Quick searchAdvanced Search
Lucca is better enjoyed from an elevated position. You can walk on the city walls and enjoy the view over the houses and their balconies packed with flowers and plants, and the thick network of narrow streets that enclose the old districts. You can also climb a tower, Torre Guinigi: from there the view sweeps from the Apennines and the Apuane mountains in the distance to the closest towers, bell towers, and roofs of the ancient medieval buildings and of the Baptistery. Down to the street level, you can wander along Via del Fosso, where kids fish in the ditch with their lines, and get to the Duomo di San Martino, which houses the wonderful marble Funerary Monument of Ilaria del Carretto, a masterpiece of Italian Quattrocento sculpted by Jacopo della Quercia in 1408. The streets of the city centre, lined with high palaces, suddenly open into breathtaking squares, such as piazza Napoleone, or the original elliptic Piazza dell’Anfiteatro, built on the underground pre-Roman layout. The most luxury shops are in Via Fillungo. At Caffè Di Simo, Giacomo Puccini, who was born in via del Poggio not far from here, came to sip a good coffee with his friend the poet Giovanni Pascoli, and a cheerful circle of musicians, philosophers, and men of letters. Memories of the famous composers can be found at every corner in Lucca and in its surroundings. And when the lampposts light up along the Lucca walls, and the streets get empty, it still seems to hear the notes of the piano with which Giacomo Puccini composed Tourandot.