Florence is one of the most exquisite and stunning cities in Europe. Bursting with history, culture, art, and cuisine, this incredible Renaissance City should feature on everyone’s bucket list.

Due to its popularity, Florence isn’t renowned for being a cheap destination. It’s also got endless accommodation options, so narrowing down where to stay in Florence can be tricky.

To help you out, we’ve created this guide on the best places to stay in Florence for any travel style and budget. Whether you’re into art and culture or nightlife and cuisine, we’ve got you covered. We’ve also included the best accommodation and things to do in each area, so you can figure out where’s best for you.

So, let’s get into it!


View over Florence river and city
Let me take you through my fav places in Florence!
Photo: @danielle_wyatt

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Where to Stay in Florence

Looking for a specific location? These are my highest recommendations for the best places to stay in Florence.

Apartment with Spectacular Terrace | Best Airbnb in Florence

Apartment with Spectacular Terrace

This modern and trendy apartment boasts amazing views overlooking Piazza Santa Croce. Ideal for two guests, this Airbnb in Florence is full of small touches to help you enjoy a comfortable stay in the city center.

Piccolo Hotel | Best Hostel in Florence

Piccolo Hotel

Situated on the historic Piazza San Marco, this stunningly renovated budget hotel provides classic accommodation in Florence at great value. All rooms come with ensuite bathrooms and air-conditioning, and wifi is available throughout. A free breakfast is included in the room price, and the hotel’s central location means you’ll save money on public transport, too.

Alfieri9 | Best Hotel in Florence


Alfieri9 is my pick for the best hotel in Florence. This cozy three-star accommodation is set at the center of Santa Croce, within walking distance of restaurants, bars, and top attractions. Each room comes with modern amenities and features a balcony and free wifi.

Florence Neighborhood Guide

Florence is a small city that packs a big punch. It’s one of the most historically, culturally, and artistically important cities in Italy, and is famously the birthplace of the Italian Renaissance.

The Renaissance City is divided into five distinct districts. I highly recommend traveling around and visiting the areas you don’t end up staying in, to really make the most of your trip.

Near the Duomo is the historic city centre of Florence and is where you will find some of the best things to see in Florence. Here you’ll find winding streets, charming cafes, and eternal beauty around every turn. It’s the best place to stay to get to know Florence, ideal if you’re visiting for the first time.

If you’re visiting Florence on a budget, check out San Marco. It’s full of museums and is just a short walk from the city center.

San Spirito and San Frediano are full of the best hotels, bars, and restaurants and are the best areas to stay in for nightlife. Situated on the other side of the river, they’re a lively and vibrant part of the city.

If you’re looking for somewhere more authentic, Santa Croce is the coolest place to stay in Florence. It’s full of cafes, museums, and other cultural attractions. It’s also further out than the tourist areas, so you’ll get to experience life with the locals.

If you’re visiting Florence with family, I recommend staying near Piazza Santa Maria Novella. It’s right in central Florence and is a friendly residential neighborhood. It’s also well connected to the rest of the city, so getting around is stress-free.

Still not sure which is the best area in Florence to stay in? Don’t worry, there’s a more in-depth guide below.

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Florence Neighborhood Guide – Places to Stay in Florence

If you’re not sure which neighborhood is best for you, take a look at my 5 best neighborhoods in Florence in more detail below. Each is a little different than the last, so they’re all worth a visit even if you don’t stay there!



Home to the epic dome at Santa Maria del Fiore, which is the tourist center of the city. Lots of cafes, bars, and restaurants surround this landmark.

San Marco, Florence

San Marco

A more residential area that is a bit farther away but is also cheaper. Still plenty of activities and restaurants around.

San Spirito San Frediano, Florence

San Spirito/San Frediano

Located on the other side of the Arno River, this neighborhood is full of cool bars and local haunts. Students and locals love to come here and sit in the piazzas.

