Florence Driving Map, the ZTL explained
Inside the old city walls of Florence (well, what used to be the walls and is now the viale or large avenue circling the city), driving (and parking!) is limited to registered vehicles (city residents, buses, taxis, etc.) except for a small area around the main train station (Firenze SMN or Santa Maria Novella). Florentines call this the ZTL, or Zona Traffico Limitato. It is important to be aware of the ZTL and it's rules to avoid receiving large fines for driving your car into the center of Florence (or the ever expanding zone around it).
- You can drive in the ZTL, but you need to get permission first
- Never drive on pedestrian (pedonale) only streets!
- On Sundays, the ZTL is open
- You must use the proper entrances
On the map below (click it to download a PDF version suitable for printing), you can see the ZTL entry points (red and blue "T"s) and the various zones by letter (which correspond to where residents can park). The blue "T"s are where you can enter with a car or other motorized vehicle - the red "T"s are for buses and other public and emergency vehicles only, and even with a permit to enter (resident or tourist), you are not allowed enter at the red "T" signs (I know from personal experience - and it was an expensive lesson).
The hours of limited entry are currently:
- Monday to Friday from 7:30 to 20:00
- Saturdays from 07:30 to 16:00
- Sunday is open
During the summer there are additional closing hours which can change from year to year but in general run from the first Thursday of April to the first Sunday of October and is called the "ZTL NOTTURNA ESTIVA". The below hours are just a sample (from the summer of 2022), these may change from year to year:
- from 23:00 on Thursday to 3:00 on Friday
- from 23:.00 on Friday to 3:00 on Saturday
- from 23:00 on Saturday to 3:00 on Sunday
So remember - if you are just coming to Florence as stop on a day trip, or you are staying at a self catering apartment or Airbnb (i.e. not a hotel), you can not legally drive into (most of) the center unless you get a pass first (although we have heard stories of people doing so and not getting tickets, but you are really taking a chance). If you do drive into the ZTL without proper permission the fines are steep and the local authorities are getting better and better at finding you and making sure you pay. In any case, this is something to be aware and careful of! There are a few tips and tricks as mentioned above (Sundays are open, as are nights from 7:30 PM to 7:30 AM, but not in the summer, etc.). Lastly, the darker green shaded streets and piazzas are "zona pedonale" or pedestrian zones, and you shouldn't be driving on them at all!
For reference, here is an older Florence ZTL map - you can see how the zone has grown in the ensuring years:
And lastly, here is a very good video that sums up everything mentioned above: