Expert Tips


Local Hot Spots are in the Altr'Arno Neighborhood

When looking for local nightlife spots in the city, you might not always think to head over to the Altr'arno side in Florence. However, there are plenty of great bars where you find some delicious drinks and aperitivo for good prices. It also gives you a chance to meet some locals and to enjoy a night away from the city center and away from the tourist crowd.

One spot that visitors will definitely want to check out is Il Rifullo where you can find some great foods and drinks. Make sure you try all of the different menu items and look into their cocktails. It's also a great spot to try some brunch when you want a place to eat on a Sunday morning.

Flo' Lounge is one of the most popular clubs in Florence, especially during the summer months when the weather is nice and warm and there is a large crowd with plenty of people willing to dance the night away. Just make sure to dress nicely or you might not be allowed in. Also think about stopping by the nearby Spiaggia sull'Arno, where you can find a laid-back, beach-like atmosphere during the day and a fun place to party at night with spots to get some drinks and some cocktails.


An unexpected and relatively unknown spot on the other side of the river, Montecarla is one of the most comfortable and relaxed spots in the city. Great d├ęcor and delicious drinks make this a location worth spending the evening and night hours at--it's also open late, so you'll have plenty of time to relax and enjoy yourself. When you want to go bar hopping on the other side of the river, the best way to end your evening. Near the Bardini Gardens, you'll find plenty of locals here who want to party the rest of the night away--enjoy great drinks and a fun atmosphere.

Recommended for Altr'arno's Best Nightlife because: You'll find plenty of locals looking to have a good time here.

Alexa's expert tip: Show up here late--it's open all night long.

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Photo courtesy of Zoe Bar

It's always fun to hang out in an area without being bombarded by crowds of tourists, and Zoe offers a cozy spot where you can meet friends and enjoy a glass of wine. The aperitivo is delicious and worth checking out when you are planning on snacking before a large Italian dinner. It's one of the best spots to enjoy a drink before heading up to Piazzale Michelangelo and to enjoy a cool spot during the evening. Not only can you taste classic favorites, but you can also sample new kinds of aperitivo and cocktails while getting to know one of the upcoming hot spots in the city.

Recommended for Altr'arno's Best Nightlife because: You'll want to try some aperitivo and cocktails for a good price at this place near Piazzale Michelangelo.

Alexa's expert tip: Head to this spot when you want to go to Pizzale Michelango after.

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Negroni Florence Bar
Photo courtesy of Restaurants in Florence

When you are looking for some delicious aperitivo and a local atmosphere, Negroni offers a fun, vibrant spot with some great cocktails. This is a favorite spot for locals looking to enjoy some fantastic eats and drinks after checking out Piazzale Michelangelo. The menu is all in Italian, so you might need to talk to some of the staff in order to find the perfect drink for you. A buffet is also available for those who would like to snack and fill their stomachs before making the hike back up to the Piazzale for a beautiful view and a romantic evening.

Recommended for Altr'arno's Best Nightlife because: This is the place to go when you are planning on trying some cocktails.

Alexa's expert tip: Try a Negroni at Negroni--they have some great bartenders.

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There are few night clubs away from the city center, but Ickarus Club is one of the few where you know you will meet the locals. It might be smaller and less impressive than its competitors in the heart of the city, but that is the charm of this small locale. You'll find plenty of Italians willing to dance the night away and get to know you while you are at the club. There are some drinks available for those who want to enjoy a refreshment. Local DJs often stop by to provide the music for a wonderful evening out with a smaller, more intimate crowd.

Recommended for Altr'arno's Best Nightlife because: You'll find a local experience with plenty of Italians wanting to party here.

Alexa's expert tip: Think about coming here when you want to bar hop on the other side of the Arno.

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Known mostly as a coffee spot, this small caffe happens to open up at night where you get locals and expats living on the other side of the Arno. Grab a breakfast in the morning and come back for a cocktail or a glass of wine in the evening. That is one of the best parts about Italian culture--morning hotspots can also end up being your favorite evening locales. Caffe Bargioni combines just the right amount of local feel with plenty of drink options for you to sit back and relax during your evening away from the city center and on the other side of the River.

