This is a guest post authored by Mr. Roland Millward. He is well travelled and host a travel blog. I would love one day to travel to Pisa, but until then…Roland gives us a descriptive visual of this beautiful place and amazing structure. Love always, Chrissy
Italy is famous for its beautiful countryside, lakes, history and architecture including the Leaning Tower of Pisa. In 2016 I was privileged to go on a tour of Italy which included a stop in Pisa with a visit, of course, to the famous Leaning Tower.
The history of this tower is intriguing and I would like to tell you about my visit.
Work started on building the tower in August 1173 and it was completed in 1399. At completion, it was originally 60m high but today it is 56.67m on the highest side and 55.86m on the lowest side, with getting close to 300 steps to get to the top. It was quite early during the build that the tower began to lean.
The tower is for the bell to summon the worshippers to the Basilica. There is also a Baptistery forming a row of buildings, the Baptistery first, then the Basilica and headed up by the Tower of Pisa. Unbaptised Catholics were not allowed into the Basilica and hence the Baptistery is a separate building.
As the tower was built there were attempts to correct the leaning by adding structures at another angle. This means that if the leaning tower today was stood upright it would still be wonky as a result. If you look carefully at the tower you can see the change of angles as the tower was built. The reason for the lean of course is the soft ground and it has also affected the Baptistery and Basilica but due to the width of these buildings, this is not really noticeable.
The Leaning Tower of Pisa is now Stable
There have been many attempts to prevent the Tower of Pisa from falling down. There is a good reason not to straighten it – the tourists would not come in the same numbers! The most recent work has finally stabilised the tower and it now sits leaning at about 17 feet (5.18m) off the perpendicular. This final work was completed in 2001 and the tower is no longer moving towards disaster. You can pay to climb the steps to the top of the tower but make sure that you are fairly fit and be prepared for a strange feeling due to the lean. If you wish to climb the tower and it is advisable to book tickets in advance to avoid disappointment on the day. Numbers are limited.
Standing at the base of the leaning tower and looking upwards made me feel quite dizzy and others standing next to me felt the same way. It must be our brains trying to straighten the tower coupled with the fact that beautiful white cumulus clouds were moving across the sky. It was a weird feeling!
Interestingly, the word Pisa comes from an ancient Greek word meaning ‘marshy land’, which perhaps in hindsight, should have given the early engineers and architects a clue about how good and deep the foundations should have been.
The City of Pisa – More than the Leaning Tower
Pisa has more to offer than the leaning tower. It is a famed also for its university, which is the 19th oldest in the existence in the world, founded in 1343. The students form a large part of the population of the City of Pisa. The University of Pisa is a public research university and has students of the highest calibre. (see the photo below)
There are some beautiful buildings in Pisa and it’s well worth exploring away from the area that the leaning tower is located. Many of the tourists turn up on coaches, look at the tower and leave so even a few hundred yards away it can be much quieter to explore and take in the everyday Pisa. If you ever do get the opportunity to visit the Leaning Tower of Pisa make sure you allow enough time to take in much more of this interesting and beautiful Italian city.
I hope that you have enjoyed a glimpse into a visit to The Leaning Tower of Pisa. This post has been written by guest blogger Roland Millward from England. You can read his blog here at Roland Millward – Blogging about Life, People & Travel.
[…] next day was a trip to Pisa and of course, it’s a must to stand next to the famous Leaning Tower of Pisa. It can be quite disorienting to stand next to that tower looking upwards as it seems my brain kept […]
It’s a wonderful place! I have to visit it, I’ll probably be able to do it in few years 🙂
I hope that you are able to go. I am sure that you will enjoy visiting Italy.
I’ve always wanted to go and take one of those goofy pictures that everyone takes. You know the one! 😉
Yes Patranila! Me too 👍 I hope you make it and hold up the Leaning Tower of Pisa in a photo when you get there!
I hope that one day soon you will be able to do that. Thanks for your comment.
I am jealous! The tower is on my bucket list! Your photos are so nice and It is amazing how this building is!
Thanks for your kind words. I hope that you can make the trip one day soon.
Girl, I’m with you on this one. I’m all kinds of jealous! 😉
I visited Pisa myself two years back and we found the Field of Miracles to be spectacular inspite of the heaving crowds. Although I did read up about it, I never knew that Pisa meant marshy land which makes so much sense.. Informative post !
Thanks for your comment Gayathri. It is a wonderful place to visit.
I didn’t know that they allow people to climb the Leaning Tower of Pisa. I’m glad that they have stabilized it while maintaining its historical lean.
Yes for those with the stamina and a willingness to pay. It has been a major work in construction and at last successful.
