Top-Rated Tourist Attractions in Lucca
The provincial capital of Lucca lies in the northwest of Tuscany, on the left bank of the River Sergio, almost 25km/16mi inland from Viareggio. The Alpi Apuane are to the north of the town, the Monti Pisani to the south. Lucca was the home of the sculptor Matteo Civitali (1436-1501) and the composer Giacomo Puccini (1858-1924), whose birthplace is now a museum and open to the public.
The ancient Lucca, which became a Roman colony in 177 B.C., belonged after the fall of the Roman Empire to the Ostrogoths, the Lombards and the Franks in turn. It later became capital of the marquisate of Tuscia, and subsequently fell into the hands of the Scaligers and Florence. In 1369 the town purchased its freedom from Charles IV for 100,000 gold florins, and thereafter it remained independent until the French invasion in 1799. In 1805 Napoleon gave Lucca together with Massa-Carrara as a principality to his sister Elisa Bacciocchi. In 1817 it passed to the house of Bourbon-Parma as a duchy, and in 1847 was ceded to Tuscany. Lucca played a prominent part in the history of architecture from the Lombard period onwards; but its early medieval churches, partly built with ancient material, were altered and restored in the 12th century.
The main feature of the town are the walls that have remained intact. The walls encircle the old town of Lucca and were used at one time as a pedestrian promenade as well as for racing cars.
Palazzo della Provincia