Pisa is the perfect weekend city break, with delicious food, beautiful weather and incredible architecture!
It’s hard to believe that my trip to Pisa was almost 5 months ago – and here I am sitting down to write it in early September! Note to self: I MUST write down notes when I’m on holiday AND put a post together before I forget all the little details!
Being the foodie lover that I am, I blogged about what to eat and drink in Pisa at a much earlier date, so all the details were fresh in my mind. I’m missing the crunchy garlic bread, soft pasta and creamy gelato like mad. I would totally head back to Italy in a heartbeat if I could!
Jade and I went to Pisa during the first May bank holiday, and enjoyed two and a half days of walking, exploring, eating and tanning!
We landed in Pisa around lunch time and headed straight to our hotel, Allegroitalia Tower Plaza, to freshen up and unpack all of our clothes. We explored the hotel (including the AMAZING roof top with an incredible picturesque view) and then ventured out to buy snacks to keep us going over the weekend. We stocked up on water, sickly-sweet juices, paprika lays and kinder bueno rolls – doesn’t holiday food just tastes SO much better than normal food?
Day trip to Florence
On the first full day, we took a taxi to Pisa Central Station to buy return tickets to Florence. The train journey took around 2 hours, weaving in and out of the beautiful rolling Italian countryside. The triple decker trains (TRIPLE DECKER!!) are air conditioned and super comfortable, which makes the whole experience relaxing and more enjoyable. Luckily, we picked up a handy pocket guide to Pisa and Florence whilst we were in the airport, so we relied heavily on these for the trip!
Jade and I walked over 29,000 steps in 6 hours, exploring the beautiful city and terracotta buildings, climbing up to Piazale Michelangelo to take in the breathtaking views, gorging on spicy pizza and cool gelato, walking past Florence cathedral and strolling over the iconic David bridge.
It was so good in fact, that it totally deserves its own post. So keep you eyes peeled for my 6 hours in Florence post!
Visit the Tuttomondo painting in Pisa
The Tuttomondo painting was a highly recommended place to visit on the map of Pisa, so when we were walking back to our hotel one evening, we made an effort to the painting. Keith Haring, a young American artist who designed and painted the Tuttomondo, quickly became famous for the colourful, bold paintings and sketches displayed on billboards and walls. Tuttomondo, a 180sq wall of colourful characters and drawings, was created in 1989 for people across the world to enjoy. The bold, vibrant colours represent different aspects of peace in the world. The 30-figures in the mural evoke Haring’s vitality, energy and creativeness, which allowed him to create something to rememberable before his death from AIDS just months later.
There’s a little gift shop opposite, but it’s lovely to just sit beside the view and look at it. You can’t miss it, it’s pretty tall and colourful – but worth a visit!
The Leaning Tower of Pisa
Where to start with this incredible piece of architecture!
The Tower of Pisa is noted as one of the most remarkable structures from medieval Europe, standing at 60 metres tall and until 1990, was leaning at a 10 degree angle. Pisa Tower is one of four buildings that make up the cathedral complex, where it is nestled in between the cathedral, white marble pavement, the baptistery and the dome.
With 207 columns ranged around eight stories, the Tower of Pisa began construction in 1173 and continued for 200 years through the series of wars. The white marble tour holds a chamber for bells that ring out over Pisa. To marble stone spiral staircase will take you to the top of the tower, with different viewpoints to stop off and take photos – and catch your breath!
We booked tickets first thing in the morning and managed to grab an early afternoon slot to walk up the tower. You aren’t allowed to take bags up (the steps get super steep and narrow near the top!) so we headed to the free cloakroom to drop our coats and bags off. Once you step into the tower, everything’s on a slant so it feels slightly disorientating, but you begin the climb on the steep marble steps by following single file. As you progress up the tower, the steps become shorter, steeper and narrower. Once you’ve done the 251 steps though, you are greeted with the most incredible view.
The weather was super beautiful; blue skies, beaming sunshine and soft whispy clouds. For miles around, you could see rolling countryside, terracotta roof tiles and rows and rows of beautiful Italian buildings. We also managed to climb the tower in time to hear the bells chime out over Pisa.
Photos just don’t do the tower justice – you need to see it to believe it!
Hire bikes to ride around Pisa
We had some time to kill before heading up the Leaning Tower of Pisa, so we wondered down the streets and had breakfast, and stumbled on a row of bikes and a tour guide explaining the route to other tourists. We finished our coffee and headed over, and within 15 minutes we’d booked our own bike to take on a tour around the streets of Pisa!
