The Florence Wellness Guide

Savor health and wellbeing as you explore the Tuscan capital.

After spending decade in Italy, we’ve come to appreciate the importance of prioritizing wellness while living abroad. And though we work in the wellness industry, we also embrace the Italian way of life, cherishing la vita Italiana. We strive for a balanced approach, avoiding extremes in both wellness and indulgence. In a country where the notion of benessere permeates the culture, we prefer to interpret wellbeing in a more holistic way.

After writing our Rome Wellness Guide dedicated to our home, we set off to explore Florence and were pleasantly surprised by the abundance of green juices, yoga studios, and other wellness offerings. For a city of its size, Florence certainly packs a big wellness punch (at least by Italian standards). It might be the influx of study abroad students bringing an “American” wellness mentality to the Renaissance city, or it could simply reflect the global trend towards healthier living.

With numerous yoga studios dotting the city center and a wealth of plant-based options on restaurant menus, we were overwhelmed with how many options we found. Read on to discover some of our favorites!

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The Best Healthy Restaurants In Florence

Carduccio Firenze: Carduccio is a perfect health-oriented oasis in the heart of Florence. The emphasis on holistic well-being is evident in their dedication to quality ingredients. The menu, filled with nutrient-rich and organic options, caters to various dietary preferences. Beautiful presentation and a wide variety of smoothies, bowls and other dishes.

Floret: A chic restaurant with delightful, artisanally-crafted meals, Floret’s menu is a delightful fusion of vibrant flavors and nourishing ingredients. The founders have literally found the perfect balance between “Smartfood & La Dolce Vita.” This restaurant goes beyond merely serving delicious food — it’s a celebration of mindful eating.

Ristorante Quinoa: Established in 2014, Ristorante Quinoa proudly holds the title of Florence’s first 100% gluten-free restaurant. Located near the Duomo, this culinary gem marries the flavors of Tuscan tradition with the essence of Asian cuisine, creating a mouthwatering menu that caters to celiac guests and gluten-free alike.

Raw Vegan Firenze: Stepping into Raw Vegan Firenze will make you feel like you’ve been transported to Bali. This healthy spot takes a refreshing approach to wellness, offering a menu dedicated to raw, plant-based cuisine. We cannot say enough about their cold pressed juices and raw poke bowls which promote health and vitality through every thoughtfully crafted bite.

Melaleuca Bakery + Bistrot: Indulgence meets nourishment at this chic little cafè. Every Florentine expat’s favorite eatery, Melaleuca beautifully combines artisanal baking with a health-conscious twist. From wholesome bread to nutrient-packed bowls, every item on the menu reflects a commitment to great ingredients and mindful preparation, making it a must-visit for those seeking delicious baked goods or an indulgent brunch.

L’OV Osteria Vegetariana: With a warm and inviting ambiance, L’Osteria Vegetariana serves flavorful vegetarian cuisine in the heart of Oltrarno. From gazpacho and guacamole to pumpkin salad, porcini flan and vegan cheeses, there are delicious options to delight all plant-based eaters.

Specialty Coffee, Natural Wine & Vegan Gelato

Ditta Artigianale: The original specialty coffee shop in Florence, Ditta Artigianale is a household name in Florence and now boasts four beautiful locations throughout the city. A great place to catch up with friends or work at your computer, this cafe has an international flair with a satisfying menu. Enjoy coffees with plant-based mylk options, as well as regular treats like their seasonal latte menu. The food is high quality and the whole experience felt home-y, warm, well-curated and most importantly: delicious!

Retrobottega: This sandwich shop is located seconds away from the Duomo and offers panini with delicious ingredients, including options for vegetarians and vegans. Hip and cozy, Retrobottega is our favorite place to stop by for a midday snack. It also has a fun variety of natural and biodynamic wines.

Sorbetteria: An artisanal gelateria with three locations in Florence, La Sorbetteria has a huge variety of vegan flavors (especially in the summer!) made with carefully-sourced ingredients. An experimental “laboratory”, you’ll find everything from seasonal fruit sorbets (watermelon, raspberry) to creative combinations like lemongrass and coconut milk.

Shake Café: This place is THE place for smoothies, mushroom coffees, adaptogen everything and healthy sweet treats. Bright and modern, Shake Café excels at nourishing salads, tasty wraps, homemade bagels and more. An address that exemplifies balance, you’ll find detoxifying ginger shots and collagen smoothies alongside fizzy Mimosas and Bloody Mary’s.

Cortese Cafe 900: A raw pasticceria that reminds us of our local favorite, Grezzo in Rome, we couldn’t help but fall in love with Cortese Café 900‘s milk-free, organic chocolates. Don’t miss the pecan and raspberry raw cookies and picking up an assortment of pralines to gift someone you love. This café also offers a beautiful view of Santa Maria Novella.

Base V Juicery: This ‘fast food’ wellness shop really nails the wellness concept and philosophy. Base V Juicery serves cold-press juices, superfood smoothies, soups, bowls and an avocado toast that had us wishing we could enjoy every morning of our lives. Good ingredients elevate an experience and this place has the top of the top.

Enoteca Spontanea: A new natural wine bar with an emphasis on high-quality food? Yes, please. We love natural wine. We love the community it creates, and we love a place that stocks niche bottles by small producers. Enoteca Spontanea is cool without being pretentious, and you won’t tire of their changing menu or the cozy atmosphere inside.

