Saturday, May 16, 2015

The Leaning Tower of Pisa

Pisa is a small town in central Italy, most renowned for its leaning tower, a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Many tourists just stop by for a few hours to snap a shot with the tower, before continuing on to other locales. We were in Pisa for a night and half a day, with just enough time to wander around the town and see the tower. 

It's a shame that most people don't spend more time in Pisa. It's a perfectly lovely place, with tall colorful buildings bordering lively streets. The area near the river that runs through the town is especially beautiful.

There was a bountiful open air fruit market off of the main street...

...and lots of little squares filled with colorful buildings.

The Leaning Tower is located in Cathedral Square. It was built in the 12th century, and started leaning over because of unstable ground on one side of its foundation. It has since been stabilized, and now is a major attraction and the background of many tourists' photos.

The tower itself is a little more than 50 meters tall. If you want to get to the top, you have to buy a ticket, but I think most people just want to get a few pictures of it from the ground.

From up close, the base doesn't look very tilted, but I'm sure that the slight angle of tilt really becomes magnified and more noticeable because the tower is so tall.

I had to take this requisite photo of holding up the tower. Walking around the square was really amusing because there are so many tourists trying to take unique and funny photos with the tower in the background. A lot of people were holding really awkward poses and laughing.

Pisa also has the oldest botanic gardens in Europe! I'm sure that one could spend a whole day here and look around, but unfortunately we had an early afternoon train to catch so we had to leave soon after visiting the tower. 

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