Scuola Leonardo da Vinci - Scuola di lingua italiana in Italia

Italian language school "Scuola Leonardo da Vinci ®"

Learn Italian in Florence, Milan, Rome and Siena
Officially authorized by the Italian Ministry of Education

Scuola Leonardo da Vinci ®

Useful tips for your language travel in Florence

As follow you can find some useful information to organize your language travel to Florence.



Firenze S.M.N. is the main railway station of Florence.
There are several night and Eurocity day connections with Italy. People younger than 26 years of age may receive special discounts. Reservations for sleeping cars or couchettes should be made as early as possible, as the trains to Italy are often overbooked, especially in summer. Check time schedules on:


Upon request Scuola Leonardo da Vinci can offer you a transfer service from the Firenze/Pisa airports or from the Firenze Main Railway Station to your accommodation. Please reserve these services directly with the school, at least one week before your arrival date, supplying them with all necessary arrival info, such as arrival date, place, and time, flight or train number and your cell phone number if possible.

For transfer costs please consult the transfer page.

If you book a transfer: Your driver will be waiting for you right in front of the gate or at the railway track at the railway station, holding a sign with the name SCUOLA LEONARDO DA VINCI®.


If you don’t reserve a personal transfer, on your arrival in Florence we recommend that you take a taxi to your accommodation. Taxis are easily found at the TAXI stations in front of the airport as well as the train station. Don’t worry if you don’t speak any Italian! It is enough just to show the address to the driver.


There is a shuttle bus which runs from the airport to the city center (Florence Main Railway Station Santa Maria Novella), provided by the local bus company ‘ATAF’. Tickets can be purchased on board.


The airport in Pisa is 80 kilometers from Florence. There is a shuttle bus service called ‘Terravision’. This service leaves the Pisa International Airport and arrives at the Main Railway Station in Florence in about 85 minutes. For information please consult:

There is also a train service to and from Pisa airport and Florence Main Railway Station. Check Italian Railways for timetable:


Do you want to rent a car immediately after your arrival in Florence? Amrent’s operating offices are at a short distance from the airport of Florence ‘Amerigo Vespucci’ and are connected by a free shuttle service. The staff of Amrent will welcome you upon arrival and drive you to their offices to pick up your reserved car. Amrent also offers a special service allowing clients to pick up and return cars at predetermined locations of companies, hotels and resorts in and around Florence. Therefore consult:
To reserve with Avis you can consult:


In the city of Firenze, parking is free only for residents (parking places marked with white paint). For non residents there are parking places that you can use by paying hour or daily rates (parking places marked with blue paint) or you could use a car park.
On you’ll find some car parks.

Also keep in mind, that once a week many streets of Florence are cleaned between midnight and 7am. During this night you will have to park your car elsewhere or it will be towed. Upon arrival please ask your landlord on which night the street cleaning “pulizia della strada” takes place in the area. Never leave valuables in your car.


In Italy: 339-6907685     From abroad: +39-339-6907685


There are two different kinds of street numbers in Florence: red ones for shops and blue ones for private homes. An «r» after the number indicates that the number is a red one. It is easy to find, for instance, a red street number 24 which is followed by a blue street number 8.


ATAF is the company which runs a network of buses in the city and its surroundings. Single tickets are available at the “Tabacchi”-bars (distinguished by a rectangular T-sign), at most newspaper stands (giornalai) and the ATAF office. Single tickets are only valid if you stamp/validate them in the machines which are found inside the bus.

Students aged 27 and under, who are enrolled at the Leonardo da Vinci school, can obtain a student ATAF card. This card costs 9 Euros. With this card you can buy a monthly student ATAF pass, which costs 23 Euros (instead of the standard 35 Euros). This pass is recommended for students that stay in Florence for longer than one month. To request a pass, students must fill in the application form which is found at

To the application form, you must also attach your Certificate of Attendance at the Scuola Leonardo da Vinci (on which the start date and the end date of the course
will be indicated), as well as a passport photo.

