I had asked Anna, our portania (door keeper), if she could have a taxi waiting for us at 4pm. Brandon was a little shocked when the taxi turned out to be a very nice Mercedes with a 'fancy driver'. We just laughed and realized that this was probably a normal taxi for the residents of our buildings.
We caught a train from Monza into Milan, where we connected with a Freccia Rosa, Italy's high speed trains. Our trip from Monza to Florence was just a bit over two hours, including connection time. It we had driven, it would have been at least 4 hours.
The Freccia Rosa reaches speeds to 300+ kph. Thats about 188mph. Pretty fast. The trains are very nice and very smooth, with power and internet connections.
The video screen told us when we reached 100, 200 and 300 kph.
We arrived in Florence just after 7pm. Our hotel is located just a few blocks from the train station, an easy walk. We are staying at the Galileo Hotel. Our room is pretty basic and doesn't have a great view, but its clean and comfortable.
View from our hotel room.
After getting settled in the room, we walked down the street to Le Sorgenti Ristorante Cinese. We ate here last year when we visited Florence and it was pretty good. We are going to really miss European Chinese food.
After dinner we walked around the streets of Florence for awhile. The piazza near the Duomo was crowded with tourists and tour groups. There are a lot of teens and college age tour groups in Florence right now, probably in time with spring break. Katrina enjoyed some gelato and Brandon had a waffle before we headed back to the room for the night.
Many shop windows are decorated for Easter
Brandon tries to poke his eye with his last bite of waffle.