As they say, “when in Rome”, but this time it’s Pisa. We took a great day trip via train from Firenze to Pisa, to see the Leaning Tower.
It was pretty simple to get a ticket the day before and hop on the next day. We had a bit of an adventure coming back, though!
We got off the train and it was a crisp, winter morning, colder than Firenze here in Pisa so we’re glad we have more warm clothes than normal. Off to Pisa, it’s about a half hour walk north.
I had a few things to stop at on the way, one was the Keith Haring mural, what a huge work of art with a message: “unity”. It’s referred to by TripAdvisor, etc., but make sure you find it, it’s easy to miss:
And no trip to any city in Italy is ever complete for me without checking out the street art:
This one made me miss Albania!
You reach the Ponte di Mezzo bridge and look west to see the Arno curve out of sight:
And we reached the Piazza dei Cavalieri and were surrounded by Medici history. We were reminded of the knights of Malta, which Cosimo Medici I founded, the Knights of St. John, were founded here and moved to Malta to fight the Ottoman Turks and other eastern invaders. This square has seven entrances, it was used in the past as a central meeting place:
We walked a few more minutes down a long shopping street and then you see the Leaning Tower peeking over the buildings. Wow it really does obviously lean, and it’s more obvious the closer you get:
What a shame it’s so expensive just to walk up it, but they gotta make a buck somehow I guess. If I remember right it was 25E/Adult and 15E per kid so 80E just to walk up some stairs – we gave it a miss; seeing it was enough.
Of course there’s more here, we enjoyed the rest of the Duomo here, with a Cathedral and Baptistry. Now I understand why Rick Steves loves Italy so much. So much art and culture in one country is pretty astounding.
Another gigantic bronze door, not as grand as Our Lady of the Rocks in Montenegro, but close!
Coming back around from the other side you can really see the lean in even more detail:
As we turned to leave again after an hour or so of walking around, we went and bought some lunch from a market and ate at a park, we went back one more time then headed home.
So, the little thing I mentioned at the beginning – our departing train changed tracks suddenly, and we had 5 minutes to run and catch it. That was fun! The moral of the story is always keep your eyes and ears out for travel changes and you won’t get left behind – and never be afraid to ask someone for help, the train employees were always helpful, and never led us astray.
Tick Pisa off the bucket-list!