Florence From the River

A different way to see the city.

The picturesque Arno River swoops its way into Florence from the sky-high Apennines. After the Tiber, it’s the most important river in central Italy, not to mention the birthplace of Florence’s rich history of textile production. Besides its incredible history and renowned Ponte Vecchio, the beloved waterway also offers visitors a chance to discover Florence from the water’s edge. 

Whether crossing it on a boat or a raft, paddling through it on a bike or strolling alongside it on your own two feet, embracing the Arno is always a unique experience!

Biking along the Arno

If you’re looking for a more active day in Florence, there’s a bike path made for you. Stretching from the city center to Cascine Park and the town of Signa, you can spend your day following one of the many bike paths bordering the river. Choose to venture the paths on your own terms or sign up for a guided tour in your language of choice. 

Embrace the ancient traditions

Float down the Arno in 19th-century flat-bottomed boats called “barchetti” once used to inspect the river floor for the construction of buildings, bridges and towers. The sailors, called “renaioli,” will slowly bring you beneath the Uffizi Gallery and Ponte Vecchio, giving you a unique view of some of Florence’s most spectacular architectural masterpieces. 


If sports and tourism are your thing, you’ll kill two birds with one stone with this adventurous Arno experience. Paddleboard down the Arno and get an exclusive view of the water and city, all while keeping your body in tip-top shape. It’ll be you and the river on this unique tour, free to revel in the beauty of Florence’s singular waterway

Rafting under the Ponte Vecchio

You can also cross the Arno on a special rafting excursion, the perfect mix of sport and culture. You’ll sail with a group seated aboard a raft that will lead you through the historic center of Florence, from San Niccolò to Santa Rosa, passing under the Ponte Vecchio. During the journey, you can listen to anecdotes about the river and its centuries-long rapport with the city, as told by knowledgeable guides—and, of course, take some beautiful photos!

Strolling and jogging

The Arno’s riverbanks are a treasure not to be missed. Head over to Porta San Niccolò to check out a 7 km trail that stretches all the way to Girone. Casually stroll or go for a run along the busier sections of the river to enjoy matchless views of the city, or venture to greener areas to admire contemporary art exhibits and hidden gardens

Wild gardens hidden from sight

Craving a touch of wild landscape without moving too far from the city center? Then head over to Lungarno Benvenuto Cellini to the Terzo Giardino, a garden arranged to resemble an unkempt bed of greenery but deliberately designed to evolve on its own. This green space is the perfect spot to enjoy a picnic, wander through overgrown hedges or simply enjoy a break from the bustling city. 



The Urban Rafting in Florence City Centre - Under the Ponte Ve ...

Have you ever dreamed about a rafting trip floating under the main river of Florence? Maybe not, but you can st ...

Starting from 30.16 €

Keep in touch

Keep in touch
Stay informed on what's happening in the city! Follow us on our official social channels and subscribe to the newsletter!

Subscribe to the newsletter: what are you interested in?

* By subscribing you accept our Privacy Policy, your email is safe, we will never send spam and you can unsubscribe at any time