Pisa is so much beyond the Leaning Tower and Piazza dei Miracoli – the whole province of Pisa (beyond the city itself) offers interesting summer activities.
Here are five ideas.
San Rossore and Massaciuccoli Park
The San Rossore and Massaciuccoli Park is really close to the Leaning tower. If you enjoy walking it can be reached by foot, otherwise by car or by train (the closest train station is Pisa San Rossore) and from there, you can reach the park only by taxi. San Rossore is known for its hippodrome where racecourses take place, the restaurants with typical Tuscan foods and the boundless green park where you can do all kinds of sports, or simply rest under the big pine trees! In San Rossore you’ll see many species of Tuscan flora and fauna included the “Mucco pisano”, a large and local cow!
Pisan coast: Marina di Pisa and Tirrenia
Do you like sandy beaches, dancing and having a drink with friends? The Pisan coast is ideal for these things! The long, sandy beaches here can be accessed free, or you can pay to go to a full service bathing establishment. There are lots of pubs and clubs. It is pleasant to spend Saturday evenings having an aperitivo with friends in one of these pubs, maybe looking at the sunset while sitting on the beach with your feet in the sand… so romantic!
San Miniato and Volterra
Two jewels not to be missed in Tuscany are located in the Pisan hills: San Miniato and Volterra. The medieval village of San Miniato preserves a historic centre set on the hilltop with the Cathedral, the Episcopal Palace, the Municipal Palace and the Tower Fortress dominating all the surrounding Arno, Era and Egola valleys. It is famous for its truffles – at the truffle fair in November, truffle hunters, chefs, experts and journalists come to taste the local gastronomic speciality, but it is also worth a visit in the summer.
If you want to discover the real province of Pisa, head for the Pisan hills with its artistic, cultural and gastronomic treasures. For example, take a tour by bike or drive around by car and have a rest in Santallago, few kilometres from Calci (see below) where there are BBQ grills for a picnic. The region’s most well-known gastronomic products include olive oil (try it on bread!), honey and wine.
Calci is 10 kilometres away from Pisa and is known for its Certosa, a Baroque-style monastery founded in 1366. The Certosa di Calci is a monumental complex used by Carthusian monks until the 1970s. Now, it is open to tourists who can visit the large internal courtyard surrounded by buildings, the cellars, the orchards and the wing of the complex that hosts the Natural History Museum of Pisa University, where important paleontological and zoological collections are preserved.
These are just some of the most popular places in Pisa province… can you recommend others?