Image by Marina T Alamanou

LUCCA

The imposing tree lined wall which totally encloses the incredible maze of medieval streets, the smart boutique shops, the Romanesque churches and the bright, inviting squares are just delightful! This is Lucca.

Can you tell it’s one of our favourite places? The best starting point is Piazza Napoleone, which in July hosts the Lucca Music Festival where artists such as Elton John, Simply Red and Burt Baccarach have entertained an intimate audience in this quite unique setting.

In this square,  modernized during the reign of the sister of Napoleone Bonaparte: you must visit the Palazzo Ducale. Today the Building represents the privileged place of the politics and the culture of the city.

Make your way  Teatro del Giglio, where the famous lyric composer Giacomo Puccini began his musical career.

Then cut through the square to the Church of San Michele in Foro, one of the two city cathedrals, it is the best representation of Romanico-Pisano style in Lucca and its building was promoted by Pope Alessandro II. Walking through Via Fillungo, you can enjoy shopping in the best shops in the city, at the same time, you can admire the several Chiasso (ancient medieval streets) on the sides and admire the Torre delle Ore, the second tallest tower, in the historic district, to Torre Guinigi.

You cannot leave Lucca before visiting the Piazza Anfiteatro, a charming enclosed square with delightful shops and restaurants. It was built by the Romans in the 54 B.C. during emperor Claudio's reign, using the form of the Colosseum. We would highly recommend that you hire a bicycle from one of the shops that you see as you enter the town and cycle around the walls, dipping now and again into the town to see the sights.

It’s an easy flat ride and without stops would only take 20 minutes to complete the entire circuit of the wall.

A must!

 

  • Parking

Due to traffic restrictions it’s best to park outside the walls, remember to make a note of the car position and the gate you use to enter the town – once within the walls it’s very easy to forget which way you came in!