Students can then take these documents to the ATAF office in the Piazza Stazione (by the ramp near to the clock) to obtain the card and buy a monthly student pass. The office is open from Monday to Saturday from 7:30 to 19:30. The school’s secretary is at students’ disposal to help filling in the form



The country code for Italy is «39»:

  • “Fixed line": The country code must always be followed by the «0» before the area code; i.e. Scuola Leonardo da Vinci: +39-055-261181
  • "Mobile phone": There will never be the «0» before the number. I.e. Scuola Leonardo da Vinci Emergency number on arrival: +39-339-6907685

If you want to hire (or buy) a cell phone with an Italian SIM card or to hire an Internet Key, we suggest you the following shops:

  • Studentcells: corso dei Tintori 29r - - open Mon - Fri, 10am - 6pm
  • Cyberlink Internet Café: via del Giglio 9r - - daily open 9:30am - midnight

You can also buy SIM cards in shops called “Tabacchi” or in phone shops like Vodafone, TIM, Wind or «3».


  • Police: 112 or 113
  • Medical Emergency Service (ambulanza): 118

055-4242 / 055-4798 / 055-4390


  • Local Time: Italy uses Central European Time (CET). London: -1; New York: -6; Los Angeles: -9; Tokyo: +8. From the end of March to the end of October the clocks in Italy are turned ahead one hour (Central European Summer Time - CEST).
  • Change of summer/winter time will be made always on Sunday morning between 2am and 3am; pay attention to your time table if you are travelling on this weekend:
  • Italy uses a 220 Volts/AC system. There are different sockets for appliances of low and high voltage. There is no problem for appliances with a Euro plug. For other plugs, adapters are usually necessary.
  • Tap water in Florence is drinkable although it doesn’t have a very nice taste.
  • How to dress (climate): Florence has cold winter and hot summer; spring and fall are mild. It is changeable and often unforeseeable. It is therefore advisable to come prepared for every season with a flexible and varied wardrobe. A good wind breaker which can also serve as a raincoat may prove useful even in mid- summer.
  • Especially in Summer Florence is full of mosquitoes. We suggest that you buy a plug-in mosquito killer (‘Vape’/’Baygol’), available in every supermarket.
  • Florence is a safe city, but nevertheless you should take note of a few things. You should always, but especially in buses, trains and on crowded places like the market, mind your bags and purses. When walking along the street, keep your bag on the opposite side of the road. Do not carry much money around in your handbag and take only a copy of your passport with you.
  • It is unusual to leave tips. A good rule of thumb is to leave around 5% in a pizzeria or humble trattoria, slightly more in more up-market places - but never more than 10%.
  • Free WIFI Hotspots (free access for one hour a day): piazza della Signoria, piazzale Michelangelo, piazza Santo Spirito, piazza Santa Croce, piazza Ghiberti, piazzale delle Cascine and piazza SS. Annunziata. To get connected for free, simply search for wireless connections on your laptop or iPhone, and you will see a connection called ‘Firenzewifi’. Connect and open a browser page, you will find a webpage that will ask you to register and enter your Italian cellphone number. Once registered, call the local number 055-465-0034 from your cell phone and you will receive a password via a text message. Enter the password and you are online!
    Another free WIFI Hotspot, just next door to our school: Biblioteca delle Oblate: via dell’Oriuolo 26.
  • Folk festivals in Florence: Lo scoppio del carro (Easter, piazza Duomo); The feast of the Cricket (festa del Grillo; Ascension, Parco delle Cascine); The Fires of Saint John (24th June, Piazzale Michelangelo), La Rificolona (7th September).
  • Festivals in Florence: International Music Festival (Maggio Musicale, classic), Festival of Creativity (communication, art and creativity), Festival dei Popoli (film festival).
  • Our school is closed on the following national and local holidays: January 6th, Easter Monday, April 25th, May 1st, June 2nd, June 24th, August 15th, November 1st and December 8th.
  • Sightseeing buses: Tickets and information available at the Main Railway Station (piazza della Stazione 1r).
  • Are you planning a one-day trip? We suggest that you visit the following places in Florence’s surrounding area: Fiesole (Roman Theatre), Siena, San Gimignano, Arezzo, Bologna, Chianti (wine area and marvellous countryside), Lucca, Pisa (tower), Viareggio (beach), Elba Island, Cinque Terre.


