As a solo female traveler, I still vividly remember my first nervous yet exciting steps off the plane when I arrived in Florence for a week-long Italian adventure.
I had dreamed of visiting for years, but had no one to go with. Though apprehensive at first about navigating the city alone, those fears melted away as soon as I immersed myself in Florence’s beauty, culture, cuisine and warmth.
Now, after multiple solo trips there, I can confidently say Florence is one of the best destinations for women traveling independently.
Through my own experiences plus extensive tips gathered, this solo female travel guide to Florence covers everything you need to know to plan your own safe, fun and memorable women-only trip.
You’ll learn about staying safe, budgeting, sightseeing, activities, nightlife, meeting people and more so you can head to Italy’s enchanting capital with confidence.
As a solo female traveler these question may come in your mind, is Florence safe? What areas should you stay in? Is Florence expensive to visit? What things are fun to do alone? Is the nightlife in Florence good for solo female travelers?
The short answers are: Yes, Florence is generally very safe for solo female travelers if you take some basic precautions. The city center near the Duomo is best. Florence can be expensive but there are ways to save. There are amazing things to experience alone in Florence like food tours and cooking classes. The nightlife is good for mingling with other travelers.
This solo female travel guide to Florence will cover everything you need to know to plan your women-only trip. You’ll learn about:
- Staying safe as a solo woman in Florence
- The best areas to stay
- Budgeting and saving money
- Top attractions for solo travelers
- Fun things to do alone during the day and night
- Meeting other travelers and locals
- Getting around the city
- Useful Italian phrases
Let’s start planning your amazing solo vacation to Florence!
Staying Safe In Florence As A Solo Female Traveler
Safety is a top concern when visiting any new place alone. The good news is that Florence is considered very safe, especially compared to larger cities like Rome or Milan. Violent crime is rare and tourists are not often targeted.
A common travel scam in Florence is where local con artists pretend to be friendly by offering you flowers or friendship bracelets. They will then pressure you to pay an inflated price. Just say no thank you and keep walking.
Simply using common sense and being aware of potential risks will help ensure your safety in Florence.
The Best Areas To Stay In Florence As A Solo Woman
The most convenient and safest area to stay in Florence is right around the main tourist sites and the area called Duomo (named after the Santa Maria del Fiore cathedral).
This historic city center area puts you steps from top attractions like the Duomo, the Uffizi Gallery, Ponte Vecchio bridge, and various museums and landmarks along the Arno River.
You can find many cute boutique hotels, hostels, vacation rentals, and Airbnbs in this central zone that cater well to solo female travelers. This area is very walkable and has plenty of restaurants, gelato shops, cafes, and nightlife.
Some specific neighborhoods and streets to look at staying near include:
- Piazza Del Duomo – Right by the cathedral, main plaza, and shopping district
- Piazza Della Signoria – Next to the Uffizi Gallery and Palazzo Vecchio
- Along Via Dei Calzaiuoli – Major street connecting main plazas and sights
- Around Santa Croce Square – Lovely neighborhood by the Basilica di Santa Croce
I’d advise against staying too far outside the historic center, which can feel more deserted at night. The train station area specifically tends to be less safe due to higher rates of petty crimes.
When booking accommodation as a solo woman, look for places that mention extra security, 24-hour reception desks, safety deposit boxes, and secure card keys or locks. Female-only dorms in hostels are also ideal.
Choosing to stay in the Duomo area puts the city’s main attractions right at your doorstep while ensuring convenience and avoiding long walks alone late at night.
Is Florence Expensive To Visit? Budget Tips For Solo Travelers
Florence is certainly not a cheap city, as it’s a top tourist destination. That said, with some planning, budgeting, and wallet-friendly choices, you can explore Florence without breaking the bank.
Private single rooms in hostels are very affordable, costing around 50-70 EUR per night. Check Hostelworld. Shared female-only dorms cut costs further, with beds around 25-40 EUR per night.
Boutique hotels away from major sites and Airbnbs in residential areas offer lower average rates too. Expect to spend 80-120 EUR per night for your own budget hotel room or apartment.
Grocery shop at markets like Mercato Centrale for things like cheese, cured meats, bread, fruit, and wine. This will save over dining out every meal.
Have picnics in scenic spots like the Boboli Gardens. Grab a sandwich at a bakery for lunch.
Opt for cheap meal options like pizza al taglio (by the slice) and kebabs for 5-10 EUR from many takeaways.
Walk around outside and inside the Duomo Cathedral for free. Admire Santa Croce and admire Ponte Vecchio’s beauty from outside without paying for entry.
