One of the very first things I did as soon as arrived in Florence was find a gelato shop (fun fact: Florence is the birthplace of gelato). But where do I even begin? There is literally a gelato shop around every corner and new shops pop up all the time. On the plus side, this means that you can try a new gelato shop and flavors every single day. If you want to have it for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, I certainly will not judge you. In fact, if you're not eating at least two scoops a day, are you even doing Italy right??
I've definitely visited my fair share of gelaterias and like pizza, I don't believe you can have bad gelato because even if it's not the best, it's still pretty good. But I do have a couple favorites, so here are my picks for must-try gelaterias in Florence:
This was my very first gelato stop, and I’m so glad it was. It is right by the duomo, and it’s usually pretty busy with a line out the door from the few times I’ve walked past it. Fortunately, it wasn’t too crowded on the day I went. As soon as you walk in, the smell of fresh waffle cones hits you in the face. It’s absolutely intoxicating. The flavors I got during my visit were red wine sorbet and chocolate, and the pairing was absolutely perfect. I also tried the almond flavor my friend got, and it was so deliciously rich. The gelato at Edoardo was also the lightest compared to the others. Plus, it’s organic!
Piazza del Duomo, 45R, Firenze, Italy
2. La Carraia
Just across Ponte alla Carraia is the very popular La Carraia gelato shop. I heard a small cone used to be 1 euro, but it has since gone up to 1.90 euro. Still worth the price though as portions are very generous. I've visited this place more times than I care to admit, and you can't go wrong with any of the flavors. Some of my favorites were the nutella, coconut, pineapple, and cookies. If you don't want to hike all the way across the bridge, there's a smaller location (La Carraia 2) near Piazza Santa Croce.
Piazza Nazario Sauro, 25-red, Firenze, Italy
Via de' Benci, 24/r, Firenze, Italy
3. Gelateria Santa Trinita
After visiting La Carraia, you might as well visit Santa Trinita (if you can handle all the gelato), which is a 3 minute walk down the block. I tried the sesame flavor here, and it reminded me of the sesame ice cream I once had in Hong Kong. So good!
Piazza Frescobaldi, 11/12 R, Firenze, Italy
4. Gelateria dei Neri
I found this place on my walk to Piazzale Michelangelo. This place had a ton of flavor options, which only makes it so much harder to decide what to get! However, the green tea flavor is one of my all time favorites so far. The raspberry, rose, and passion fruit flavor are also really good. If you’re in this area, I recommend stopping by All’Antico Vinaio for a panino, just down the street, and then pop in here for dessert.
Via dei Neri, 9/11, Firenze, Italy
I found out about Vivoli after reading an article by Conde Nast Traveler on “Italy’s Best Gelato”. It is supposedly the oldest gelateria in Florence, so of course I had to check it out. While the portions are smaller, prices are a bit higher, and they don’t offer cones, Vivoli is still worth trying. The flavors I got during my visit were rice and mango. The rice had little bits of rice with a coconut-y flavor, and the mango beats the one I got from La Carraia, which is really saying something!
Via dell’Isola delle Stinche, 7/r, Firenze, Italy
6. Don Nino
Don Nino has a prime spot right by the Duomo and is always busy with tourists and study abroad students. Along with gelato, they also specialize in delicious pastries. It's a really cute cafe just to hang out with friends or to take a break from crowd around the Duomo. Also, if you're looking for the perfect @foodintheair gelato pic, this is the spot!
Piazza del Duomo, 11, Firenze, Italy
7. La Strega Nocciola
This smaller gelato shop is right around the corner of Don Nino, and it has some of the best flavors. The selection is smaller compared to the others, but the one they do have are amazing. I could not get enough of the lavender flavor, which goes really well with the spicy chocolate one.
Via Ricasoli, 16r, Firenze, Italy
*Updated from original post on Violets for Vivien