The school can provide a doctor any time. Addresses of doctors can be found in the yellow pages: Look for “medici” (doctors) or “dentisti” (dentists). The Consolates have a list of doctors speaking your mother tongue. In emergency cases (also at night and on Sundays) call the “Guardia medica”: 118

  • The first-aid service (“pronto soccorso”, usually to be found in all hospitals) is free of charge and without formalities for anyone who is in need:
    Hospital S. Maria Nuova (in front of the school), piazza S. Maria Nuova 1: 055-69381 (055-27581)
  • The “24h Medical Service” is in via Lorenzo Magnifico 59: 055-475-411
    The “24h Medical Service”, which also cooperates with private insurers, has multi-lingual doctors who both see patients at the surgery and make house visits.
  • Misericordia Firenze: piazza Duomo 20r/vicolo Adimari 1: 848-812-221.
    The outpatient department is open Monday to Friday, from 2pm to 4pm and is staffed by multi-lingual doctors.

Pharmacies usually have a large selection of medicine and the pharmacists are highly qualified to give medical advice. The following pharmacies are always open:

  • Farmacia Comunale Main Railway Station  055-216761 
  • Farmacia all’Insegna del Moro piazza San Giovanni 20r - 055-211343
  • Farmacia Molteni via Calzaiuoli 7r - 055-215472

Information for opening hours of pharmacies call:


The main shopping streets in the center are: via Roma, via Tornabuoni, via Calzaiuoli and via della Vigna Nuova. Most shops in the center are open daily. Most Supermarkets and shops outside the center are closed on Sundays.


  • COOP: Mon - Sat, 8:00am - 7:00pm (via Cimabue 49, via Carlo del Prete 106, via Erbosa 36a)
  • ESSELUNGA: Mon - Sat, 8:00am - 8:30pm (viale de Amicis 89b, via Milanesi 32, via Masaccio 274)
  • STANDA: Mon - Sat, 8:30am - 8:00pm (piazza Dalmazia 14, viale dei Mille 140)

Supermarkets open also on Sundays: BILLA, via Pietrapiana 42 / METÁ, Corso dei Tintori 18/22r


  • Mercato Centrale: via dell’Ariento (alimentare, aperto ogni mattina dal martedì al sabato)
  • Mercato di San Lorenzo: piazza San Lorenzo (non alimentare, turistico, aperto giornalmente dalle 9 alle 20; chiuso il lunedì
  • Mercato delle Cascine: viale Abramo Lincoln (non alimentare, prezzi bassi, aperto ogni martedì mattina)


USA 6 8 10 12 14 16 18
Britain 8 10 12 14 16 18 20
Europe 36 38 40 42 44 46 48


USA 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14
Britain 5 6 7 8 10½ 11½ 12½
Europe 37 37½ 38 38½ 39 39½ 40 40½ 41 42 43 44 45



Wash & Dry:

  • Via dei Servi 105r
  • Via Nazionale 129r
  • Via de’ Serragli 87r
  • Viale Morgagni 21r
  • Via Ghibellina 143r
  • Via della Scala 52-54r
  • Via G. P. Orsini 39r
  • Via degli Alfani 24b/r
  • Via Guelfa 22a/r

All are open daily from 8am to 10pm. Use liquid soap rather than powder, Florence water is pretty hard.

You will need to work with degrees Celsius. To calculate: [Fahrenheit - 32] ÷ 1,8 = Celsius; (32° Fahrenheit = 0° Celsius; 104° F = 40° C; 140° F = 60° C; 194° F = 90° C).


