Saturday, August 25, 2012

Pisa and that Leaning Tower

We decided that our Tuscany adventure wouldn't be complete without a trip to Pisa to see the Leaning Tower we'd all heard so much about. Unfortunately, if we had it to do over, I think we would have skipped Pisa and maybe made the further trek out to Cinq Terre.

It was a 90 minute or so drive from our villa through beautiful countryside. The day was a bit overcast and rainy, but that suited us just fine. We arrived just before noon, parked and then walked to the walled area where the tower, a church and the baptistery are located in Pisa. The town of Pisa itself was nothing to look at and didn't seem to have a lot going for it - a bit run down.

When we entered the grounds, we could see the tower right away as well as the thousands of people - the place was packed! It felt a little like the Wisconsin Dells in the summertime. And every group trying to get that stupid picture of someone holding up the leaning tower. We wandered around a bit, but honestly, there just isn't much to do here once you've seen the tower. We had hoped to get tickets to go to the top of the tower, but they were sold out until 5:30pm (it was only about noon!) so we took our photos, walked around the square in the light rain and then decided to get out of there and away from the tourist crowd.

 Our lean friends, Brad & Sherry at the leaning tower!

This photo gives you a sense of the crowds. It was really awful and difficult to get a good photo of the tower without a mass of people in it. So, not our favorite city in Tuscany, but we were happy to have seen the tower.

We spent the rest of the afternoon in Lucca, a nearby town which has a wall around the outside and limits the number of cars that can enter. We eventually found a place to have lunch and did a little shopping. The weather cleared a bit and we had a nice afternoon wandering around the small streets and alleyways of Lucca.

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