00. Closed on 1 January and 25 December.
Full ticket € 9.00

The museum is in Palazzo Castellani, just behind the square of the Uffizi, and houses one of the national and international most important scientific collections . Opened in 1930, it conserves precious scientific instruments from the ancient Medici collections, including the famous telescope of Galileo. Its rich library is available for all students.

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