Specialist Italy tour operators are offering the perfect opportunity to take in the work and history of the legendary artist, with a private guided Florence tour.

A key celebration of da Vinci's life and work will be held at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, with the new exhibition titled Water, nature's microscope – The Codex Leicester and Leonardo da Vinci. Roma Experience will take in this spectacular exhibition on their private Uffizi Gallery Tour in January 2019.

Leonardo da Vinci was a true Renaissance artist, with passions that stemmed from painting to engineering, and it's thanks to the work he did that the modern practices of paleontology and architecture are as they are today. Da Vinci lived and worked in Italy until 1516, when he left Italy for France at age 64, with hands too crippled to paint. Here, he became close friends with King Francis I, and the two discussed everything from philosophy to art, architecture, and engineering. It is even said that da Vinci died in the king's arms, with the king “supporting his head to give him such assistance and do him such favour as he could, in the hope of alleviating his sufferings”.

The Uffizi gallery is particularly special, as the Codex Leicester will be exhibited in Italy for the first time since it left the hands of the Earls of Leicester. The Codex is a mixture of da Vinci's observations and theories on astronomy, the various properties of water, rocks, and fossils, as well as celestial light and other musings. Topics addressed include an explanation of why fossils can be found on mountains – hundreds of years before plate tectonics became accepted scientific theory – the movement of water, and the luminosity of the moon, where Leonardo theorised that the moon's surface is covered by water, which reflects light from the sun.

The Codex was recently bought in 1994 by Bill Gates for an immense $30 million, making it the second highest selling book in history, and the pages have now all be digitised. 72 folios were compiled by da Vinci between 1504 and 1508, the very time when Florence was considered the “school of the world”.

During the exhibition, the Codex will be displayed using a Codescope, which allows visitors to turn the pages digitally and read it, first hand, for themselves. Eike Schmidt, the director of Uffizi Gallery, said in a statement that this exhibition demonstrates “the museum's care in making accessible for everyone complex themes about scientific research, and also looking in fundamental episodes in the history of science with a new and modern point of view”.

With Roma Experience's tours of Florence, travellers can experience themselves the masterpieces of Leonardo da Vinci's life. The full day tour of Florence takes guests around the best parts of Florence all in one day, on a private tour, looking at the Ponte Vecchio, the Accademia Gallery, the Baptistery of St. John, Piazza della Signoria, and so much more.

To truly embrace da Vinci's works, travellers should look to the Uffizi Gallery Florence Tour, a private tour that is perfectly designed to admire the incredible artworks created by unsurpassed masters 500 years ago. The tour includes visits to see Botticelli's “Birth of Venus”, Giotto's “Ognissanti Madonna”, Paolo Uccello's “Battle of San Romano”, and so many more. During January 2019, the tour will also include an in-depth tour of the special exhibition celebrating Leonardo da Vinci.

Prices for the Uffizi Gallery Private Tour start from £214.46 for a three-hour tour of the gallery, including skip-the-line admission tickets. Find out more here.