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Behind the Palazzo Pitti are the Boboli Gardens, one of the most beautiful and famous in all of Italy. So if you are in the mood for relaxing, strolling, or having a picnic, be sure bear these gardens in mind. Just remember, there is an entrance fee. That said, the price is quite reasonable and we assure you it is well worth the money.
The gardens are home to many and varied elements and sections, all of which possess their own particular charm. One of these is the Amphitheatre, located on the site where the stones used to build the Palazzo Pitti were extracted. The crater left by the excavation became the site of the open-air theatre where the first operas in history were represented. In the centre you will also find a granite basin from the Baths of Caracalla, in Rome, and an obelisk brought from Luxor.
On the left side of the gardens is the Kaffehaus, a Rococo-style pavilion built in 1776 and decorated with frescoes. During the summer months a cafe is installed here where visitors can enjoy a relaxing drink while admiring the wonderful views of the city. Just behind the pavilion is the Forte di Belvedere, a beautiful fort built in the 16th century by Fernando I. Its mission was to defend the city and the Palazzo Pitti, so it offers incredible views of the city of Florence.
Nearby you will also find the Porcelain Museum, which is accessed through a small garden populated with rose bushes and low hedges. The museum houses an exhibition of porcelain objects from the 18th and 19th centuries. Visitors leaving here will come onto Viottolone, a long avenue laid down in 1637 and lined with classical statues and cypress trees. Cypresses are one of the species most commonly used in Italian Gardens.
Another wonderful spot close by is the Isolotto, located at the end of the avenue. This small garden is surrounded by a green water moat that is home to families of swans. The gardens also include a number of statues of dancing peasants, many of which appear to be sheltering under hedges. In the centre of the garden visitors will also find the "Fountain of the Ocean", by Giambologna.
Located at the other end of these extensive gardens is another obligatory visit, La Grotta Grande, created by Buontalenti between 1583 and 1588. The elaborate exterior walls of the cave feature four copies of the Michelangelo "Slave" sculptures. Visitors to the interior will doubtless be surprised by the multitude of stalactites and fantastical woodland creatures.
Don't you think all the elements we have mentioned here are reason enough to visit these gardens?
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