Top things to do

Top Choice Tuscan in Santa Croce

Il Teatro del Sale

Florentine chef Fabio Picchi is one of Florence's living treasures who steals the Sant' Ambrogio show with this eccentric, good-value, members-only club (everyone welcome, membership €7) inside an old theatre. He co…
Top Choice Church in Santa Croce

Basilica di Santa Croce

The austere interior of this Franciscan basilica is a shock after the magnificent neo-Gothic facade enlivened by varying shades of coloured marble. Most visitors come to see the tombs of Michelangelo, Galileo and Gh…
Top Choice Museum in Santa Croce

Museo del Bargello

It was behind the stark walls of Palazzo del Bargello, Florence's earliest public building redecorated in neo-Gothic style in 1845, that the podestà (governing magistrate) meted out justice from the 13th century unt…
Top Choice Cafe in Santa Croce

Ditta Artigianale

With industrial decor and welcoming laid-back vibe, this ingenious coffee roastery and gin bar is a perfect place to hang at any time of day. The creation of three-times Italian barista champion Francesco Sanapo, it…
Top Choice Cosmetics in Santa Croce

Aquaflor

This elegant Santa Croce perfumery in a vaulted 15th-century palazzo exudes romance and exoticism. Artisan scents are crafted here with tremendous care and precision by master perfumer Sileno Cheloni, who works with…
Top Choice Sandwiches in Santa Croce

Semel

Florentines swear by this pocket-sized sandwich bar opposite Mercato di Sant'Ambrogio. There is no fixed menu, rather an impossible-to-decide choice of six gourmet combos, crafted with love by passionate owner and p…
Top Choice Osteria in Santa Croce

All'Antico Vinaio

The crowd spills out the door of this noisy Florentine thoroughbred. Push your way to the tables at the back to taste cheese and salami in situ (reservations recommended). Or join the queue at the deli counter for a…
Vegetarian in Santa Croce

Brac

This hipster cafe-bookshop – a hybrid dining-aperitivi address – cooks up inventive, home-style and strictly vegetarian and/or vegan cuisine. Its decor is recycled vintage with the occasional kid's drawing thrown in…
Bar in Santa Croce

Le Murate Caffè Letterario

This artsy cafe-bar in Florence's former jail is where literati meet to talk, create and perform over coffee, drinks and light meals. The literary cafe hosts everything from readings and interviews with authors – Fl…
Seafood in Santa Croce

Vivo

Raw fish, shellfish, oysters and other fishy dishes – all caught in waters around Italy by the Manno family's 30-strong fleet of fishing boats – are cooked up by chef Anna Maria at this fish restaurant, inside a han…