Almost perfectly preserved Lucca still resides within high walls, though they are now topped by green parkland. Take a guided walk through the old town, with its medieval towers and nearly 100 churches. Stroll from piazza to piazza, and absorb the city’s history through its architecture. The Duomo, Lucca’s Romanesque cathedral, dates from the 12th century and features a façade with elaborate reliefs and columns.
The Gothic interior includes an image of Christ on the cross, supposedly carved by Nicodemus, a purported witness of the crucifixion. The Duomo also boasts Tintoretto's magnificent painting of the Last Supper. You’ll have free time in Lucca to explore, do some shopping, or sample the local cuisine.
Once a powerful maritime republic, and a rival to Genoa and Venice, Pisa offers a Renaissance splendor of its own. A short, guided walk leads to the dramatic Miracle Square, with an array of elegant buildings in Pisa’s own Romanesque style.
Here you’ll find the Campo Santo, a cemetery with some handsome architecture; the Baptistry, with a statue of St. John the Baptist on top of its dome; and the Duomo, Pisa’s medieval cathedral. You’ll recognize its freestanding bell tower immediately as the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa. Galileo is said to have used the 180-foot tower during his experiments with gravity. Today it leans 14-degrees from perpendicular. Recently reopened, admittance to the tower is limited and is not included in this excursion.