• Enlarge text
Pisa

Pisa

Home to the world’s most beloved architectural accident, the leaning tower is a must-see on the bucket list of many of Pisa’s visitors, yet to ignore the rest of this fascinating town would be a sorry mistake. Also home to one of Italy’s most prestigious universities, Pisa is a thriving community, rich in both culture and entertainment. Thanks to a bustling student population a sense of energy and excitement is always in the air and local stores and restaurants offer the ideal combination between good value and luxury indulgence.

The lovely town of Pisa has a good mix of upper-end and middle-range accommodation, though it’s less well served with budget options. Places such as Hotel Relais Dell'Orologio (Via della Faggiola 12-14), in a 14th-century mansion, and elegant four-star Hotel Bologna (Via Giuseppe Mazzini 57), with plenty of old-fashioned charm and character, are at the top of the range. Among the less expensive options are three-star Hotel Villa Kinzica (Pizza Arcivescovado 2), close to the Leaning Tower, and Hotel Roma (Via Bonanno Pisano 111), which has simple rooms, some of which have views of the famous tower.

Corso Italia is Pisa’s main shopping street, with clothes and homewares shops, as well as reliable department store Coin (Corso Italia 118), while Borgo Stretto is the city’s most elegant drag, and has some more upmarket accessory and clothes shops. For some of the world’s best chocolate, try De Bondt (Lungarno Pacinotti 5), the boutique of master chocolatier Paul De Bondt, while for typical gastronomic delicacies, head to Piazza delle Vettovaglie, where you can buy locally produced pecorino, cold cuts and wine. On the second weekend of each month, there’s a renowned antique market in Via dei Mille, Via Santa Maria and Piazza dei Cavalieri.

As a university town, Pisa has plenty of excellent budget restaurants, as well as more upmarket choices, which are largely located in the historic centre. Osteria dei Cavalieri (Via San Frediano 16) offers scrumptious, sophisticated cuisine in an chic setting, just off the main drag. Most of the best-value restaurants in Pisa are clustered around the university, including Ristoro al Vecchio Teatro (Via Collegio Ricci 12), which serves traditional Pisan cooking with a particular focus on seafood. For a cheaper eat, try Il Montino (Vicolo Monte 1), which is a much-loved pizzeria, famous for its cecina (chickpea pizza).

La Regata delle Antiche Repubbliche Marinare
May/June
Italy's four main ancient maritime republics (Amalfi, Pisa, Genoa and Venice) take turns to hold this historic 2,000m boat race between beautiful, colourful crafts that are modelled on those of the 12th century, while festivities and parades take place in the city.


La Luminara di San Ranieri
16 June
Pisans honour their patron saint, San Ranieri, by lining the "lungarni" – the streets along the Arno River – with candles, with more candles floating on the river. All streetlights are turned off, and there are fireworks and street parties.


La Regata di San Ranieri
17 June
To honour Pisa’s patron saint, the four historical quarters of Pisa (Santa Maria in blue, San Francesco in yellow, Sant’Antonio in green and San Martino in red) compete in the spectacularly colourful, historical Regatta of Saint Ranieri.


Gioco del Ponte
June
Dating from 1568, this traditional celebration held on the last Sunday in June sees battles between teams from the north and south banks, including the pushing of a seven-tone carriage across the Ponte di Mezzo, Pisa's old Roman bridge.


Anima Mundi
September/October
A festival of sacred music, with exquisite performances at atmospheric venues throughout Pisa, including a recital in Miracle Square.

ESSENTIALS

Language
Italian
Currency
Euro
Time zone
GMT +1
Flight time
2 Hours 30
Holiday type
City Break , Sightseeing , Summer Sun

WEATHER

01/11/14
Partly cloudy skies
Partly cloudy skies
8°C
min
21°C
max
02/11/14
Sunny skies
Sunny skies
10°C
min
22°C
max
03/11/14
Partly cloudy skies
Partly cloudy skies
12°C
min
20°C
max
04/11/14
Patchy rain possible
Patchy rain possible
12°C
min
20°C
max
05/11/14
Moderate rain at times
Moderate rain at times
13°C
min
17°C
max
06/11/14
Patchy light rain
Patchy light rain
12°C
min
17°C
max
07/11/14
Sunny skies
Sunny skies
13°C
min
20°C
max
Jan
11°C max
3°C min
Feb
13°C max
3°C min
Mar
15°C max
6°C min
Apr
18°C max
8°C min
May
21°C max
11°C min
Jun
27°C max
15°C min
Jul
29°C max
17°C min
Aug
30°C max
18°C min
Sep
26°C max
15°C min
Oct
21°C max
12°C min
Nov
15°C max
7°C min
Dec
12°C max
4°C min

AIRLINES

TODAY'S WEATHER

Partly cloudy skies 21°C
8°C
min
21°C
max
47%
huimidity