The historic Boboli Gardens are a must-visit for anyone traveling to Florence. This lavish garden is spread out around 45,000 square metres (11 acres) and acts as a backyard for the iconic Pitti Palace. Its lush landscape holds centuries of history teeming with refreshing greenery, iconic statues, fountains and other structures.
The Boboli Gardens, despite its beauty and allure, is one of Florence’s lesser-known offerings, but it is located within a 2 km radius of the city’s well-known landmarks such as the Uffizi Gallery and the Galleria dell' Accademia. The Florence Duomo, an iconic cathedral set in the heart of the city centre, is just a 10-minute walk away from the Gardens!
Why Visit The Boboli Gardens?
- Largest open-air museum in Florence – With several old-fashioned buildings turned into museums and an array of historic statues and fountains – it is the largest open-air museum in Florence.
- Spectacular view of the Florence Duomo – The Florence Duomo is a 13th-century cathedral, known for its spectacular dome. The Boboli Gardens grant a mesmerizing view of the Duomo from a high angle, making it a favourite spot for tourists and explorers alike.
- Historical importance – The Boboli Gardens are steeped in centuries of history, having been developed over four centuries by reigning monarchs, architects, sculptors and artists.
- Breathtaking Green Architecture – Be it the branch archways along the Viale dei Cipressi (Cypress Lane) or the Upper Botanical Garden (Botanica Superiore), the Boboli Gardens takes the concept of green architecture a notch higher. The Ganymede Garden is also a must-see, with its mesmerizing fountain and a view to match.
- Central Location – These gardens are a part of Florence’s Historic Centre, which is listed as one of UNESCO’s World Heritage Sites. It is within walking distance from both the Piazza de' Pitti and the Piazza del Duomo – two of the most visited tourist spots in Italy.
- Florence’s best hike – If you love hiking, then the Boboli Gardens are the best place for an urban hike.. The 11-acre masterpiece is perfect for explorers to stroll amidst lush greenery, steep hills and well-maintained gardens.
- Proximity to Palazzo Pitti – The Boboli Gardens act as a backyard to the famous Palazzo Pitti and depending on the ticket you purchase, one can explore both the Gardens and the Palace at a discounted combo cost.
Boboli Gardens Tickets
Boboli Gardens Skip The Line Entrance Tickets
Skip the lines and gain entry to the elegant Boboli Gardens at Uffizi for a chance to get away from the city and appreciate nature. Stroll through the sculpture park and catch a glimpse of the best of Renaissance landscaping for a wonderful day out in Florence.
- Gain skip-the-line access to the 111-acre Boboli Gardens, and go for a stroll through this beautifully arranged park.
- See the many attractions in and around the park, such as the 6-meter high obelisk from the time of Ramses II, the stunning grottoes, and the regal Fountain of Neptune.
- Enjoy access to the Porcelain Museum and the Bardini Garden, which will round out your visit to the Gardens nicely.
Boboli Gardens History Under A Minute
The Boboli Gardens were built by Cosimo I de' Medici, the second Duke of Florence and the first Grand Duke of Tuscany in the mid-16th century. The Garden gets its name from a variation of the land’s former owners – the Bogoli family.
The Boboli Gardens were among the first formal 16th-century Italian gardens and inspired many European establishments. The Gardens, located directly behind the Pitti Palace, features a host of mesmerizing sights including extraordinary statues and fountains and an awe-inspiring amphitheatre.
The sculptures, fountains and architectural wonders are breathtaking works of art by talented artists and sculptors like Niccolo Tribolo, Bartolomeo Ammannati, Giorgia Vassari, Bernardo Buontalenti and Giulio Parigi. These artists, commissioned by the Medici family, enriched the Gardens throughout the 17th, 18th and 19th centuries. It was opened to the public in 1766.
Boboli Gardens Highlights - What You Cannot Miss
The Fountain of Bacchus
This fountain was designed by Valerio Cioli in 1560. It depicts a court dwarf, Braccio di Bartolo, naked and drunk while sitting atop a turtle representing Bacchus – the Roman God of wine.
The Giant Cracked Face Statue
Hosted in the centre of the Boboli Gardens is the Tindaro Screpolato. Its sculptor,Igor Mitoraj, set out to express his yearning desire for a world that remains mysterious yet perfect through the statue.
Grotta Di Buontalenti
An unmissable part of the Boboli Gardens is the Grotta Di Buontalenti – a cultural masterpiece named after its main architect Bernardo Buontalenti.
An unmistakable sight at the Boboli Gardens is the pastel green building topped off by a dome. Atop the Kaffehaus, visitors can admire the view of the entirety of the Gardens.
This basin hosts the Fountain of the Ocean with ornate fountains around the basin and a statue of Perseus emerging on a horse from under the water.
An old quarry turned into an innovative green amphitheatre, this space was used to host cultural festivals in the past. The Amphitheatre’s main features have now been restored to its former glory to give visitors a feel of its original form.
A short walk from the Boboli Gardens, the Bardini Gardens is a sprawling, yet underrated garden filled with gorgeous flowers, trees and architecture.
Fontana Di Nettuno
Climbing up Boboli Hill, visitors are graced with the Fountain of Neptune, a work by Stoldo Lorenzi. The masterful fountain features the God of the Sea wielding his trident.
The largest fortress in Florence, the Forte Belvedere stands on the highest hill of the Boboli Gardens. It offers visitors a mesmerizing view of Florence along with an intriguing look into Renaissance architecture.
The Viottolone (Grand Boulevard) is a long road lined by cypresses, old oak trees and other ancient trees. It is the newest part of the garden, having been added in 1600, and is a relaxing place to stroll while admiring nature.
