We stumbled upon Lucca quite by accident seventeen years ago. Driving from Sienna to Milan at the end of our vacation we saw a sign saying “Lucca Centro Storico” and decided to stop there for lunch. Little did I know that this would be the start of a love affair with this lovely Tuscan town.
It took seven years for me to get back to Lucca. I was attending language school in Arezzo for a month and decided I needed a weekend getaway. While researching towns on the train line from Arezzo I remembered our lunch in Lucca and the walk on the wall. So off to Lucca I went.
Over the next few years we visited various towns across Italy, but my thoughts kept returning to Lucca. I wanted to share my love for the town and Panini Girl Tours in Lucca was born. Since 2011 I’ve been returning and exploring the town with old and new friends introducing them to my favorite foods and finds.
I love to start the day with a walk on the wall that surrounds the town. If you’re an early riser you can pretty much have the town to yourself. It’s the perfect time to wander through the streets taking time to snap a photo or two. Of course I have a special pasticceria that I frequent and before heading back to the apartment I stop in for a cappuccino and my favorite pastry-a budino di riso- a creamy rice filling encased in a buttery crust. What’s your favorite? I’ll bring one home for you!
At one point there were a hundred churches in town. Many are still standing, although most aren’t open on a regular basis. If you happen to walk by and see the door open, by all means go inside. You’ll be treated to incredible art no matter which church you visit. I’m happy to enter, take a seat and cherish the serenity while thinking about all the people who worshipped there over the years.
This year was no exception. Mornings began with pastries, cappuccinos and strolling on the wall. Lucca is filled with amazing small shops and we all certainly took advantage of what they had to offer, especially the locally crafted leather goods. A day trip to Florence is always on the agenda, but at the end of the day we were all happy to return to Lucca! Our evenings were filled with food and wine and lots of laughs around the table.
Until the next time we all have a week full of incredible memories of our time in Lucca. I’m already planning next May’s trip and looking forward to discovering more of the town and the countryside.
Get in touch at email@example.com with questions. I’ll be posting information about the tour soon. Panini Girl Food Tours
May 14, 2018 at 4:52 pm
Count me in Panini Girl!💗 What a lovely post about you’re history, past and present, with Lucca.:)
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May 14, 2018 at 6:32 pm
Bonnie-I already have some new adventures planned! Wish we could sneak back before then…
May 14, 2018 at 5:18 pm
Lucca looks beautiful!! Isn’t it crazy how a little stop for lunch can inspire so much? Thanks for this introduction to such a special town!
May 14, 2018 at 6:33 pm
Whiskey Nancies-I guess it was just meant to be! If you ever get to Italy you should definitely make time for Lucca.
May 14, 2018 at 5:34 pm
Three years ago we rented an apartment in Lucca for a month to celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary. We had been there previously while hiking the Cinque Terre. We treated our children and grand children to time in Lucca. The four grand children stayed an extra 10 days and flew home to Colorado with us. Two of the grand daughters turned 16 that July. This September we have rented an apartment in Prague for the month. A grand son will be spending the fall semester going to school there. We spent 3 days in Prague one summer . . . have assured our grand son we will not infringe on his friends, school, and activities. We hope to find a favorite coffee shop where people will know us. We’ll use public transportation and take overnight and day trips and explore lots of Prague.
May 14, 2018 at 6:30 pm
Judy-isn’t it such a wonderful town? I could see living g there or at least spending a few months each year. Have a great time in Prague-it’s on my list to visit some day!
May 14, 2018 at 7:44 pm
Your Response: I had to go to Google to find out what smh (shaking my head) stood for. It’s a new one for me.
May 14, 2018 at 7:55 pm
Judy-that was a typo! I meant to write “such”…
May 14, 2018 at 5:45 pm
I’m in! 🙂
May 14, 2018 at 6:33 pm
Cove Youth Band-I know you will just love Lucca!
May 14, 2018 at 6:36 pm
Lucca is the best and I am so lucky to be 100% Lucchese.
I am so glad others are also appreciating its beauty.
Thanks for such a nice post
May 14, 2018 at 6:48 pm
Rita-yea you are lucky to be Lucchese! My grandparents are from Campania and I love their town, but Lucca really holds a special place in my heart.
May 14, 2018 at 7:02 pm
While we chose to live elsewhere, a much smaller town, Lucca remains the city that always captures our hearts. We try to get there nearly every year. It has changed in 20 years, now full of franchised shops, but its charm- and a few local artisans remain. And some exceptional restaurants!
May 14, 2018 at 9:36 pm
Carol-yes I have certainly noticed the changes in the town but I’m still enamored by it. Thankfully there are still some of the artisans left.
May 14, 2018 at 8:08 pm
Lovely Lucca indeed. I feel lucky to be so close for several months a year.
May 14, 2018 at 9:38 pm
Debra-you certainly are lucky to be able to spend time in this part of Italy. I will always remember that you gave me an introduction to Lucca with a walking tour of your favorite spots.
May 14, 2018 at 11:17 pm
Change of email:
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May 15, 2018 at 4:43 am
Looks like you had a great time! I spent a week at an art retreat in November a half hour out of Lucca. It was pouring rain every time we went in to Lucca but it was still amazing! Ciao, Cristina
May 15, 2018 at 9:45 pm
I was just able to experience last years trip all over again, thank you! Ohhhh, wish I was there now.
May 25, 2018 at 4:10 pm
It certainly is a jewel of a town – that many churches, who knew!