Basilica of Santa Croce

Santa Croce

A tucked-away area very close to the Duomo but equally as interesting. Packed with activities, bars, and restaurants. Also, closer to the Arno.

Santa Maria Novella

Santa Maria Novella

A well-connected part of the city that is close to all of Florence’s main attractions. Busy and bustling.

1. Duomo – Where to Stay in Florence for your First Visit

Duomo is the historic district and located in central Florence. It is the most famous neighborhood in the city and is where you’ll find iconic landmarks, including the Museo Nazionale del Bargello and Giotto’s Campanile.

Duomo is a neighborhood that bursts with life and excitement. It’s made up of winding cobblestone streets, grand piazzas, and charming cafes and boutique shops that can be found at every turn. If you’re traveling to Florence for the first time, it’s the best place to stay to get to know the city.

the famous duomo building in downtown florence italy
Duomo is perfect for first-time visitors
Photo: Christina Gray

MDR Duomo Red Apartment | Best Airbnb in Duomo

MDR Duomo Red Apartment

This apartment is situated right next to Duomo, and is a short walk from the abundance of restaurants on offer in San Lorenzo. This Italian Airbnb comfortably sleeps four guests and comes with wifi and a kitchenette. It’s modern and spacious, providing a comfortable base in the heart of the action.

Hotel Costantini | Best Hotel in Duomo

Hotel Costantini

This quaint and traditional hotel provides spacious rooms suitable for couples or families. It’s in a central location a short walk away from some of Florence’s top attractions, including Ponte Vecchio and the Uffizi Gallery.

Laurus Al Duomo | Best Hotel in Duomo

Laurus Al Duomo

Each room in this hotel is spacious, with wooden floors and light furnishings creating a bright and comfortable base for your travels in Florence. A panoramic roof terrace is open to visitors during the warmer months, where you can enjoy a drink and admire the views over the city. The hotel is close to shops, restaurants, and Santa Maria Novella Station, providing easy access around Florence.

Academy Hostel | Best Hostel in Duomo

Academy Hostel

Charming and cozy, Academy Hostel is one of the best hostels in Florence. It is centrally located in the Duomo neighborhood and is close to landmarks, restaurants, bars and beyond! This home away from home has a relaxing environment, modern décor, and, best of all, no bunk beds!

Things to See and Do in Duomo:

  1. Check out the magnificent Duomo, the Cattedrale di Santa Maria del Fiore.
  2. Climb to the top of Brunelleschi’s Dome and enjoy incredible views out over the city.
  3. Savor delicious sandwiches, panini and more at I’ Girone De’ Ghiotti.
  4. See an amazing collection of Italian Renaissance sculptures at Museo Nazionale del Bargello.
  5. Bite into an awesome slice of homemade pizza at Gustarium.
  6. Tour the ornate and opulent Battistero di San Giovanni.
  7. Relax with a cappuccino at Il Vinile.
  8. Enjoy fun cocktails and microbrews at the Mayday Club.
  9. Explore the grand and extraordinary Chiesa e Museo di Orsanmichele.
  10. Admire some of the best artwork at the Uffizi Gallery.
  11. Walk through grandeur at the Pitti Palace.
  12. Check out the Florence Cathedral, AKA Cathedral of Santa Maria del Fiore.
  13. Climb to the top of the dome of the Florence Cathedral.
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2. San Marco – Where to Stay in Florence on a Budget

San Marco is a residential and diverse neighborhood a short walk from the city center. Here you’ll find everything from classic art and historic landmarks to modern museums and innovative restaurants.

In addition to being a cultural hotspot, San Marco is where you’ll find a high concentration of budget accommodations. It attracts loads of backpackers and students, creating a fun and vibrant atmosphere.

San Marco, Florence

Beautiful and Modern Private Room | Best Airbnb in San Marco

Beautiful and Modern Private Room

This Airbnb in Florence is great value for money. Benefitting from large windows, guests can enjoy plenty of natural light and great views of the surroundings. It’s located centrally so you can save money on public transport, and can sleep up to two people.

