After leaving the hustle and bustle of the busy port town of Genoa, Italy, we found ourselves in Lucca where we had a very memorable and enjoyable stay. Intact Renaissance-era city walls surround Lucca, we learned that a coliseum stood where Lucca is now and the walls are from the original structure. The population of Lucca is approximately 87,000.
Lucca oozed of comfort. Our AirBnB hosts picked us up at the train station, which was conveniently just outside of Lucca’s walls. We drove around to the opposite side to another entrance, which was closer to our apartment. We parked and then walked the remaining way “into” Lucca, as automobiles are not allowed in many areas within the city walls. We heard this before we arrived and that we would see a lot of bicycles rolling about, which there was…but, we were quite surprised at the amount of cars we did see and had to get out of the way of – yikes!
We spent hours meandering the rough cobblestone streets, passing by all the different storefronts, which ranged from a craft brew supplier to high-end clothing retailers. Our focus as usual was the local markets, Butcher shops and wine stores and restaurants – yes, we certainly do have our priorities straight!
The meals we experienced in Lucca were all fabulous, we really felt we received great value for the money. Items such as Wild Boar Pasta, Sliced Steak with Mountains of Truffles on top, Wild Boar Stew, Risotto with Smoked Bacon and Saffron and “the” best wood fired Pizza we have ever had. When it came out of the oven, huge slices of thin cured ham were cut in front of us and draped over the entire surface of the pie. We ordered a large thinking how great it would be to have some leftover pizza for our train ride the next day but that didn’t happen because going back for ‘one more slice’ five times results in an empty pizza box!
Lucca was certainly one of our favorite destinations in Italy and we feel it is worthy to be placed on anyones traveling list if you’re visiting Italy. Although we did not go, Pisa is a short 30 minute train ride away so a fun day trip can be had while visiting Lucca…next time for us!