It is an alternative to the high-season tourist madness of Florence or Rome. the information boards you come across outside is more notable are in Italian only. In fact, the town boasts no famous showpieces, and therefore no crowds of tourists or rows of souvenir shops are around. Just the genuine vita Toscana (Tuscan way of living).
- By train:The obvious approach is from Pisa, from which Lucca is only half-an-hour by car or by train, making the two cities a good double-bill. Trains shuttle between Lucca and Pisa’s main station about every hour, and the latter is also the station for Pisa’s airport. The distance between this airport and Pisa is exceptionally short – around a mile – the service between them operating about every twenty minutes for not much more than a euro. Buses run even more cheaply and frequently between airport and Pisa train station. Be warned, though, that this service tails off during the evening, and (given building work in Spring 2006) you should first check inside the terminal exactly where the bus stop is.The main car parks are scattered around the main road which encircles the ramparts. The station is similarly placed, just south of the wall; on coming out you should aim half left to pass through the Porta San Pietro and then roughly straight on for a few more minutes to reach the big Piazza Napoleone.
- By car:
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It’s possible, for a few euros, to climb one or two of the two highest bell-towers to look out on the surrounding Tuscan hills. Lucca’s other tourist attractions include the Pisan style Duomo, alongside its own museum, that contain a fine amount of artwork by Jacopo della Quercia. San Michele in Foro is another interesting church to visit. Pinacoteca Nazionale and the Museo Guinigi are Lucca’s art and sculpture galleries which contains art-lovers will particulalry be curious of.
The tourists will appreciate the coffee/tea shops and little places selling local wines and cheeses on Via Paolina or those looking for smart boutiques should head for the Via Gallitassi. A presto! Ciao!
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