  • Nettare d’Uva: via degli Artisti; 055-588-734
  • Freni Carmelo: via Calimala 1; 055-239-6647


  • Giuliano Coiffeur: Via delle Oche 33; 055-214292


  • Etching: via dei Bentaccordi 1r
  • Officina Profumo Santa Maria Novella: via della Scala 16r


Don’t forget that in most bars and coffee shops you pay half price when consuming at the counter (al banco) in comparison to sitting down (al tavolo). In some bars and coffee shops, by showing the student card, you can sit down and pay the ‘counter’ price if you serve yourself:

  • Bar Posta, via Pellicceria 1 (in front of Main Post Office), open daily (in and outdoor)


  • Biblioteca delle Oblate: via dell'Oriuolo 26 (close to our school)
  • Il Girasole: via Folco Portinari
  • Il Guelfo Brillo: via Pellicceria 8r
  • Zio Gigi: via Folco Portinari 7r
  • Eby's Bar: via dell'Oriuolo 5r
  • Shot cafè: via dei Pucci 5a
  • I Due Fratellini: via Cimatori 38r (panini to take away)
  • Il Fiorino: via dei Servi 40r
  • Vinaino di Parte Guelfa: via Val di Lamona 6r (panini to take away)

Are you looking for gluten-free food?

  • La Gratella: via Guelfa 81; 055-211-292 (Tuscan specialities, pizza)
  • i' Toscano: via Guelfa 70r; 055-215-475 (Tuscan specialities)


  • Trattoria Anita: via Parlascio 2r; 055-218698 (Sunday closed)
  • Trattoria Antica Porta: via Senese 23r; 055-220-527 (Monday closed)
  • Osteria delle Belle Donne: via delle Belle Donne 16; 055-238-2609 (open daily)
  • Trattoria da Benvenuto: via Mosca 16r; 055-214833 (Sunday closed)
  • Ristorante Boccanegra: via Ghibellina 124r; 055-2001098 (open daily)
  • Ristorante Cambi: via Sant'Onofrio 1r; 055-217-134 (Sunday closed)
  • Golden View Open Bar: via de' Bardi 58; 055-214-502 (open daily)
  • Ristorante La Grotta Guelfa: via Pellicceria 5r; 055-210-042 (open daily)
  • Trattoria da Pennello: via Dante Alighieri 4r; 055-294848 (Sunday and Monday closed)
  • Trattoria da Ruggero: via Senese 89; 055-220-542 (open Thu - Mon)
  • Trattoria Il Troia: via della Porcellana 25; 055-212-691 (open Thu - Fri)
  • Pizzeria Yellow Bar: via del Proconsolo 39r; 055-211-766 (Tuesday night closed)
  • Trattoria Zio Gigi: via Portinari 7r; 055-215584 (Sunday closed)


  • La Carraia: piazza N. Sauro 25r (across the “ponte alla Carraia”, only open in summer till 11pm)
  • Dei Neri: via dei Neri 26r (in the historical center, open daily till midnight)
  • Perché No: via dei Tavolini 19r (in the historical center, open daily till 11:30pm (except: Tue))
  • Grom: via del Campanile (in the historical center, open daily till 12pm (in winter till 11pm))
  • Carabé: via Ricasoli 60r (in the historical center, open daily till 1am)
  • Vivoli: via Isola delle Stinche 7r (in the historical center, open Tue - Sun till 9pm (summer till 12pm)


  • Alessi: via delle Oche 27
  • Bevo Vino: via di San Niccolò 59
  • Cantinetta di Verazzano: via dei Tavolini 18r
  • Coquinarius: via delle Oche 15



Most places are open daily; discos are open from 10pm to 4am. Open air places are only open in summer.