Piccolo Hotel | Best Budget Accommodation in San Marco

Piccolo Hotel

Situated on the historic Piazza San Marco, this beautifully renovated budget hotel provides classic accommodation in Florence. All rooms come with ensuite bathrooms and air-conditioning, and wifi is available throughout. A free breakfast is included in the room price, and the hotel’s central location means you’ll save money on public transport, too.

Loggia Fiorentina | Best Hotel in San Marco

Loggia Fiorentina

Loggia Fiorentina is a luxury hotel that’s situated in the centre of Florence. It’s close to the city’s main attractions and is near to restaurants, bars and museums. Rooms come with private bathrooms, a workspace, and wifi. There’s a stylish bar onsite, and breakfast is available each morning.

Hotel St. James | Best Hotel in San Marco

Hotel St. James

This family and pet-friendly hotel is a charming place to stay in Florence. Rooms are spacious, and cheap given the central location. You’ll be within walking distance of Duomo and San Marco Museum, as well as shops, markets and restaurants.

Things to See and Do in San Marco:

  1. Browse the largest collection of sacred art in the city at the Museo di San Marco.
  2. Enjoy a mouthwatering piece of pizza or plate of pasta at Trattoria Pizzeria San Gallo.
  3. See Michelangelo’s world-famous Statue of David at the Accademia Gallery, the site of Europe’s first drawing school.
  4. Sip a classic apertivo at Kitsch Devx Firenze.
  5. Visit the Basilica della Santissima Anunziata – Chiesa di Santa Maria della Scala and marvel at the architectural detail.
  6. Drink a classic cocktail or cappuccino on the terrace of Brunellesco.
  7. Explore the Museo degli Innocenti and see a wonderful collection of Tuscan art.
  8. Admire the best of Renaissance artwork at the Uffizi Gallery.
  9. Check out the gorgeous Pitti Palace.

3. San Spirito/San Frediano – Where to Stay in Florence for Nightlife

Located in Oltrarno on the other side of the river, San Spirito and San Frediano are two neighborhoods that combine to create one of the coolest areas to stay in Florence.

They boast a vibrant and artistic atmosphere and it’s here that you’ll find the best nightlife in the city. Whether you want to enjoy sunset cocktails or dance the night away, there’s something for everyone in San Spirito/San Frediano.

San Spirito San Frediano, Florence
This area is bustling by both day and night

Studio in Santo Spirito | Best Airbnb in San Spirito/San Frediano

Studio in Santo Spirito

This studio is small but functional, and is suitable for two guests visiting Florence. Amenities include a kitchenette and wifi, and all the essentials are provided. Vibrant bars and restaurants are just a stone’s throw away, and cultural and historical attractions are within walking distance.

Mia Palace B&B and Hostel | Best Hostel in San Spirito/San Frediano

Mia Palace B&B and Hostel

This cosy hostel is a short walk from San Spirito. A free breakfast is provided, and internet access is available throughout the property. Rooms are simple but comfortable, with various private and dorm options available. The Arno River is right on the doorstep, with more of Florence’s top attractions within walking distance.

Casa Santo Nome di Gesu | Best Hotel in San Spirito/San Frediano

Casa Santo Nome di Gesu

This hotel is set in a stunning traditional building just moments away from the Arno River. Rooms accommodate all group sizes, from solo travelers to larger families. The hotel feels more like a grand palace, with stunning gardens and furnishings throughout. Breakfast is available, and free wifi is provided.

Horto Convento | Best Hotel in San Spirito/San Frediano

Horto Convento

Hotel Convento is a stunning four-star hotel in Florence with an excellent location. It’s close to restaurants, bars, and several popular tourist attractions. The hotel comes complete with a garden and terrace, and each room enjoys an ensuite bathroom. This is one of the best luxury hotels in Florence for its location and amenities.

