18th February: Maria Luisa de’ Medici festival in Florence

On 18th February, the city of Florence pays homage to a great woman, the last member of the Medici dynasty in the anniversary of her death.

Maria Luisa de’ Medici in 1737 signed the so-called “patto di famiglia” (family’s pact), offering her family’s immense patrimony to the city of Florence. This means that all the paintings, sculptures and collections are open to the public and you can see them.

This celebration is devoted to art, that is why some of the museums in the city can be visited for free on February 18th. Here there is the list:

Palazzo Vecchio Museum, located in Piazza Signoria. Opening hours: 9.00 am – 7.00 pm
Brancacci Chapel, located in Piazza del Carmine 14. Opening hours: 10.00 am – 5.00 pm
Stefano Bardini Museum, located in Via dei Renai 37. Opening hours: 11.00 am – 5.00 pm
Fondazione Salvatore Romano, located in Piazza Santo Spirito 29. Opening hours: 10.00 am – 4.00 pm
The Santa Maria Novella Museum, which is the museum in the cloister right next to the church. Opening hours: 10.00 am – 4.00 pm.

Even the Opificio delle Pietre Dure, which is known for its expertise in art work, offers free guided visits. You can visit this small museum in the morning from 9.30 to 11.15 am.

Then have a walk through the center, since there will be a parade in historical costume. A must see event that will start at the Palagio dei Capitani di Parte Guelfa and it will end at the Medici Chapels, to pay a tribute to the Maria Luisa’s monument.

Since you are there, take also the chance to visit the Medici Chapels: it is a special opening from 2.00 to 7.00 pm and you can also enjoy the classical music concert at the Chapel of Princes, which is inside the Chapels, at 5.00 pm.