Every town and city has its own delightful character, something that makes it particular, charming, unlike other cities.
The provincial centre of Lucca in Tuscany could be described as quaint, historical, pretty, as could many surrounding towns. For me, Lucca was set apart by it’s wider streets, the bicycles and the big, leafy trees along the wall that wraps the old town.
As I explored, I was particularly taken with the old doorbell buttons, with their shiny plates, rustic knobs and delicate script. The big old doors also struck my fancy and I was charmed by the bicycles casually left along stones walls outside shops and restaurants.
Custard, caramel and caffe tones dominate, sometimes with a dollop of cream, making the town a delicious feast for the inquisitive eye.
Here are some of my photos of Lucca’s bells, doors and bicycles.
Tips for a day in Lucca:
Lucca is well connected by train. We took a train from Florence (Firenze) that took 1hr 20 minutes and cost 6.40 Euros each way.
There are lots of little churches and 3 big main churches to see.
The ‘top’ sight is the amphitheatre. Although just crawling with tourists, this is well worth a look. It is a piazza surrounded by colourful, curved buildings that create a wide open space in the centre. Restaurants and shops live in the ground level buildings and include a toy shop, a vintage clothes shop and boutiques.
Bicycles are the transportation method of choice in Lucca. You can hire a bike from around the train station or on most streets that connect with the wall. We paid 3 Euros for an hour and cycled the path along the top of the wall 1.5 times with ease.
If you are not cycling, you are wandering on foot. Lucca has a compact historical centre with lots of little nooks to delight in.
Go for lunch. With lots of cafes and restaurants throughout the old town, as well as leafy picnic areas along the wall, Lucca is an ideal lunch getaway. We ate at Osteria dal Manz on Via Cascane Battisti (28). It was pretty wow, blending traditional quality dishes and wines with modern-rustic setting and friendly, funky wait staff. It is also a little off the tourist trail, making it a nice getaway where you can relax for hours in true Italian style.