Recommended for Altr'arno's Best Nightlife because: Try some of the delicious cocktails at this spot out of the city.

Alexa's expert tip: Check out this spot during the day for a great cup of coffee.

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Dolce Vita
Photo courtesy of Virtual Tourist

Dolce Vita is a small, hidden gem with an art exhibit included and drinks and a DJ. It's a combination of great dance music, contemporary art, and a place to hang out with your friends when you want to check out an environment a little bit different than your typical club. Drink prices are about average--7 euro is the cocktail price. You can also purchase some of the art featured highlighting local artists if you happen to find yourself interested. The best part is the music available as you stroll around and meet new people--the crowd is friendly and you'll find an eclectic group here.

Recommended for Altr'arno's Best Nightlife because: This is a fun environment with plenty of drink choices and food options.

Alexa's expert tip: Check out this spot for dinner--you'll find some delicious ethnic food as well as classics.

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Out of the city center and offering a truly local experience, the James Joyce pub offers an Irish pub without the inflated prices and all the good beers. You'll find tourists and expats on a budget here happy to meet new people and share in a brew. The staff is local-inclined and friendly, and you'll find they are happy to help you with any selections that you might need to make and ay questions you may have. For the true Irish pub experience, think about heading down the River for some peace and quiet and to get away to a less typical pub than what you will find in the city.

Recommended for Altr'arno's Best Nightlife because: You'll find delicious beers and a local atmosphere at this spot away from the city center.

Alexa's expert tip: Check out happy hour for some deals--it's also the best time to meet locals.

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A little bit away from the city center is Florence's own local beach where visitors can enjoy some sand without heading to the coast. During the year, multiple events are held on this little sandy patch of land. Drinks and food are available, and you are located close to the San Niccolo area where fun, local bars abound and you can find restaurants serving favorite Tuscan dishes. They even hold events relating to soccer (or football in Italy) games or host a DJ so you can dance the night away. The beach is open mostly during the late spring and during the summer.

Recommended for Altr'arno's Best Nightlife because: This beach offers a fun, summer location by the river.

Alexa's expert tip: Bring sunscreen and enjoy a full day at the beach before enjoying the nightlife here.

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Historic Center

Offering a garden and some amazing aperitivo and wine selections, this hidden spot a ways away from the city center offers a lot to those looking for something a bit more local than your typical nightlife spot. A wonderful staff caters to those who love wine--the food is also worth considering and it is served as a more than reasonable price. A buffet is also available to those who just want to enjoy the highlights and a delicious cocktail. It's also within close walking distance of Pizzale Michelangelo, so after your time at Il Rifullo you can walk up the nearby hill for a beautiful evening and view of the sunset.

Recommended for Altr'arno's Best Nightlife because: Delicious wines and a garden make this a wonderful location in the summer.

Alexa's expert tip: Make sure to ask about the wine selections when you are unsure about what you want.

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Located on the stunning Piazzale Michelangelo, Flo' is one of the hottest spots to head to in the summer. You won't find a place in Florence better to party at, and the views are well-worth the difficult climb up to the top (you might want to think about taking a taxi if you plan to wear a pair of heels). Dressing nice is imperative--you won't be let into this club unless you have something nice to wear. You'll find that it's worth the effort. Flo' serves up some of the best aperitivo and cocktails in the city. Tourists should check and make sure that it will be open during the season when you are going to be there.

Recommended for Altr'arno's Best Nightlife because: You'll find wonderful aperitivo and great dancing at this favorite spot.

Alexa's expert tip: Make sure you dress up or you might not be let in.

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Meet Alexa Schnee

Currently residing in Florence, Alex is a travel writer and author. She is addicted to coffee, reading, and seeing new places. She has been to near fifteen different countries in Europe, all...  More About Alexa