- Target: families, children over 8 years old
- Available in Italian and English
- Lenght: 45 minutes
- Maximum number of participants: 25 people
PLEASE NOTICE: Confirmed time is not always the same time you requested; museum automatically confirms the closest available time on the same date if requested time is sold out.When:
Daily at 11:30, 12:15, 15:00 and 15:45, except on Thursday afternoon
For cancellations once a confirmation code has been assigned to the reservation, and for no shows, we can refund cost of unused tickets minus service fee (reservation fee and online booking fee).
The Medieval Palace Revealed
The Palazzo Vecchio’s present appearance is the result of a long series of alterations, enlargements and reconstructions during more than three centuries. The original nucleus – attributed to Arnolfo di Cambio – consists of the stone cube overlooking the piazza. Intended to house the Priors of the Guilds and the Gonfalonier of Justice, that is to say the supreme governing body of the city, the dour building, massively rusticated, crowned with battlements and surmounted by an imposing tower ninety-five meters high, was begun in the late 13th century and finished in 1313.
The first enlargement of the Palazzo took place in 1342, when Gualtieri di Brienne, Duke of Athens, Lord of the city, wanted to enlarge the fortified wall and to construct a secret staircase, hollowed out of the thickness of the wall, by which one could go up and down unobserved.
The first extensive expansion of the Palazzo took place only at the end of the 15th century when, under the influence of the Dominican friar Girolamo Savonarola, the Sala del Consiglio was constructed, later to be enlarged and renovated by Giorgio Vasari, duke Cosimo I’s architect.
During the Republican period, the enormous building constituted a self-sufficient world apart, to which women were not admitted and where the Priors and the Gonfalonier were obliged to remain day and night, during the two months when they held office.
On the top of the Palace there is the guard walk from where soldiers could survey the neighborough of the Palace. The chemin de ronde still preserves the embrasures used to throw down object on the enemies who could besiege the Palace. On the external wall there are also some loopholes for crossbow. But the beauty of this tour is look at the city as you have never seen before: a three hundred sixty degrees sight round the guard walk.