OOOH I’m jealous too. It looks like @BotticelliLove covered some of the basics, its the perfect time of year for you to be there! It might be a bit rainy just so you know but that’s not a big deal – it’s worth not waiting in the line ups. I studied in Cortona (Tuscany) so I went to Florence quite a bit and have some friends there.
The best coffee (according to people who live there) is at Caffe Corona. Everyone says Grom for gelato but there are hole-in-the-wall spots with good stuff too.
Some wonderful restaurants are:
-L’Osteria dell’olio – amazing food!!! expensive but worth it
-bar in the Savoy restaurant (for Martinis and people watching)
-La Giostra – lovely atmosphere and amazing food
-Il Latini – eat at communal tables family style – takes you back to traditional ways, good food and great experience
If you like leather goods, the market has great prices for wallets/gloves/small items, but I would get the really good quality stuff (if you want a jacket or something) from a store – I have one from the Calzaiuoli leather factory and people pet it – soft as butter. The shopping is great everywhere, just go to the historical centre and you’ll find all the major stores.
Again, if you like art the Uffizi Gallery is a must, as well as the Galleria del’Accademia (where the David is). If you get a sunny day, the Boboli gardens are a great place to walk – this is behind/part of the Pitti Palace which is also stunning. There are often short-term art shows in the museums and public spaces so if you can wander in on one you might get lucky and find a famous piece you wouldn’t normall see… I’m kind of an art nerd so you might not be into that.
Even if you aren’t religious, I always attend mass in foreign cities, just to experience the music and atmosphere of the building. If you see an evening mass, just wander in and sit for a few minutes or go for the first half of a Sunday mass. One of the best experiences I had was sitting in on a mass in Latin by a cardinal in the Pantheon.
There are some AWESOME dance clubs. Don’t go on a weekday or there will be 14/15 year old kids. Just ask about the discoteca and someone will tell you where to go. I don’t remember the names.
You can walk up to the Piazzale Michelangelo for a great view of the city… very romantic.
You are going to have an amazing time!!!! I’m so excited for you, its a beautiful city. There are tons of little towns if you want to take the train for a day away (super easy), or even rent a car (not as easy – insane drivers, but a beautiful drive) and drive through Tuscany. Here’s a great website of places/things: http://www.tuscany.travel/tag/florence/
Where are you staying? If you have any questions, just let me know. I’ve travelled around that area a ton.