Lucca is easily one of the top destinations in Tuscany. Among the many sights and sounds to be found in this ancient city, you’ll find the best preserved wall of any of the walled cities. Lucca has close to one hundred ancient churches and there are excellent streets for walking, hiking and just browsing through endless arrays of shops and restaurants, but the most intriguing part is that the entire city is completely enclosed within the ancient walls.
The Walls of Lucca
Not only can you walk around the walls surrounding Lucca, you can actually walk on top of the walls. If you were to hop on top of the walls, you’d be able to see the entire town while carefully navigating your way completely around the city and back to your starting point. In fact, the whole town tends to walk on top of the walls since they have been planted with pretty trees and grass making the walls a very extended park or walking trail of sorts around the city. There are more than four kilometers of walls complete with six gates and eleven bastions.
San Michele Church
Just one of the impressive church buildings in Lucca, San Michele Church is in the center of what used to be the Roman Forum. It’s a very lively square still today and as you walk through the square on the way to the church, you’ll spy any number of homes, shops and cafes. The church itself dates back to the 11th century and is build with marble in a Romanesque façade. St. Michael stands at the top of the church keeping watch over the people of the city.
Piazza dell’ Anfiteatro
Once a part of a romance amphitheater, Piazza dell’Anfiteatro is an oval shaped piazza that clearly holds remnants of what used to be. Around the edges of the piazza you can see the original ground buildings of the amphitheater as well as the outer ring of the early construction. The piazza has been a home to many shops and even lively festivals since the Middle Ages when construction in the area began in earnest.
At the top of the 130 stairs leading up the tower you’ll find amazing views of the city and the surrounding countryside. This 14th century tower is impressive and even the street leading up to the tower is awe inspiring in its clear state of preservation and buildings.