  • Art Bar: via del Moro 4r (bar, happy hour, great cocktails with fresh fruits)
  • Central Park: parco delle Cascine (big international open air disco)
  • Flò: piazzale Michelangelo 84 (cocktails 7pm - 3am, open air bar with great view)
  • Kitsch: viale Antonio Gramsci 1 (rich and tasty Tuscan “apericena” (cocktail and snacks))
  • Moyo: via de' Benci 23 (international cocktail bar)
  • Oibò: via de' Benci 53r (rich and tasty “apericena” (cocktail and snacks))
  • Old Store Williams: via Pellicceria 2/4r (Irish Pub)
  • Red Garter: via de' Benci 22r (disco, bar, karaoke, average age: 25, touristy)
  • Salamanca: via Ghibellina 80r (Spanish bar and restaurant)
  • Slowly Caffè: via Porta Rossa 63 (stylish bar with a small dancefloor, aperitivo)
  • Space Electronic: via Benedetta 2 (biggest disco, international, karaoke, average age: 24)
  • The Lions Fontain: Borgo degli Albizi 34r (Irish pub)
  • Twice: via Giuseppe Verdi 57r (elegant bar, dance floor opens at 12pm, disco, open daily)
  • YAB: via Sassetti 5r (disco, average age: 27)


Tourist point in the Florence city center:

  • via Cavour 1r; 8:15am - 7:15pm; 055-290-832
  • piazza Stazione; 8:30am - 7:15pm; 055-212-245
  • via Manzoni; Mon - Sat: 9:00am - 5:00pm; Sun: 9:00am - 2:00pm; 055-234-0444


It is well worth getting the “Amici degli Uffizi” card (Friends of the Uffizi card). You get into all the major museums, such as Galleria degli Uffizi (entrance n. “2”), Galleria dell’Accademia, Palazzo Pitti, Giardino di Boboli, Museo Nazionale del Bargello and many more, without standing in line, and you can go back as many times as you like.
Buy “Amici degli Uffizi” card in the office of the Uffizi Museum next to the main entrance:

  • Individual, valid for one adult: 60 Euro
  • Young people, up to 26 years of age: 40 Euro

If you want to avoid queues, you can book tickets on: orcall +39-055-294-883 or go to the office in Chiesa di Orsanmichele in via Calzaiuoli.

School organizes many activities for free lessons time, between them: museums visits and city tours. In this case visits will have a special discount.


  • Boboli Garden: piazza Pitti 1 (open Tue to Sun: 9am to 4.30pm (winter); in summer till 6.30pm)
  • Botanic Garden: via p. A. Micheli 3 (open on Mon, Wed, Fri, Sat from 9am to 12am, entry is free)
  • Rose Garden: via Giuseppe Poggi (9am to 12am, entry is free)
  • Bardini Garden: costa San Giorgio 6 (
  • Parco delle Cascine: via delle Cascine 1 (always open, entry free)

BOX OFFICE (tickets for concerts, opera and theaters)

Via delle Vecchie Carceri 1: Mon - Fri 9:30am - 7pm, Sat till 2pm; 055-210-804;

For Operas and Classical concerts you can visit the website:



  • IBS: via de' Cerretani 16/R
  • Feltrinelli: via de' Cerretani 30r / via Cavour 12r (foreign language books)


  • Lo Zingarelli, Zanichelli
  • Pons-Klett-Zanichelli


  • The Food Lover's Guide  to Florence, di Emily Wise Miller
  • Time-out-Florence & the best of Tuscany, scritto da esperti locali
  • The Rough Guide to Florence & the best of Tuscany
  • Florence & Tuscany 2010, di Rick Steves


  • Astra 2: piazza Beccaria
  • Odeon: via de' Sassetti 1
  • Fulgor: via Maso Finiguerra 22r

All the cinemas in Florence have a special discount on Wednesdays.

