An important hub of travel, culture, and commerce during Roman times, Lucca, Italy now represents some of the most elegant beauty and history of Tuscany. The landscape here is lovely and the hills are more gentle and rolling than those of the Tuscan countryside further south. All over the city, timeless Italian traditions are shared in warm and welcoming restaurants headed by world-class chefs. Lucca is also known for its art scene and beautiful architecture.
Here are few suggestions of things to do in Lucca:
- Take an Italian cooking class: After you've sampled some of the legendary cuisine of Lucca, you'll be inspired to bring some of the flavors home with you. It's easy to find a class here as local chefs seem more than pleased to share their skills.
- Guinigi Tower: Climb the metal stairs to the very top of this tower built years ago by the citizens of this town. When you reach the top, you'll be surprised by the trees that are growing there and you'll be rewarded with breathtaking views of the Italian countryside.
- Lucca's Duomo: Also called the Cathedral of San Martino, this historic landmark feels beautifully authentic, local, and secluded.
- The Piazza Anfiteatro: Once an ancient roman amphitheater, this charming plaza lies in the center of Lucca's historic district. Start here as you make your way to other historical sites and architectural highlights.
- Villa Reale: This beautiful restored villa surrounded by 17th century gardens was built by Elisa Bacciochi, Napoleon's sister. Stroll through the gardens and visit the house, which has been occupied by noble families for centuries.
- Museo Nazionale di Palazzo Mansi: This is one of several notable art museums and historic sites, a place renowned for its love of art and culture.
Get the most out of your time in Lucca by staying in a vacation rental. Book a condo or apartment in the heart of town, or rent a beautiful villa with views of the hills and farms; you won't be disappointed! If you have some extra time to explore, you may want to include a visit to Florence in your plans, since it's only a short day's trip to the east.