Sharing the joys of solo travel: a contradiction? Not here; not in Italy. Eating alone in Florence doesn’t have to be lonely after all!
Traveling around Italy is not an easy task for your stomach. There’s lots of food everywhere, and everything is so delicious.
Italians will never stop bragging about our incredible food, and Florentines are no exception. If we’ve found a good dish or recipe, we will let you know and then force you to recognize how great it is—and then to eat it. All.
So when it comes to eating alone in Florence, no worries—you likely won’t be on your own for long.
Food Culture in Italy
For Italians, sharing food is the best way to take care of each other. From standard nonne to thoughtful boyfriends, everybody will always make sure that you had a good meal. “Cosa hai mangiato oggi?” (“what did you eat today?”) will always be the most common way to start a conversation.
As a matter of fact, the way Italians enjoy their meals goes beyond regional differences. The concept of convivialità truly characterizes Italians as part of one nation. We all share the belief that there’s nothing that makes you appreciate life more than a belly full of tasty food and a dizzy head from a glass of fine wine, all mixed up with a good company.
Keep that in mind when you travel in Italy, eating is not just filling your body with energy. It’s also a moment to feel the pleasure of being alive.
Tips for Dining Solo in Florence
Solo travel can be the experience of a lifetime. It’ll make you understand how strong you are as you face the world on your own. And it gives you the great advantage of not having to compromise with anyone on anything, giving you complete freedom within your reach.
But if you feel lost when it comes to eating alone, don’t worry: here at Devour Tours, we have a solution for that too.
It doesn’t matter if you feel like you can’t lose even a second on your sightseeing schedule. Please make the time to sit down to eat!
Even if you just have a simple panino to eat alone, find a bench or a step (just not one that’s on one of the streets where it’s prohibited to eat at certain times of day), and enjoy that little miracle that you’re holding in your hands. You’ll never be in this moment again, so take the chance to live most of it now.
Also, don’t think about the people around you. It may not seem like it, but Florence is a big city, and seeing someone eating alone is not a strange experience for anybody. Getting over that mental hurdle is a huge part of feeling comfortable while eating alone in Florence.
Go Where the Locals Go
You can also eat alone inside. Osterie are the places to go—they’re not fancy restaurants, but beautiful, lively places, where the real Florentine lives flourish.
Need a few suggestions to get you started? Ostaria dei Centopoveri (Via del Porcellana, 41R) is the place to be. While waiting for your typical Fiorentina, sip your wine with gusto, and observe people around you as part of a great theater.
Trattoria da Rocco (Piazza Lorenzo Ghiberti) shares the same vibes, and the place is so small that you will hardly notice you’re eating alone. If you still feel uncomfortable, it’s always helpful to keep a book handy that you can read while you eat.
Make New Friends
Some restaurants even encourage their guests to share the same table. In Alla Vecchia Bettola (Viale Vasco Pratolini, 3/5/7), you may even find yourself eating alongside a complete stranger. It’s the perfect opportunity to make a new local friend!
Not sure how to start a conversation? Do it the Florentine way: start talking about food.
Italians love discussing what they’re eating, and we’ll always have an opinion on how our way to do it is way better than others (Florentines, in particular, master the art of criticism). You’ll soon find out that eating alone is fine, but eating with a new friend might be even better.
Ready to make some new friends while enjoying fantastic Florentine cuisine at the same time? Our Florence food tour is calling your name. Join us for an evening out in one of the city’s most vibrant neighborhoods, where you’ll duck into our favorite eateries and dig into the best local bites in the company of fellow foodies. Come hungry!
Eliana Ferrari doesn’t like to stay put. She’s traveled all around Europe, excited by every encounter with people, food, and art. How did she end up in Florence? She fell in love: with the magnificence of every corner, with Bolgheri wine, and with the famous Florentine wit (one Florentine’s in particular!).