One of the images that come to our minds when we think of Italy (apart from pizza and pasta) is the leaning tower. And since this was my first trip to Italy, I could not miss it. So we took the opportunity to take a day trip to Pisa from Florence.
Pisa from Florence
Stazione Pisa Centrale
When we got to the station we glanced at the map to seek the Tower of Pisa. It is only 2 km from the Stazione Pisa Centrale and suitable to walk. You have to cross the Arno River and you can go by the Ponte Solferino or the Ponte di Mezzo.
Piazza Dei Miracoli
Piazza del Duomo, better known as Piazza Dei Miracoli, is an area where the Tower of Pisa is located. Other important buildings are inside this walled square. These are the Duomo or Cathedral, the Baptistery and the Campo Santo (cemetery).
The Cathedral of St. Mary of the Assumption is built in a Romanesque style, with Byzantine and Islamic influences. The ticket price is €2,00 ($2.36 USD). If you buy a ticket to enter any of the other monuments, you can enter with the same ticket for free.
The Baptistery of San Giovanni is the largest in Italy and is slightly taller than the tower. They commissioned its construction to an architect known as Diotisalvi. Later Nicola Pisano made changes to the construction and added sculptures. The interior is not very decorated and they say it has excellent acoustics.
Campo Santo is a rectangular construction in a Gothic style where famous figures of Pisa are buried. Inside there are 84 sarcophagi from the Roman era, although the collection is much larger. They said they used earth brought from the holy lands (Jerusalem). From this name comes the word Camposanto (Santo means holy) to call the Catholic cemeteries.
Leaning Tower of Pisa
The Leaning Tower is, needless to say, the most famous of the monuments. Its fame and nickname are due to the 5.5-degree tilt it presents. This inclination is due to the swampy surface of Pisa. In fact, there are many buildings with a slight inclination in Pisa, including those in Piazza dei Miracoli.
On the way back to the train station we got lost and took a longer way. We passed through a wall and a tower that I later learned was the Guelph Tower. This tower is in the Cittadella Vecchia area, which was where they built the ships of Pisa. At the moment, inside they display some coats of arms belonging to important families of Pisa. You can climb the tower for € 2.00.
Walking along Arno river’s banks we found the Ponte di Mezzo to return to the train station. The busy street that takes you straight to the station is Corso Italia. On this street, you will find several shops and restaurants.