The Fountain Of The Ocean By Giambologna
A large pond with an island in the middle hosts the Fountain of The Ocean with a statue of Neptune as its centrepiece surrounded by three deities to represent the Nile, Ganges and the Euphrates.
Known as Spiders Lane, this long pathway is covered by archways made of branches the perfect spot for a leisurely stroll.
Know Before Your Visit
The Boboli Gardens are open seven days of the week throughout the year except for January 1, December 25 and the first and last Monday of each month.
The Boboli Gardens hours open at 8:15 AM but has different closing times based on the season:
- 4:30 PM in November, December, January and February
- 5.30 PM in March and October (without Daylight Saving Time)
- 6.30 PM in April, May, September, March and October (with Daylight Saving Time)
- 7.30 PM in June, July, August
The Gardens may experience temporary closures in the event of emergencies. Admission to the Uffizi Gallery, Boboli Gardens and the Pitti Palace are free on special occasions throughout the year.
Directions To Boboli Gardens
How to reach Boboli Gardens via :
- Car – Visitors travelling through Florence by car can use the city’s many parking spaces, located close to popular tourist attractions. The same applies to the Boboli Gardens, although there are barely any free parking spaces so prepare to pay up. Visitors can also hire taxis but these can be quite expensive.
- Bus – There are scheduled buses from several stations across Florence which take you directly to the Boboli Gardens. Direct buses are available from Oltrande area , Firenze Santa Maria Novella Station and Piazzale Michelangelo. Bus travel is relatively cheap and convenient.
- Train – The closest train station to the Boboli Gardens is the Santa Maria Novella Station,a 15-minute walk away from the Gardens. The station serves most major train lines so visitors can take trains from Rome or other parts of Italy.
- Walk – Exploring Florence by foot is an adventure by itself. Visitors can stroll through the city’s many stunning offerings, most of which are walking distance from each other.
Tips for Your Visit
- We recommend exploring the gardens and surrounding areas by foot so you can take your time to marvel at the extraordinary Renaissance and Roman architecture.
- Visitors should ideally reserve at least five to six hours if they want to thoroughly explore everything the Garden has to offer.
- Do not miss the chance to visit the Porcelain Museum and the Kaffehaus during your visit to the Gardens.
- The Bardini Gardens, next door to the Boboli Gardens, are equally stunning for nature lovers.
- If you visit the Boboli Gardens in the summer, we recommend doing so in the early morning before the afternoon hits.
- Those eager to avoid lines should grab Skip the Line access tickets online. To explore Boboli and its surrounding areas thoroughly, visitors are advised to buy the Passepartout 3 Days pass for 18€ which allows them entry into the Gardens, the Pitti Palace and the Uffizi Gallery for 3 consecutive days.
- Italian residents and those who frequent Florence, either solo or with their families, can buy an annual pass. This pass gives them unlimited priority admission into the Gardens, Uffizi Gallery and Palazzo Pitti. A single annual pass costs € 70 while the family pass, which admits 2 adults and unlimited children, is available for € 100.
- While photography and filming for private use are allowed, shooting for professional use or publication requires special permission.
- Lastly, visitors should keep in mind that although it is a vast green area, the Boboli Gardens are a historical site. Activities that damage the area and its artefacts will result in lead to strict action against the violators.
How long does it take to visit the Gardens and the Palace?
Depending on what you’d like to see and the pace at which you like to explore, the Gardens could take 3-4 hours to traverse. Palazzo Pitti takes roughly about 2 hours for a sedate visit. Palace could take around 2 hours. It is recommended to schedule around half a day to explore both the Boboli Gardens and Palazzo Pitti thoroughly.
When is the best time to visit the Boboli Gardens?
Since the Boboli Gardens are not predominantly made up of flowers but rather shrubs and other greenery, they are stunning year round. . Some visitors, however, do say that September, the month of spring is the best time to visit the Boboli Gardens.
Can I buy tickets on-site?
Entrance tickets for the Boboli Gardens can be bought on-site. There may be long lines during special occasions or popular holidays.
Can I book tickets online?
Yes. You can book tickets online at the Uffizi’s official website - https://www.uffizi.it/en/tickets.
Are the gardens still lush in the winter months?
There is no need to worry about a bare landscape in the winter months. Most of the greenery in the area is lush year-round and a great sight for visitors.
Can I bring pets into the Gardens?
There are no pets allowed inside the Gardens. However, certified guide dogs can accompany their owners.
Can I have a picnic inside the Gardens?
Since the Gardens are a historical site, visitors are not allowed to have picnics. While a snack or two while walking around is permissible, the guards on patrol do not allow for long picnics to preserve the integrity of the area.
Is there a combo ticket to see the Boboli Gardens and the Pitti Palace?
You can buy a combo ticket that gives access to the Uffizi Gallery, Boboli Gardens and the Palazzo Pitti for € 18. Travellers can also buy the Firenze Card, which provides priority access to the major museums in Florence for 3 days at the price of € 85.
Is the Boboli Gardens accessible for those with reduced mobility?
Persons with disabilities are allowed by laws in Florence to gain priority free entry to all state museums, including the Boboli Gardens, along with a certified companion. Those with reduced mobility are provided wheelchairs free of charge. Guide dogs are also allowed.
Entry to the Gardens for individuals with disabilities or restricted mobility is only allowed with a companion as there are several slopes to navigate and a majority of the pathways are made up of stones and gravel.
Are there guided tours of the Boboli Gardens?
There are no official guided tours of the Gardens but most of the travel and tourism companies offer packages for different areas at different prices. Visitors are advised to do a thorough research while picking a tour package.