The Accademia Gallery, where today stands Michelangelo's David, was born in 1784 as an exhibition space for the studies of the students of Fine Arts and today is the most visited museum in the city, after the Uffizi Gallery.
The endless queues at the entrance are guaranteed, so it is advisable to book a fast-track ticket in advance or even hire a guided tour to enrich your visit.
Guided tour of the Galleria dell'Accademia with full explanations by an expert guide
Discover the most important details of the works housed in the Accademia Gallery with a specialized guide in English.
The culture and art you will find in Florence is unparalleled, and it would be a shame to leave the Accademia without understanding what you see. For a more complete visit, this guided tour of the Accademia is a great option. A professional guide will help you learn in depth and in English all the history behind the 'David' and the rest of the sculptures and paintings in this museum, which you can continue exploring on your own after the tour.
This tour includes fast-track entry to the museum so you won't have to wait in line at the entrance.
Why this tour: Guided tours are a must in this city and in the case of the Accademia Gallery, it is especially recommended to do the tour accompanied by an expert.
Recommended if... you want to visit the Galleria dell'Accademia with a guided tour in English at the best price.
Tickets for the Galleria dell'Accademia in Florence
If what you want is to visit the original David (when you see it you will realize that its perfection goes far beyond that of its replicas), the best option is to visit the Accademia Gallery on your own and at your own pace, but without having to wait in long lines of tourists waiting at the entrance, I recommend you to buy this ticket in advance and online. You can buy tickets on their website.
Florence is home to three statues of David, something that surprises and may even lead to some confusion to some tourists. Two of them are replicas of the original work, one in marble from 1910, which you will find in Piazza della Signoria, and another in the Piazzale Michelangelo, from 1865 and built in tribute to Michelangelo himself.
You will not join any guided tour, but you will have time to walk through the gallery at your own pace and stop to look at the works of your choice for as long as you need.
Why this option: being the most economical and not including any guided tour, it will allow you more flexibility in organizing your visit.
Recommended if... you want to visit the Accademia Gallery at the best price and at your own pace.
Combined ticket to the Galleria dell'Accademia and the Uffizzi Galleries
Florence is an open-air museum. If you are thinking of hiring a guided tour to a museum, a good way to save money is to add a guided tour of the city. This tour is the most recommended by the thousands of travelers who have done it. It is very complete and the guide makes a very enjoyable visit of the most relevant things to see not only in the galleries of the Accademia and the Ufizzi but also in the city itself.
You will start with a one-hour walk with the guide through the highlights of the historic center: this tour will serve to put in context the history of the city and why it hosted for decades the best artists in the world. Then you will enter the Accademia Gallery to visit the famous David by Michelangelo and the other spectacular works housed in this gallery.
You will have a couple of hours to have lunch and stroll around at your leisure or simply relax with a good Italian coffee on a terrace. Finally, you will go to the Uffizi Gallery to visit it with your guide. In short, a very complete visit of the highlights of the city at a very reasonable price.
Why this option: this tour includes the highlights of Florence with an expert guide in English at the best price you can find.
Recommended if... you want to save money by buying a pack that includes the tour of the city and the two most important museums with an expert guide.
Where to buy the ticket to the Accademia Gallery?
There are two options: online in advance or at the box office. Booking at the box office is cheaper, but it is usually sold out as it is one of the most visited museums in the world. The online ticket in advance is sold on many websites, I leave you the official one here.
How much does it cost to enter the Accademia Gallery?
The adult ticket purchased at the box office costs about 16 €. Tickets for young people between 18 and 25 years old cost 6 €. Children are free.
Unfortunately, it is practically impossible to buy a ticket at the box office and the most common price is the advance ticket price.
Is there a discounted ticket?
Young people between the ages of 18 and 25 pay less than half the adult ticket price. Seniors and other groups are free.
Is it free to visit the Accademia Gallery?
