Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Italy Day 5 Trucking on to Florence!

We woke up early and caught a train to Florence.  It took a couple of hours to get there, but had some excellent views, as we had to cross the Apennine mountain range to get to Florence.

One last view of our Milan hotel before we left.

The Milan train station is also where we met an interesting foe, the pay toilet.  Throughout our trip, the public bathrooms ranged from 0.3 – 1 euro per entry.  It might seem ridiculous to have to pay to use the toilet, but if you think about it some more, it might not be that silly.  By paying to use the bathrooms, they have the money to actually maintain and keep them clean, and these were some of the cleanest public bathrooms I’ve been in.  It also takes away the need to go into a restaurant just to use the bathroom.  So you don’t need to feel obligated to buy some fries when you go into McDonalds for the bathroom, because it’s just cheaper to use the paid toilet!
I love the green shutters.

The buildings in Florence in Milan were in a really interesting stage of shabby chic.

After checking into our hotel, we walked to Florence’s Duomo and climbed all 414 steps of the Campanile.  The views from the top were definitely worth the climb.  There was even a couple who climbed to the top to take wedding photos!  I was so impressed that she climbed it in her dress! 

Duomo, now in Florence!

414 steps to the top and we climbed them all.

View of the Duomo from the Campanile.

Steve posing with the Duomo.

One of the great views from the top.

Looking down on the street artists outside the Duomo.

Why aren't there shop buildings that are this pretty back in the US? And look! A carousel!

They climbed all the way to the top to take wedding photos.  I was so impressed!

There were 3 or maybe 4 platforms on the way up where you could stop and take in the view.  No doubt about it, this was definitely a nicer view than Cairo.

The ropes for the bells used to pass through this grate, but now they are all automated.

 Follow our journey:

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