First Day in Florence – Sunday, May 14, 2017
Our hosts at Villa Eva were gracious enough to provide us with an earlier breakfast time than normal. Our group gathered in the Villa Eva cafe at 6:30 a.m. to prepare to make our way to Marina Grande to wait for the 9:25 a.m. ferry back to Naples.
We arrived at Marina Grande close to 8:30 a.m., and waited on the dock for our ferry. We boarded closer to 9 a.m., and split off to the upper and lower decks to nap and snap photos. The ferry ride lasted for an hour, and we arrived to our charter bus waiting at the dock in Naples. Once we boarded the bus, we rode half of the scheduled three hours before stopping at a Sarni for food. We arrived in Scandicci at an above ground train stop to ride to the Florence train station.
Once we arrived in Florence, we had a five-minute walk to our hotel, Ostello Archi Rossi. We received our room assignments, and separated to go freshen up. We met up after 30 minutes, and Professor Caserta and Dr. Ryan led us on a walk up to the Florence shopping square. The walk ended at the Ponte Vecchio that stretches across the Arno River.
After our walk, we split for dinner, and went back to the hotel to rest. We had to be up early the next day for our trip to the Mangicane vineyard in Tuscany for the last wine tasting on the trip.