Holidays in Lucca - Day trips from Lucca - Lucca tours

Stroll from church to piazza
to enchanted gardens

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Explore Lucca

Lucca is known as the “city of a hundred churches” and while it is indeed rich in religious and artistic heritage, inside and outside its walls, this Tuscan city offers many other types of beauty.

Allow yourself to get lost and wander through the cobblestoned streets of the centre, browse the local craft shops, take a seat at an outdoor cafe in the Piazza dell’Anfiteatro and take a walk along the city walls and take in the scent of limes.

Things to see in Lucca

Torre delle Ore and Via Fillungo

Via Fillungo is Lucca’s shopping street par excellence. Some of the locally-made highlights include shirt-maker Cerri and silk-maker Zazzi. At the corner with via dell’Arancio you’ll see the Torre delle Ore, the oldest tower in the city. More than 200 steps will bring you up to the manual clock mechanism, a small wonder of engineering, which is one of the oldest still functioning in Europe.

Walls of Lucca

Lucca’s city walls are a rare example in Europe of still-intact modern fortifications. The walls were constructed in the 16th and 17th centuries and are completely encircled by a four-kilometre path. Originally intended to protect the city from the expansionistic designs of Florence, in the 19th century the Bourbon princess Maria Luisa saw the opportunity to turn them into a pedestrian feature. They are now the locals’ most treasured feature, used for walking, jogging and just relaxing in front of the beauty of Lucca.

Museum – Puccini’s Birth Home

Take a trip back in time to explore the origins and history of the great Italian composer Giacomo Puccini, creator of operas like Turandot, La Bohème and Madame Butterfly.

Piazza San Frediano

This long, narrow piazza holds one of the most beautiful churches in Lucca: the Basilica of San Frediano. Its facade is embedded with Byzantine-style mosaics in gold while inside the vaults are supported by 40 Roman columns, each different from the other.

Piazza San Michele

When you enter this square you are faced with a true masterpiece. The medieval palazzi all look on, through their polypore windows and arches. At the centre is the wonderful white marble Church of San Michele in Foro, in typical Pisan Romanesque style, with precious treasures inside: the Madonna and Child by Andrea della Robbia, the Pala Magrini by Filippo Lippi and the Virgin in high relief by Raffaello da Montelupo.

Piazza dell’Anfiteatro

Not just a piazza, but a world to watch, a museum, a theatre. Built right on the ruins of the Roman Amphitheatre, with its elliptical shape and the asymmetrical buildings surrounding it, this is still the place to meet, to stop and chat and sit outdoors with a drink waiting for the evening, just as people have done for centuries.

Museo Nazionale di Villa Guinigi

This beautiful 15th-century villa once belonged to the lords of the city. Today you can discover the treasure of Lucca: ecclesiastical and civil artefacts, archaeological remains. Among other works are Donatello’s terracotta of the Madonna and Child, Etruscan remains and Guido Reni’s Christ Crucified.

Torre Guinigi

This is one of the few towers still standing out of the 250 that once towered over Lucca. It was built by the powerful Guinigi family, patrons of the city and its profile is easy to spot by the oaks that stand on top, symbol of power and rebirth. Tackle its 230 steps and you’ll be rewarded by a wonderful panorama over the whole of Lucca.

Botanical Garden

The Bourbon Maria Luisa founded these gardens in 1820. Today, after almost two centuries of history, you’re rewarded by two extra hectares of nature where you can enjoy green space in the heart of the city. The pathways are flanked by magnolia, perfumed olive trees, Balearic boxwood and by the garden’s own symbol, the cedar of Lebanon,

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Things to see in Tuscany

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