Not only is the Uffizi Gallery museum Florence’s most significant museum, it is also its most popular. Work on the Uffizi Palace, brainchild of Giorgio Vasari, began in 1560 under orders from Cosimo de’ Medici. Although the original purpose of the building was a central location for offices of administration, a number of rooms on the third floor were used to store the Medicis’ most prized artworks. These were added to over time by other members of the clan. 200 years later, in 1737, Anna Maria Luisa, the last of the Medicis, left the masterpieces and the palace itself to Florence in her will.
The 15th century building that houses the Museum of San Marco is a tourist attraction in itself; let alone what is inside. It originally was a Dominican convent, and later was completely renovated and extended for Cosimo the Elder de’ Medici. As a result it is completely intact, giving the visitor an insight into the layout of a convent from this period in time and what life must have been like within the walls. The cloister, as well as the bright library, together make this one of the best preserved Renaissance interiors.