Things to See and Do in San Spirito/San Frediano:

  1. Take a stroll through the charming Piazza Santo Spirito, which is home to bars, bistros, cafes, and a delightful local market.
  2. Grab a drink at Volume, a cosy Florentine pub.
  3. Pop inside the Basilica di Santo Spirito and see an elaborate interior designed by Brunelleschi.
  4. Enjoy urbane cocktails and a relaxed atmosphere at Rasputin, a secret bar in Florence.
  5. Wander the winding streets and alleyways of atmospheric San Frediano.
  6. Listen to great music as you enjoy refreshing drinks at NOF Club.
  7. Marvel at the detail of Santa Maria del Carmine, an elegant and intricate church.
  8. Relax with a pint at The Gate Pub.
  9. Tease your taste buds and indulge in delicious Italian fare at IO osteria personale.
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4. Santa Croce – Coolest Place to Stay in Florence

Santa Croce is one of Florence’s best-kept secrets. It’s situated close to Duomo and the city centre, but is still far enough away enough that it retains its authentic charm and feel.

A great base for culture vultures, Santa Croce is home to a myriad of museums, art galleries, and landmarks. Here, you can enjoy a relaxing day of exploring the city without the hoards of tourists.

Santa Croce, Florence
Experience Florence without the tourist crowds

Apartment with Spectacular Terrace | Best Airbnb in Santa Croce

Apartment with Spectacular Terrace

This modern and trendy apartment boasts amazing views overlooking Piazza Santa Croce. Ideal for two guests, this Airbnb in Florence is full of small touches to help you enjoy a comfortable stay in the city center.

Tourist House Santa Croce | Best Hostel in Santa Croce

Tourist House Santa Croce best hostels in Florence

Surrounded by cafes, bars and restaurants, this guesthouse is ideally located for exploring the city. Rooms are traditionally decorated, and free wifi is available throughout. If you’re staying in Florence for a weekend or longer, this is a good place to base yourself.

Alfieri9 | Best Hotel in Santa Croce


Alfieri9 is a cosy three-star hotel at the heart of Santa Croce. Staying here, you’ll be close to public transport, restaurants, bars, and attractions. Each room comes complete with wifi, and the hotel houses a terrace and dry cleaning service.

La Maison du Sage | Best Hotel in Santa Croce

La Maison du Sage

Each room in this hotel is elegantly and intricately decorated with wooden furnishings and vibrant colours. It is located steps away from the Santa Croce Basilica and Ponte Vecchio, as well as bars and restaurants. Family rooms are available and the hotel is pet-friendly, with free wifi throughout.

Things to See and Do in Santa Croce:

  1. See incredible architecture, ornate interiors and colourful stained glass at the Basilica di Santa Croce.
  2. Dine on fresh and delicious Italian dishes at Adagio.
  3. Enjoy a cocktail or cappuccino in Piazza Santa Croce and indulge in a little people watching.
  4. Explore Pazzi Chapel, one of the first buildings completed in the Renaissance style.
  5. Sample great food and good drinks for budget-friendly prices at the lively Beer House Club.
  6. Sip modern cocktails at Bitter Bar, a hip speakeasy at the heart of Florence.
  7. Visit Museo dell’Opera di Santa Croce, a massive gothic church which houses the remains of Michelangelo and Galileo, among others notable Europeans.
  8. Take a photo of the Ponte Vecchio from the Arno River.

5. Santa Maria Novella – Where to Stay in Florence for Families

Santa Maria Novella is often the first neighborhood travelers see upon arriving in Florence. It’s home to the main train station, and is well-connected to the rest of the city or for taking some of the Florence day trips.

Santa Maria Novella is also where you’ll find Parco Delle Cascine, an expansive park with plenty of space to run around. It’s also bustling with places to visit, blending lush landscapes and incredible landmarks. If you’re visiting with family, this is the best neighborhood to stay in.