Yoga, Pilates & Fitness Studios

Yoga Garage: This place is the OG yoga studio in Florence. Like its name suggests, the studio is located in a former car garage a short walk from the train station. We love Yoga Garage‘s uplifting classes, talented teachers, and the cool vibes. The studio regularly hosts workshops, teacher trainings and retreats.

The22: A member’s club that approaches wellness from every single angle, we can’t say enough good things about The22. It offers yoga, pilates, circuit training & fitness, ayurvedic consultations, massages, special events and so much more. The space is gorgeously curated and the staff are charismatic, kind and empowering. Founder Aparna Thadani has created something unique in Florence and we’re so glad we had the pleasure of experiencing it. 10/10 recommend!

V_Room Studio: V_Room small, bright studio is located right next to Piazza della Signoria and has two reformer machines — perfect for a private or couple Pilates session. The teachers are well-trained, and the space has another studio for mat pilates or yoga.

Casa Opy: A place for yoga, rituals, and more, Casa Opy holds women’s circles, cacao ceremonies, and a huge variety of yoga classes led by expert teachers. The cozy studio space is well-curated, and the classes feel thoughtful and well-prepared. A delightful discovery!

Spa & Beauty Services

Relax Florence: Nestled in the heart of the city, Relax Florence spa blends modern luxury with a touch of Florentine charm. From therapeutic massages to holistic treatments, it offers a range of wellness experiences tailored to melt away the stresses of daily life. Do not miss a sensorial indulgence in the salt room complete with mandala sketchbooks and wonderful tea service. Relax also offers childcare and EMS training.

The Parlour: With its chic decor, high-end products and singular view over the Arno River, The Parlour redefines the Florentine spa experience. This urban retreat offers a diverse range of spa services, from the best mani-pedi in the city (using Bio Sculpture polish) to professional blowouts and guest artists to curate your brows and lashes. With its personalized approach to beauty and wellness, this is the perfect place to enjoy an afternoon of pampering alongside some prosecco.

SoulSPAce: SoulSPAce embodies the essence of mindful rejuvenation, drawing inspiration from holistic practices to create a wellness sanctuary. The spa’s architecture and design reflect traditions of both East and West, creating an environment where nature, science, and experience harmoniously coexist. Enjoy a heated indoor pool, a hammam and cabins for personalized rituals and massages.

Worldly Wellness: A true hidden gem! Looking for a restorative massage in the busy city center? We love Worldly Wellness by Brì, an American transplant and Licensed Massage Therapist who has lived in Italy since 2016. A multi-disciplined healer, she offers a range of massage therapies, Reiki, breathwork, meditation support and more.

Hotels That Will Make You Feel Good

The Place Firenze: What feels better than entering a hotel and feeling immediately like you have arrived at your (very well-decorated) home? With just 20 rooms, The Place feels like a true haven in Florence with hospitality that makes you feel like you’ve had a full day at a spa. Located right in Piazza Santa Maria Novella, the location can’t be beat. Enjoy breakfast served in Ginori porcelain and artisanal Tuscan dishes while watching chic passerbys. We also love their new project “The Place of Wonders” which helps connect guests to local artisan experiences. For a truly special and unique stay: look no further than this home away from home.

Helvetia & Bristol: Steeped in history and charm, Helvetia & Bristol has been welcoming guests since 1885. From the moment you enter the opulent lobby adorned with period furnishings, you are enveloped in a world where impeccable service meets the art of well-being. The hotel features 64 elegant rooms and suites with bespoke furnishings, like silk wallpaper by the historic Antico Setificio Fiorentino, Murano-glass chandeliers, antique mirrors and more curated details. The property also has one of the city’s best spas which features Roman baths (with a calidarium, frigidarium and tepidarium). Enjoy a range of treatments and luxurious Cinq Mondes amenities.

Wellness Shops

Erboristeria DeHerbore: Dating back to 1978, this adorable, well-stocked “herbalist” sells its own product line alongside all of the best specialty wellness brands in Italy and Europe. DeHerbore has a knowledgeable staff who can recommend products for any use or ailment, whether its spices, creams or delicious scents.

Officina Profumo – Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella: This place is a classic for a reason. Florence’s most famous (and beautiful) pharmacy dates back to the 13th century and is located inside a stunning building that promotes wellness in every sense of the word. With its extensive line of perfumes, serums and cleansers, it’s no surprise the Farmaceutica di Santa Maria Novella is one of our favorite Italian skincare and beauty brands.

Parks & Outdoor Spaces

Parco Delle Cascine: This is the largest public park in Florence and is an excellent way to get out of the city center for walking, running, biking and more. After you’ve thoroughly explored the beautiful Renaissance center, head out into this natural paradise. We love the pavoniera, which used to be used as a peacock cage!

Boboli Gardens: The Boboli Gardens were once the private gardens of the Medici family. They are curated, they are gorgeous, and they are a perfect place to bask in Florence’s Renaissance magnificence while also getting fresh air and nature. Note that the gardens are considered a “museum” so you need a ticket to enter: it’s hilly so bring comfortable shoes!

Orti Dipinti: This beautiful community garden was recommended by a friend as “a beautiful place to get a breath of fresh herbal air and cozy creative soul inspiration” and we couldn’t agree more. Orti Dipinti has green markets, events, and a great community so be sure to check it out.

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