Palazzo Vecchio, which means Old Palace, is the town hall of Florence and it stands in Piazza della Signoria. It’s a cross between a castle and palace with turrets and battlements on the outside and impressive painted palatial rooms on the inside. It was originally constructed as the home of the ruling Medici dynasty. Although there is a museum here, it’s the building itself you will fall in love with.
Without doubt, this is Pisa’s most famous building and it’s well worth a visit. The tower was built to house the bells for the lovely cathedral and construction began in 1173. Almost immediately it began to lean – in fact the builders were only on the third floor when they started to notice something was wrong. The leaning became so bad in the last 20 years that the tower had quite a few years of closure whilst it was made safe.
It’s another icon of Rome and one of the most impressive ancient structures you’re ever likely to see. Sadly, part of the outer walls fell down in an earthquake, but there’s still plenty left to get a feel for what the Colosseum would have been like in the days of the Gladiators.
Dating back to the first century AD, this former Roman temple is probably the oldest still used building you’ll ever have been in. It’s certainly the best preserved Roman building in Rome, partly because it was converted into a church by a Pope in around 609AD. Outside, the building shows its age with a huge stone canopy and ancient brickwork, but inside you get the full view of the magnificent dome.