We payed €10 for an hour’s trip and Jade and I took it in turns to navigate the roads and cobbled streets. It was a great way to see Pisa and the river Arno, albeit a little scary cycling on the wrong side of the road!
Who doesn’t love a tacky souvenir? We walked around the markets held just outside the square, and looked at all the key rings, glasses, t-shirts and tops! The heat was blazing, even in May, but I picked up some tacky souvenirs and a Pisa plate. I’ve started collecting plates from places that I go on holiday, and Mum puts them up in the kitchen along the picture rail in the kitchen!
Pisa was a fantastic short City break, and I totally recommend a weekend there! The food, weather and people were incredible, I’m just so excited to visit Italy again.
Stay posted for my 6 Hours in Florence post – it’s a goodun’!
I’ve never been to Pisa but I really want to and take one of them cheesy pics leaning against the tower haha sounds like you girls had lots of fun! I’m going to Paris for 72 hours and I hope to do as much as you girls have done on this trip!
Pam xo/ Pam Scalfi♥
Haha we took those cheesy photos as well, we just HAD to!! Ahh that’s so exciting, I hope you have a great time! x
I’ve never thought too much about going to Pisa but this definitely put it on my list – would be so cool to go to the tower and the bike sounds fun, I love stuff like that! Florence has been on my list for a while so I’m looking forward to seeing your post on that 🙂 xxx
Sophie | Sophar So Good
We found it because it was a cheap weekend break, plus we’d always wanted to visit Italy! It certainly didn’t disappoint 😀 Florence was super beautiful, I’ll be sure to link you it when it’s live! x
It looks fantastic, I enjoyed so much reading about your trip and seeing the pictures.
If I don’t write about something I’ve visited soon after my visit I forget too, so I try to post in a week or so. 🙂
Yay, I’m glad you enjoyed reading it! Haha yes that’s my issue – I will definitely learn to blog soon after an event!!
I really want to visit Italy, Pisa looked beautiful. The food is calling my name too!
https://amyevans.co.uk – Amy
Pisa is a stunning place – and the food is incredible, too! 🙂
I flew into Pisa when I visited Florence but never had time to see the city! I’d love to go back and will keep these in mind!
Yay, I’m excited for you to take a trip there! 🙂
It looks like such a beautiful place. I’d love to visit xx
Gemma • Gemma Etc. ❤️
It’s absolutely stunning there Gemma, I’d 100% recommend a visit there! 🙂
I actually did this the other way around- Florence and day trip in Pisa haha. These beautiful photos bring me back so many memories, I loved Tuscany so much!
I’m currently hosting a giveaway on my blog, hoping you can check it out,
Ahhh I see! We were going to do it the other way as well but it was SO expensive to fly to Florence! I’m so happy my photos brought back good memories! 😀
Loving that artsy Tuttomondo backdrop! Looks like a fab trip xx
It was a super cool memorial! 🙂
Ahhhh I’ve never been to Pisa but it looks so cool! I always find it so funny when people pose as if they’re holding up or pushing the tower, and then you have like 20 people doing it at the same time!
Lovely post, and I’m lowkey obsessed with your outfits – you look fab!!!
Haha we did this!!! We got there super early on Sunday to make sure we could take a photo with very little people in haha! 😀 awwww that’s so so kind of you – thank you!!
Ah, this is incredible! I’ve just come back from Milan and now really want to travel to other places in Italy! These photos are gorgeous! xo
Hanney | http://www.blogabouthanney.com
I would LOVE to go to Milan one day! 🙂 thank you so much!
This looks like so much fun! Weren’t you EXHAUSTED after walking that much? That bridge with the houses on it is so cool!
It was an amazing trip and we were super lucky with the weather! 🙂 haha yes, we were certainly tired out!!
I’ve been thinking about going back to Italy, and this post has persuaded me! Riding around on that bike looks so much fun! You must have been able to see so much more of the city! The tower looks incredible, but I’d be far too scared to go up it! It looks like you had a wonderful time, and you managed to fit so much in such a small amount of time, too!
Yay I’m so happy you enjoyed reading it! 😀 Honestly the tower was absolutely fine – didn’t feel uneasy or scary or anything! We definitely crammed a lot in, but it was super enjoyable!
I love the bike ride! Looks like a fun way to go around the city!
Sheena | http://www.sheenalovessunsets.com
It was so much fun, a great way of exploring a new city! 😀
This is the perfect post for us right now. We’re planning out Italy trip for next year and Florence is on the list but we were wondering about going to Pisa and we are convinced!
Jessica & James | http://www.foodandbaker.co.uk / http://www.foodandbakertravels.co.uk
Pisa is SO beautiful – I’d totally recommend a visit there! <3