Have a look at the library near our school, Biblioteca delle Oblate (via dell’Oriuolo 26). You can borrow books, CD’s and movies for free (ask at the front desk):


  • Segway Firenze: via dei Cimatori 9r; 055-239-8855 (open Mon-Sat 9am - 6pm)
  • Florence by bike: via San Zanobi 120r; 055-488-992 (open daily 9am - 7:30pm daily open 9am - 7:30pm)

To reserve online a Segway tour visit:

Never give your address to the salesman. We suggest that you buy a good lock, in Florence bicycles often get stolen. If you want to buy a cheap bicycle, have a look on the Internet (eBay) or call: Walter Zecchino: via Aretina 135r; 339-4981-88 (Bus Nr. 14, fermata: Aretina 03)

IThe Florence municipal bike rental service is called “Mille e una bici” (A Thousand and One Bicycles). Using a bicycle to get around Florence is easy. The city has over 63 kilometers of bicycle paths and most of the city center is off-limits to cars. You can rent a bicycle from one pick up point and turn it in at another. The rental costs are as follows: 1 hour = 2 Euro; 5 hours = 5 Euro; one day = 10 Euro.
Pick up points are at the Central Train Station SMN, Piazza Santa Croce and via Ghiberti. More Informations on:


Check timetables and prices on:: o

  • Eurostar / Italo: fastest and most expensive trains, reservation required
  • Intercity: reservation recomended for the weekends

Train tickets can be bought at the station or at travel agencies (Biemme Viaggi, via delle Belle Donne 4) and they’re only valid if you validate them in one of the yellow boxes located at the beginning of platforms.

There are different bus companies which take you to places near Florence like Siena, Chianti, Pisa and so on. They’re not expensive and more comfortable than trains. The most important long haul buses:

  • “Sita”: via S. Caterina da Siena 17r, check on: or call: 055-47821
  • “Lazzi”: piazza della Stazione 4r, check on: or call: 055-215155



  • Benefit Club: via di S. Salvi 17r; 055-672-565 (Bus Nr. 3, stop: De Amicis)
  • Blu Fitness: via il Prato 40r; 055-238-2138 (Bus Nr. C2/C3, stop: il Prato)
  • Body's Gym: via Leonardo Bruni 11; 055-688-117 (Bus Nr. 3/31, stop: Gavinana 01)
  • Ricciardi: Borgo Pinti 75; 055-247-8444
  • Swan: via dei Pepi 28r; 055-240-802


  • Nannini-Bellariva: Lungarno Aldo Moro 6 (Bus Nr. 14; stop: Aretina 01)
  • Costoli: viale Paoli, Campo di Marte (Bus Nr.10, stop: Piscina Costoli 01)
  • Le Pavoniere: viale della Catena (Parco delle Cascine) (Bus Nr. 17C, stop: Le Cascine)


It is recommended to dress respectfully when visiting churches (knees and shoulders must be covered).


  • San Lorenzo: 055-216-634
  • San Marco: 055-287-628
  • Santa Maria del Fiore (Duomo): 055-294-514
  • Santa Maria Novella: 055-230-2903
  • Santa Croce: 055-244-619
  • Santo Spirito: 055-287-043


  • St. James (American Church): via B. Rucellai 9; 055-294-417
  • Jewish Community: via L. C. Farini 4; 055-245-252
  • Muslim Community: Borgo Allegri 64; 055-263-9639
  • Russian Orthodox Church: via Leone X 8; 055-490-148
  • Evangelical Lutheran Church: via de' Bardi 2; 055-539-7035
  • Istituto Italiano Buddista Soka Gakkai, Via di Bellagio, 2 ; 055 426971


Study Italian in Florence - Ask for information



Officially authorized by the Italian Ministry of Education.
Address: Via Bufalini 3  IT - 50122, Florence, Italy
Telephone: (+39) 055-261.181 - Fax: (+39) 055-294.820
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Passionate about art, fashion or design?

The Leonardo da Vinci schools offer the possibility to study Italian language and, at the same time, discover Italian traditions, such as art, fashion and design. In particular, our schools in Florence and Milan have studied a special offer. For more information visit: art courses in Italy.

Looking for more information?

The school provides you with all the necessary information online, but upon request we can send you our brochure. Please fill in our request information form and prepare your study travel to learn Italian language in Italy.

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The school provides for all the necessary information online but may also, on request, answer to all your demands and send you a brochure.

  • Information center: +39 055 290305

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