Reserve tickets for the top museums like the Uffizi and Accademia a few months in advance to avoid long ticket lines or high-season prices.
Join free walking tours of the city’s highlights. Tip what you can afford.
Florence is very walkable. Use just your feet to get between major landmarks.
Take advantage of dirt cheap public buses and trams vs taxis. Buy a 72-hour transit pass for just 12 EUR.
Takeaway: Is Florence cheap? Definitely not. But it doesn’t have to be super expensive either. Following budgets carefully, staying in affordable accommodation, eating cheap meals and picnics, and using money-saving sightseeing tips will let you enjoy Florence without overspending.
Must-Visit Places For Your Solo Female Trip To Florence
Now that you know about the city’s safety, accommodations, and saving money, let’s get to the fun stuff – what to actually see and do in Florence!
While there are dozens of museums, galleries, palaces, churches, and landmarks to explore, here are the absolute top attractions to visit on a first trip:
This awe-inspiring cathedral with its iconic giant dome is the pride and joy of Florence. The lines get extremely long so book tickets ahead of time. Be sure to also check out the Baptistery right across, with its detailed “Gates of Paradise” bronze doors.
One of the world’s best art museums, housing stunning works by da Vinci, Michelangelo, Raphael, Botticelli, and more. Again, skip the lines by reserving tickets for specific time slots.
Florence’s most famous bridge and pedestrian-only walkway lined with jewelry shops. Snap photos and gaze out at the river views.
Escape the crowds in these peaceful manicured gardens behind the Pitti Palace. Wander through fountains, sculptures, and shaded alleys.
The iconic panoramic viewpoint overlooking all of Florence. Come at sunset for magical views.
The city’s historic town hall with ornate rooms like the Hall of the Five Hundred. Guided tours bring the stories alive.
Basilica di Santa Croce
This massive Gothic church is the burial site of Michelangelo, Galileo, Machiavelli and more Italian luminaries.
Admire Michelangelo’s stunning original David statue inside this museum. Again, book ahead!
Those are the top places for your Florence itinerary. With so many world-class attractions, you’ll have an unforgettable time in Florence solo or not!
Fun Things To Do Alone In Florence During The Day And Night
Once you’ve knocked of the main tourist draws, there are lots of other fun activities to enjoy solo during your trip:
Take a Food Tour
What better place than Italy to savor delicious cuisine? Stroll through the Central Market and surrounding eateries sampling regional delights like pasta, panini, cheese, and gelato on tours like I’ll Take You To Bella Toscana.
Learn to Cook
Immerse yourself in Tuscan food culture with cooking classes at places like Cucina Lorenzo de Medici. Perfect your pasta-making skills and Italian recipes to take home.
Do a Day Trip to the Countryside
Head into the epic Tuscan countryside for wine tours, visits to charming hilltop villages like San Gimignano, relaxing at Tuscan vineyard estates like Castello Banfi, and more.
Take an Italian Language Class
How cool to return home from Florence speaking basic Italian? Try fun language lessons at places like Learn Italian in Florence.
Go Shopping on Via Tornabuoni
This elegant historic street is Florence’s central high fashion hub. Even window shopping is exciting with luxury brands like Gucci, Prada, and Ferragamo.
Roam Through Churches and Museums
In addition to main sites like the Uffizi and Duomo that need reservations, you can freely walk through and admire many other churches, museums, palaces, and galleries at your own pace.
Wander the Oltrarno District
Venture into Florence’s hip “other side of the Arno River” neighborhood to find artisan workshops, cute boutiques, cafes, and gelato while avoiding crowds.
Take a Bike Tour
Biking is a fast, fun way to cover lots of ground in Florence. Take a guided tour or rent your own wheels. There are great routes along the Arno.
See Live Music and Performances
Venues like La Cité host live jazz and other musical acts most nights. Check posters around town for any special festivals or free concerts happening too.
The possibilities are endless! With a bit of research, you’ll find so many more cool things to do in Florence solo during the days… and nights too, which leads us to:
Nightlife in Florence For The Solo Female Traveler
Florence’s nightlife scene is lively, but tends to be more low-key than major cities. You’ll find plenty of casual bars, pubs, and clubs to grab a drink, listen to music, and mingle. Here are tips for enjoying Florence’s nightlife as a woman traveling alone:
Head to Piazza Santo Spirito
This lively neighborhood square becomes an open-air party scene at night where locals congregate to socialize over Aperol spritzes and wine. Join in!
Check Out “Aperitivo” Scenes
Many bars offer discounted “aperitivo” drink and food specials from around 6 to 9pm nightly. It’s a fun way to meet other travelers.
Florence has so many charming wine bars and cozy lounges. Bar hop for a glass here and there while getting a taste of the local nightlife.