New Hostel Florence | Best Hostel in Santa Maria Novella

New Hostel Florence

Less than a 10-minute walk from the city’s main train station, this Florence hostel is a perfect base from which to explore the city. The hostel has comfortable rooms, a fully equipped kitchen and a relaxing common area. Nearby, you’ll find a great variety of cafes, restaurants, bars, and shops.

Porta Faenza | Best Hotel in Santa Maria Novella

Porta Faenza

Conveniently located at the centre of Florence, Porta Faenza is an ideal base for families in Santa Maria Novella. This three-star hotel has a coffee bar, on-site restaurants, and a stylish lounge bar. Rooms are spacious, comfortable and come in a variety of sizes to cater to any family!

Mia Cara | Best Hotel in Santa Maria Novella

Mia Cara

Mia Cara is a great three-star hotel in Florence. It is strategically located at the centre of the city and is within walking distance of Ponte Vecchio, the Uffizi, and the Duomo. Rooms are bright and comfortable, and there’s a kids’ play area right on site.

Quaint Home near Duomo | Best Airbnb in Santa Maria Novella

Quaint Home near Duomo

This beautiful loft has a homey feeling, with cozy couches and a living space that’s perfect for kids. The decor is pretty traditional, which gives off that nostalgic old-Italian feel.

Things to See and Do in Santa Maria Novella:

  1. Wander through the Piazza di Santa Maria Novella.
  2. Excite your senses and eat incredible food at Chianineria – Trattoria dall’Oste.
  3. See the incredible Basilica of Santa Maria Novella.
  4. Pack a picnic and enjoy an afternoon in verdant and tranquil Parco Delle Cascine.
  5. Visit the Chiesa di Ognissanti, a small but important Italian Renaissance church where Botticelli is buried.
  6. Dine on delicious Italian dishes, including pasta, pizza and steak at the family-friendly Ristorante Braceria Santa Maria Novella.
  7. Browse interesting works of modern art at Museo Novecento.
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FAQ about Finding a Place to Stay in Florence

Here’s what people usually ask us about the areas of Florence and where to stay.

What To Pack For Florence

Pants, socks, underwear, soap?! Take it from me, packing for a hostel stay is not always quite as straightforward as it seems. Working out what to bring and what to leave at home is an art I have perfected over many years.

Don’t Let Snorers Keep You Awake!
Don’t Let Snorers Keep You Awake!

Ear Plugs

Snoring dorm-mates can ruin your nights rest and seriously damage the hostel experience. This is why I always travel with a pack of decent ear plugs.

Keep your laundry organized and stink free
Keep your laundry organized and stink free

Hanging Laundry Bag

Trust us, this is an absolute game changer. Super compact, a hanging mesh laundry bag stops your dirty clothes from stinking, you don’t know how much you need one of these… so just get it, thank us later.

Stay Dry With a Micro Towel
Stay Dry With a Micro Towel

Sea To Summit Micro Towel

Hostel towels are scummy and take forever to dry. Microfibre towels dry quickly, are compact, lightweight, and can be used as a blanket or yoga mat if need be.

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Make Some New Buddies…

Monopoly Deal

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Reduce Plastic – Bring a Water Bottle!

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Check out my definitive Hotel Packing list for even more top packing tips!

Don’t Forget Travel Insurance for Florence

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Final Thoughts on Where to Stay in Florence

Florence is an incredible city, bursting with culture, art and excitement. With its amazing food and incredible sights, Florence is certainly one of the best places to visit in Italy.

If you’re still unsure where to stay in Florence, you can’t go wrong with Piccolo Hotel. With a fantastic location and free breakfast, it’s budget-friendly and ticks all the boxes for a great stay in Florence.

My recommendation for the best hotel accommodation in Florence is Alfieri9. Charming and cosy, this hotel is close to the centre of the city and offers a great range of modern amenities.

Have I missed anything? Let us know in the comments!

Looking for more info on travelling to Florence and Italy?
a statue of a white horse with wings in a garden in florence italy
See you in Florence!
Photo: Christina Grayt

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