The Last Eurail Travel Day via Pisa
Day XXII: Trains & Leaning Tower of Pisa
We got up early and reached Rialto Market Station from where we caught the public ferry to St. Lucia Train Station. As it was 6:00 AM, we couldn’t find anyone at the station therefore we boarded the ferry and then took a ticket on the the Ferry.
It was our last Eurail travel day and the most hectic one where had to catch four trains. We boarded our first train from St. Lucia to Florence. From Florence, we would be visiting Pisa and then heading towards the last destination of the euro trip, Rome. So instead of unnecessarily carrying the luggage, we dropped our luggage at the luggage counter in Florence and headed to Pisa. Important information: In Italy, we observed, they would charge 6 € for the first 4 hours & 1€ for every additional hour.
We got into our next train, the train was supposed to start at 10:50 AM but even at 11:20 AM, it didn't start. In a few minutes, we came to know that the train in which we were sitting got cancelled and the alternative train would leave in 10 minutes from Platform # 2. We started running with the rest of the tourists to platform #2. It reminded me of the way we used to catch a train in India. Thank god, this train didn't get cancelled and we reached Pisa Centraal by 1:00 PM. While we were on a train, we figured out the way to reach the leaning tower of Pisa. So after getting off the train, we went to the bus stop and bought four tickets, two to reach the leaning tower of Pisa and the remaining two for the return journey. each cost us 1.5€. We caught a bus and reached there in 10 minutes.
I was amazed as soon as I saw the first glimpse of the leaning tower of Pisa. I could see why it was called the leaning tower. Only god might know whether they deliberately built an inclined tower or due to some defect it became an inclined tower 😜. But it looked beautiful!
There were two variants of tickets available. One would cost 50€ and grant entry to everything i.e. the cathedral, museums and the leaning tower of Pisa while the other cost 20€ and grant entry to the summit of the leaning tower of Pisa. Because of the limited time on our hands, we opted for the second option, entry to the summit of the leaning tower of Pisa. Also, you had to visit it to the preassigned slots, ours was a 2:00 PM slot. Also, one had to put all the luggage in the clock room. As we had 30-odd minutes on our hands, We tried out a few poses with the tower. But we wanted something unique, suddenly, I saw an ice cream shop so I bought a gelato and took the below picture. A leaning tower of Pisa-flavoured gelato 😉 wasn't it cool?
At 1:45 PM we stood in the Queue. After completing the basic security checks (the kind of checks we used to have in malls in India) and entered the tower. We climbed 250-plus steps. While climbing, I felt my body leaning towards the walls. Also, the surface of the marble steps became uneven because of countless people climbing the tower over the centuries. The more we were reaching towards the top, the narrower the courtyards became. It was so narrow towards the top that only one person could climb at a time. throughout the journey, our body was leaning 😜 Indeed, everything in Pisa was leaning!
The Leaning Tower of Pisa was one of the tallest monuments in Pisa and hence, offered a pleasant panoramic view of the City. We circled the top of the Tower and enjoyed a 360° view. I could see the gorgeously looking Football stadium of Pisa FC. We also saw huge bells on all sides of the Tower at the summit. They might be used to inform the people of the city about the upcoming threats in ancient times. We sat there in shadow for a while before proceeding towards the exit.
After conquering the leaning tower of Pisa Summit, we went shopping and bought fridge magnets as a souvenir and headed towards the Bus stop from where we boarded the next bus to Pisa Centraal station. One incident happened while we were on a bus. A tourist boarded the bus without the tickets and to his bad luck, the officer entered the bus and asked for the scanned ticket. As he wasn't carrying any, he was charged with a 1500€ fine.
We boarded our third train of the trip and reached Florence by 4:30 PM. There was more than an hour left for our next train. therefore after taking luggage from the cloakroom, we went to MacD and had delicious chicken burgers.
Time to catch the last train of the ongoing euro adventure and it was the fastest train in Europe, Frecciarossa 1000. My eye was on the speedo metre that they were displaying on the screen. we were constantly travelling at 250 miles/hour! At such a high speed, the train was shockingly stable, and the drink that I had put on a table wasn't shaking at all. Incredible! The 1.5 hours of the fascinating journey came to an end at Roma Termini.
We came out of the station and bought 48 hours unlimited bus travel pass and took Bus # 70 and reached the nearest bus stop from where we walked to our Airbnb. While I was on the bus, I realized how beautiful and ancient Roma was but more on that would come later.
The speciality of this Airbnb was its location. A heaven for the party animals. While walking towards our Airbnb, we had seen countless bars. I would say every small shop on that street was a bar or restaurant. At 8:00 PM we could barely able to walk, god knows what would have happened at midnight.
The last but the best part of Europe and Italy leg is here 👉 Father of All Heritage Sights, Rome