We took the train to Florence but rather than explore the city, we took off to Pisa for the day for the mandatory tourist pics with the infamous tower.
Pisa is about an hour from Florence and only 8 euros (that’s quite a bargain here!). The train station is at one end of the town while the major tourist attraction is at the other, but the walk from one end to other only took us 15 mins. It was also a beautiful day to take in this small town which has a river running through it, dividing south and north.
We knew we were getting closer to the touristic center when random African men started coming up to us with watches and bags. This seems to be the trend in Italy. We’ve also been told though that although they are selling these items as if they are fake, sometimes they can be real because they are stolen goods. There are random police raids all the time on the streets and the men are prepared to quickly run. Often times they place the bags on sheets on the ground so they can easily pick them all up, sling them over their shoulder and take off before getting a ticket. Clearly these raids aren’t proven to be effective.
The main attraction of Pisa is the leaning tower which is located among green pastures and a cathedral. Once up close the tower doesn’t seem to be as lopsided. We had lots of fun trying to pose for pics and opted to go into the tower due to cheap budget. We browsed the market after wards which so far seems to be the same everywhere – lots of kitschy touristic crap.
The best meal we’ve had so far has been in Pisa, at a small restaurant where the pasta was incredible and less than 5 euros. Of course, we were in heaven. I also tried the Italian Martini drink which is very different from a real martini. A slice of fruit is placed in the drink which adds a lot of flavour.
Pisa is quite small and is well-known for it’s university (for the locals). It’s known to the world of course because of its tower. It’s worth it for the day but it’s not a place to come and stay.