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Walking through the Mercato Centrale in Florence was quite an experience. After being in bustling touristy Rome, it was a great break to get some insight into real Italian living. Our senses were working overtime with all of the fresh produce, aging cheeses and homemade pasta.

I would recommend coming hungry because you will want to try everything! If you are short on time, pick up some local cheeses, salumi and focaccia for a lunch on the go. Take note that the market normally closes after lunch, so plan accordingly. (Monday through Saturday from 7 a.m. to 2 p.m., with additional Saturday hours from 4 p.m. to 7 p.m)

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