Stay at a Social Hostel
Hostels organize activities like family dinners, dance nights, wine tastings, tours, pub crawls and more. Great for meeting people if staying solo.
Take a Pub Crawl
Join organized bar crawls like Take Walks’ Florence Pub Crawl to hit the city’s hotspots with new friends.
See Live Music
Check out jazz clubs like La Cité Florence and JAZZ CLUB Firenze for an evening of music in good company.
Clubs like YAB draw a young crowd dancing to pop hits. Or check out Folklore Club for dancing to eclectic beats in a cave-like setting.
The nightlife areas around Piazza Santo Spirito or near Santa Croce square are most recommended for solo women, since they stay lively into the night. Avoid very quiet streets alone at night.
With an open-minded spirit of adventure, Florence’s friendly nightlife scene offers the solo female traveler plenty of ways to enjoy evenings out on the town safely and happily!
Meeting Other Travelers And Locals In Florence
One great way to combat any loneliness when traveling solo is to connect with other travelers and locals. Florence offers many fun opportunities to meet people:
- Chat with other travelers at your accommodation’s breakfast or bar. Travelers love swapping stories!
- Join tours and activities like walking tours, cooking classes, wine tours etc. They’re full of solo travelers who will become fast friends.
- Ask receptionist to recommend social activities happening locally like meetups, concerts, and festivals.
- Strike up conversations at cool local cafes, wine bars, and ice cream shops as you’re out exploring.
- Join Meetup.com groups in Florence for meetups and events open to visitors. Great way to meet locals.
- Say yes if a friendly local offers help with directions or food recommendations. Chat them up!
- Sit at communal tables vs isolated tables at restaurants and bars.
- If dining solo, sit at the bar vs. a table to interact with staff and others.
- Join the Solo Travel Society Florence Facebook group to connect with other women.
- Stay at social hostels with organized activities and mingle in common rooms.
Don’t be shy about putting yourself out there! Italians are very open and welcoming. With a few conversations, you’ll connect with friendly locals and fellow travelers in no time.
Getting Around Florence As A Solo Woman
Florence is extremely walkable given its compact city center. However, you have other good transportation options too:
Walking: Getting around the historic center, across the river, and between most attractions can easily be done on foot. Bring comfy walking shoes!
Bus: An extensive public bus system connects all parts of Florence. Buses are safe, especially during the day. Have your hotel call a taxi at night.
Train: High-speed trains like the Trenitalia Frecciarossa link Florence to other Italian cities like Rome and Venice. Useful for day trips outside town.
Taxi: Official yellow cabs can be costly. Ask hotels and restaurants to call licensed services on your behalf after dark.
Rideshares: Uber operates in Florence, offering an affordable and safe alternative to taxis at night.
Bicycle: Biking is popular in Florence. Join a bike tour or rent your own ride from shops like Florence by Bike. Use bike lanes when possible.
With Florence’s walkability plus great transit like buses, trains, taxis, and Uber, getting around without a car is easy. Your own two feet will likely serve you perfectly well to explore the sights.
Useful Italian Phrases To Know
Practicing a few key Italian phrases and vocabulary before your trip will help you better interact with locals, order food, get directions, etc. Here are some helpful words and expressions:
- Ciao – Hello
- Grazie – Thank you
- Prego – You’re welcome
- Mi scusi – Excuse me
- Dove – Where
- Bagno – Bathroom
- Il conto – The check
- Una birra/vino – One beer/wine
- Come stai? – How are you?
- Sto bene – I’m good
- Parli inglese? – Do you speak English?
- Non parlo italiano – I don’t speak Italian
- Aiuto! – Help!
- Di nulla – You’re welcome
- Buon giorno – Good morning
- Buona sera – Good evening
- Arrivederci – Goodbye
Even just mastering a few polite phrases like hello, thank you, and excuse me will help in your interactions. Locals appreciate you making an effort with their language!
Have An Amazing Solo Trip to Florence!
We hope this solo female travel guide gives you all the tips and confidence needed to plan an incredible trip to Florence.
The city is very safe, convenient, budget-friendly, and full of world-famous attractions.
You’ll eat amazing food, see beautiful art and sights, learn history and culture, enjoy nightlife, and meet wonderful locals and travelers.
Florence is the perfect place for your first overseas solo trip. So what are you waiting for? Start planning this life-changing adventure to Italy’s most enchanting city.
From safety to saving money and things to do, we’ve got you covered for the best solo vacation ever!
Let us know if you have any other Florence questions as you prepare for your women-only travels. And be sure to pack your sense of adventure. Happy travels!