Boboli Gardens, Florence

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Italy >> Florence >> Attractions >> Boboli Gardens, Florence

Boboli Gardens, Florence

History

The Boboli Gardens, located in the city of Florence in Italy is one of the most beautiful gardens in Italy, extending from the hill behind the Pitti Palace all the way to the Porta Romana. The gardens have themselves undergone several stages of renovation and restructuring throughout their history. The first of a series of works on the gardens started in close proximity to the place, following its purchase by Cosimo I de´ Medici and by his wife Eleonora di Toledo. The garden’s initial plan was drawn up by Niccolò Tribolo, although the work on the palace continued post his demise in the year 1550, with architects such as Giorgio Vasari along with Bartolomeo Ammannati and Bernardo Buontalenti under the reign of Francis I taking it up.

The gardens expansion continued throughout the 17th, 18th and the 19th centuries, thanks mainly to The Medici and The Lorraine families. Several complexes were added, as well as meadows, avenues and some small groves, which transformed the museum into an outdoor one with both 16th and 17th century Roman statues on exhibit.

The gardens expansion began with the "Amphitheatre", the original formed by “edges and evergreen meadows”, only to be later replaced by a stone one ornamented with statues of the Fountain of the Ocean created by Giambologna, the small "Grotto of Madama", and the "Large Grotto", started by Vasari and finshed by Ammannati and Buontalenti between the years 1583 and 1593. The statues are stunning examples of the Mannerism architecture and culture. The fountain itself is divided into three main sections, and is decorated both within and from the outside with stalatites, and generous vegetation. The first part has been painted so to create the semblance of a natural grotto, which is a shelter for shepherds and serves the purpose of protecting them from wildlife. It originally displayed the Prisoners of Michelangelo, shifted here after it had become a part of the Medici collection, although the originals have now been replaced by copies. Other rooms in the gardens display exhibits such as the "Bathing Venus" of Giambologna and the group of "Paris and Hellen" of Vincenzo de Rossi.

Best time to visit

Florence is at its finest in the spring (March to May) and fall (September to mid-November).

Trivia

The gardens require constant restoration and maintenance, due to which a schedule has been established for their seasonal, yearly and long-term care.

Timing

Every day except for the first and the last Monday of each month.

8:15 am – 4:30 pm from November to February

8:15 am – 5:30 pm March

8:15 am – 6:30 pm April, May, September and October

8:15 am – 7:30 pm June, July and August


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