Our trip to Pisa and Florence was a short one because we spent a lot of time in the train and also wasted a lot of time outside our hostel waiting for the owner to open the door for us. Because of that, we only had about only a few hours to see both places in the same day.
Passengers get to enjoy a beautiful view of the beach along the journey.
Although Pisa is more known worldwide for the Leaning Tower, the city has many other attractions too with over 20 churches, some palaces and the various scenic bridges across the River Arno.
There are a couple of bus services just outside the Pisa Centrale train station and only one of them (red line, called LAM ROSSO) goes to Piazza del Duomo, where the Leaning Tower of Pisa is located.
The bus tickets could be purchased either on board, or at the ticket machines. Either way, you will need to validate them when you get on the bus. However, we’ve seen many tourists who just enter the bus without a ticket and the bus driver cum conductor wouldn’t even bother to check. You can save €1.50 per trip by doing that but it is totally up to your own conscious.
I don’t know about you but I always thought there’s nothing else around the Leaning Tower beside the tower itself. It was only when I reached there I realized there is also a cathedral as well as other monuments that constitutes the Piazza del Duomo (Cathedral Square) And the Leaning Tower is actually the bell tower of the cathedral.
From L to R: The Baptistery, Duomo and an angle statue.
You can enter the medieval Duomo and I think it is highly recommended to do so, as the interior is beautiful with impressive mosaic in the apse and gilded ceiling. It’s a pity we did not enter due to insufficient time, we only allocated 2 hours at most to visit Pisa including the travel time.
It is actually forbidden to step into the grass at the compound but many tourists still do so to get the typical holding-up-Pisa photo.
If you don’t know how the pose is done, here’s an example: at least three tourists in the photo are doing it, some even using their feet lol. And as much as you feel this is a cheesy and unoriginal thing to do, I guess you will still do it in the end, eventually. Unfortunately, I gave in and did the holding-up pose too due to tourist peer pressure…
Originally intended to be a vertical structure, the tower started to lean due to poorly laid foundation set in an unstable soil. It must be a blessing in disguise, as it was due to its tilt that made Pisa famous worldwide.
The tilt was also said to be contributed by the hundreds of thousands tourists who climb up the tower daily. Although certified safe and stable for at least the next 200 years, only 30 tourists are allowed to ascend the tower once every 30 mins.
A number of tent shops here selling souvenirs next to the brick-walled Spedale Nuovo di Santo Spirito (New Hospital of Holy Spirit)