These are the groups that get in for free:
- Children and teenagers under 18 years of age
- EU citizens with a disability and a family member or companion
- Groups of students from EU countries, accompanied by their teachers
- Tour guides from the EU
- Persons with study or research certification from Italian and foreign schools or universities, academies and research and cultural institutes
Tips for your visit
Opening hours of the Accademia Gallery
The Galleria dell'Accademia is open from Tuesday to Sunday and closed on Mondays. Its regular opening hours are from 8:15 am to 6:50 pm.
On Saturdays it is mandatory to reserve admission in advance.
In addition to Mondays, it is closed on January 1 and December 25.
The ticket office closes 30 minutes before closing time.
How to get to the Galleria dell'Accademia
The Galleria dell'Accademia in Florence is located in Via Ricasoli, 58-60, in the historic center of the city and very close to Piazza del Duomo. You can reach it on foot from any point in the center, on board the tourist bus or on lines 1 and 17 of the city bus.
Is a visit to the Galleria dell'Accademia in Florence worthwhile?
Yes, the Accademia Gallery in Florence contains the most important sculpture in the world: Michelangelo's "David". It is a masterpiece that justifies a trip to Florence.
The 'David' is the quintessential Renaissance work and is arguably the most recognized sculpture in the history of art. The imposing and courageous attitude of a magnificent young man at the height of his life with an absolute faith in God before his confrontation with Goliath, symbolized the power of the Republic of Florence at its peak, during the 16th century.
Michelangelo spent up to 3 years carving his 'David' from a huge block of the prized Carrara marble, from 1501 to 1504, when he was only 20 years old and in the workshops of the Opera del Duomo.
This overwhelming sculpture was conceived to be placed, together with other sculptures representing the Old Testament, in an external buttress of the apse of the Cathedral of Florence, but finally it was moved to another exceptional place at the gates of the Ponte Vecchio, in Piazza della Signoria. Since 1873 and for conservation reasons the 'David' was kept inside the Galleria dell'Accademia.
- Other sculptures by Michelangelo, these unfinished, such as the 'Prigioni' and 'San Matteo'.
- A large display of religious painting with works by other great Renaissance masters such as Fra Filippo Lippi, Botticelli and Andrea Orcagna.
- An exhibition of antique musical instruments.
What will I see in the Uffizi Gallery?
Begun by Giorgio Vasari in 1560 under the instruction of Duke Cosimo I de Medici, this palace and museum contains one of the most important and oldest art collections in the world, with two million visitors a year, the most visited in all of Italy.
Its name, Gallery of the Offices, is due to the fact that it was designed to replace the Palazzo Vecchio as the seat of the offices of the Florentine magistracies, being used as a residence and custodian of the art pieces collected for decades by the Medici family, the most powerful and influential dynasty of the Renaissance in Florence, which stood out for its work as patrons of its most important scientists and artists.
- Botticelli's 'Spring' and 'The Birth of Venus',
- Leonardo da Vinci's 'The Annunciation' and 'Adoration of the Magi'.
- 'The Virgin of the Goldfinch' by Raphael,
- Titian's 'The Venus of Urbino'.
- Paintings by Michelangelo and Giotto, among others.
- Greek and Roman statues, prints and drawings.
Other interesting visits in Florence
In addition to the Accademia Gallery, Florence boasts much more artistic heritage. To know the best ways to discover it, don't miss these other articles on. Tours and Daytrips from Florence, Florence Duomo Tickets and Tours: how to buy, prices and schedules o Uffizi Gallery Tickets and Tours in Florence: how to buy, prices and schedules.
Frequently asked questions
Is the Accademia Gallery free on Sundays?
Yes and no. The Accademia Gallery is only free on the first Sunday of every month. And actually, this is the worst time to visit the gallery, especially during the summer, as the horde of visitors make exploring the museum a chaotic and unpleasant experience.
Why is the Accademia Gallery so famous?
The Accademia Gallery is famous for housing many of Michelangelo's sculptures, including the famous statue of David. It is also known for the Hall of the Colossus, and the Hall of the Prisoners, both of which house some of the most dramatic and evocative statues in Italy.
What is the best time of day to visit the Accademia Gallery?
Regardless of the time, you are more than likely to encounter a queue, however you can avoid the large crowds if you visit early in the morning or from 17:00 onwards, by which time the large crowds have thinned out.