Discover Pisa and Lucca on Your Private Tour
The Miracle Square with its leaning tower, cathedral, baptistery and “Campo Santo” form the architectural complex which is commonly considered one of the most beautiful in Europe. At close range, the city of Lucca has a totally different character. It has a perfectly preserved historical center and city walls, is without a doubt where Tuscany’s rich and powerful past is most visible. The dichotomy of the two towns is a study in how Italy itself has progressed and yet maintains its roots at the same time.
Pisa was a thriving and exciting town in the Middle Ages. The greatest legacy is its unique architecture and art. The Duomo was the first cathedral in Tuscany where the innovative “Pisan-Romanesque” style was fully developed and later copied for many other churches built all over the western Mediterranean. Inside, the main feature of the church is the elaborate pulpit. The Baptistery, in front of the façade, contains another example of a lovely pulpit. You may want to also visit the Campo Santo (holy field), a monumental cemetery said to have been filled by the “holy” dirt brought by the Pisan crusaders from the Hill of Cavalry in Jerusalem.
The Leaning Tower probably carries the most fame of any building of its kind. There are many legends that are attached to the tower, including beliefs that perhaps it was deliberately constructed to lean. Perhaps Galileo let objects of different weights fall from the tower and timed the fall to demonstrate his theories about bodies in motion and gravity rules. The tower leans approximately 14 feet from the perpendicular. And it continues to lean a few millimeters more every year. Climbing the tower is for many a cathartic and inspiring experience, and, with time permitting, should not be missed. This is the only medieval tower-style building in the world where one can walk outside at every single level and walk around its exterior 360°. No matter what the origins of the leaning are, there is no doubt that the tower itself would be an architectural and artistic wonder even if it were standing straight up.
A neighboring sister city to Pisa, located just to the north, is Lucca. Lucca’s 16th-century walls serve as a perfect foreshadow to the serene beauty of the city within. Thanks to the walls, Lucca was protected from any siege; consequently, its historic center is perfectly preserved. One of the only few in Europe that can boast that, and the only one in Italy of its size. In the city center, you’ll find landmarks diverse in appearance and history, from a medieval maze of alleyways to the Roman grid-like arrangement of passageways, to Renaissance loggias, to Rococo facades.
Lucca has a distinctive look among Tuscany’s towns; beneath red-tiled roofs, the buildings are brick, white or cream; the palaces are more open, less fortress-like, and the church crenulations rise slender and delicate toward the sky. It is more feminine, more aristocratic, and more northern European than other cities in Tuscany. This could be due to the fact that unlike other areas that were very agrarian, Lucca flourished in the Middle Ages as a banking and merchant center and became known principally for its beautiful silk. Today the city is said to produce the finest olive oil in the world.
Choose Chauffeured Tour to Enjoy Pisa and Lucca
After traveling from Florence or Livorno, and making your way to Pisa, we will drive through the center to briefly see some of the other monuments of the city. We normally visit Pisa on our tour from Florence or Livorno first since it’s a lot faster to get through, and its monuments are older than those of Lucca. This allows you to put the things that you see in Lucca in context. Visiting Pisa normally takes about 1 hour, but could be extended to 90 minutes if one chooses to climb the tower. The tower can be climbed only if it was booked beforehand as the chances to find available tickets at the last minute, especially in height of the tourist season are very slim. The pleasant and scenic drive from Pisa to Lucca takes about 30 minutes. Lucca as a whole has more locations to offer and better restaurant offerings, for this reason, we usually try to get there before lunch.
Lucca deserves at least 2 hours to explore plus lunch time. The time touring the city may turn into 3 hours if clients decide to rent bicycles. This is something very worthwhile, since the city center is perfectly flat and small enough to use a bike. Also by bike one can ride along the whole of the city wall, since the top was made into a promenade in the 1800s. If our car service was booked with a Driver/Guide, the DG would act as bicycle leader and escort the clients through the city. In Lucca, there are also many nice shopping opportunities, especially clothing, shoes, draperies, housewares.
Our chauffeur-driven vehicles can access the center of the city of both Pisa, driving right up to the tower, and Lucca, driving everywhere in the center. With that in mind, we can accommodate our clients walking preferences during Pisa and Lucca day tours from Florence or Livorno. Drivers will stay with the car, since Pisa is extremely simple to visit, if the visit is limited to the main square and tower. Lucca is somewhat more extensive, since it has a more significant historical and cultural center.
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What our customers are saying
I want to thank you for such a wonderful vacation that my family had with your company. Our trip to Italy was one of the best we have experienced. That greatness was made in large part by the people that looked after us and toured us from place to place. I hope to travel with you again when we come back to Italy!
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I was extremely satisfied with all aspects of our journeys from Florence to Siena and from Siena to Rome. The drivers and cars were excellent, the timing perfect and I would have no hesitation in continuing to book with you in future. Thank you for all the help with our transportation needs. Your team is so great!
We had a wonderful day trip with our Driver Guide! He was polite, intelligent, considerate and extremely knowledgeable! We appreciate every consideration he showed to make our experience in Tuscany beyond our expectations. We will definitely recommend your company to our friends and use you again in future!
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Our transfers from airport and all other transfers were perfect. All of the drivers we had were absolutely brilliant, attentive and welcoming as well as being on time in every case.
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