7. Livorno: Full-Day Private Shore Excursion to Pisa & Lucca
Meet your private driver/ guide at 08:00 as close as possible to your ship's arrival for the pleasant hour drive to the charming medieval city of Lucca. It is a city enclosed and protected through the centuries by an imposing 16th century wall, which is one of the best preserved Renaissance defenses in Europe. The wall has helped keep the city's original features and Roman street plan intact. You may enjoy starting off your day with a bike ride on top of the walls along the beautiful tree-lined promenade where you can peer down into the palazzi and piazzas of the old city or look up to views of the surrounding hills. Bike rental will be an additional (optional) cost paid on the day of your tour at 5 EUR per bike per hour.
Discover the city's Roman features with the Church of San Michele in Foro standing on the site of the original Roman forum. It was here that Giacomo Puccini began his musical career as a choir boy. Strolling along the lively shopping street of Via Fillungo, you will arrive at the Church of San Frediano with its 6th century origins. See the tomb of Saint Zita (1278), mentioned by Dante in the Inferno, whose mummified body can be seen through glass. Discover the unique shaped arena, Piazza Anfiteatro, constructed in the 1st century A.D. under Emperor Claudius with 54 arches and a cave able to hold as many as ten thousand spectators in 18 rows of seats. The base of the original amphitheater is now some 3 meters below the center, which was reconstructed in the 1800s as the town's marketplace. The Cathedral of San Martino houses the precious holy relic, the Volto Santo, a cedar wood crucifix said to be a true portrait of Jesus sculpted by Nicodemus, an eyewitness to the crucifixion. Also see the remarkable marble tomb of Ilaria del Caretto and Tintoretto's infamous 'Last Supper.'
The city is filled with artisans and tempting delicatessens offering Tuscan specialties, and Lucca is particularly renowned for its olive oil. Not to be missed are the underground cellars of Enoteca Vanni, offering a tempting selection of wines from all over Italy. Lunch will be at your own cost, and your driver can make recommendations and point you in the right direction. You may even have time to enjoy lunch at a local vineyard on the outskirts of town before taking the short drive to the 11th century powerful maritime republic of Pisa. Enjoy a driving tour of the city, which will lead you to the heart of one of the most important monuments in Italy, the breathtaking Piazza dei Miracoli with its Baptistry, the cathedral, Campo Santo Cemetery and of course, the Leaning Tower of Pisa. You will be free to explore some of the city on foot before meeting up with your driver for the return journey back to your ship in the port of Livorno with arrival at around 17:00.