Somewhere I’ve always wanted to visit but I never think of booking pisa or more specifically italy when I look at holidays. I would love to see this in person one day x
Italy is a beautiful country and there is so much to see.
My husband is half Italian and he and I would love to go to Italy!! When I lived in England I wanted to go so bad – so this is a future trip the husband and I would love to do! So many amazing things to see there and the Leaning Tower of Pisa is amazing!
Being from England I bet you have many stories to share as well about travels there. I hope you and your husband make it by the Leaning Tower one day.
You definitely must go!
Super cool! I love those photos! What an awesome experience and memories you will treasure.
Roland is a good photographer! 😀
Thank you Amber. It was an awesome experience and something to treasure forever. Your comment is much appreciated.
It would be amazing to visit Pisa some day. The Leaning Tower of Pisa has always been a place I have always wanted to see since I was a young child. I find the history of the tower very interesting and something I didn’t know about. Thanks for sharing this awesome information.
I’ve always wanyed to visit the leaning tower of Pisa, it is totally on my bucket list. Hopefully one day! This was a really interesting read.
I’m rooting for you! I hope you make it out to see it.
Do make sure that you go! Thanks for your comment.
Wow such beautiful captures of the leaning tower of Pisa. I would love to see it in person one day!
Thanks for your comment. I do hope you visit Pisa one day.
I have always wanted to see the famous leaning tower of Pisa. After reading this guest post now I got even more excited to see it
Keep that excitement in your heart 😀
I hope that you get to see it.
I loved the leaning tower! all the people taking the funny pushing the tower over pose hahaha
Thanks for commenting.
I would absolutely love to visit the Leaning Tower of Pisa one day!! I can understand why they would like it to stay leaning- like you said, it brings in a lot of tourists! Thanks for the post/pics.
I agree. I can’t believe they didn’t tear it down & start over once they realized its instability.
I would love to see this in person! I would love it even more if we waited to travel there until our daughters could enjoy the experience too. They are now two and eight years old so we are getting closer to that dream vacation!
It will be a great place to go when they are older. Thanks for your comment.
Yes you are 😉
I hope I get the chance to take my family to the Leaning Tower of Pisa. That looks like an awesome place to visit and to learn about.
I hope that you can visit. You will live it.
😀 me too
The leaning tower of Pisa is on my bucket list and I love the snaps and experience you captured here
Please share with me if you get to go!
I was actually expecting THAT pose mentioned in the previous comments, LOL. It’s refreshing to read a post talking about Pisa’s history as well as seeing other sites near it.
Break the tradition! Thanks for your comment.
I love history and like how Roland educated us all.
Y’all travel blogger makes me want to travel… I really hate leaving my house, but seeing all of these🙌 I can’t wait to be on vac
Go for it!
It’s easy once you get going. It becomes second nature and suddenly, you can’t get enough of it.
I can imagine that Pisa would have many other great things to recommend it. It would just be eclipsed by that incredible piece of architecture. It’s great that some of the issues have been fixed now though.
You imagine well. Pisa is a fascinating city plus it is also the name of the whole region and is rich in history.
I never knew the history of the Leaning Tower Of Pisa. Just that it was leaning. So this is super informative. I would be tempted to climb up if I were there, but it sounds like an adventure. I imagine the feeling of leaning is really strange as you get high up.
I love history and this city is full of it ☺
It’s a fascinating place and the whole region has a wonderful history. Thanks for your comment.
This is so amazing! I have never been to Italy before!!! And when I do — I know exactly where I am going to visit FIRST!
Debbie | http://www.tothineownstylebetrue.com
Me too 😊
You will love it!
My daughter visited when she was in Italy. She loved it and got a great picture where it looks like she is holding the tower up with her finger!
Now THAT is cool!
It seems everyone there imitates that pose! I wonder how many photos there are? Thanks for your comment.
I would love to get some photos with my family in front of the Leaning Tower of Pisa someday! What an awesome description of the location and such awesome photos!
I hope that your wish comes true. Thanks for your lovely comment.
I agree! Roland has a great eye for photo ops.
Oh wow! You must have had a wonderful and amazing trip there. I’ve always wondered what it looked like, other than movies. Thank you for the wonderful photo. I really much enjoyed it!
It was a wonderful place to visit and see it close up. Italy is an amazing country to visit.
I am hoping to visit one day too.
[…] happened in her life. I have recently been privileged to write a guest post for Chrissy, ‘A Visit to the Leaning Tower of Pisa’ Likewise Chrissy has written for my blog, ‘Galveston Island – not just brown […]
Nice shots! Been there many times when I lived in Genoa. Thank you for bringing back the memories! Marcus
Thanks. Roland has some beautiful pictures. I hope one day to see it myself too.
Thank you. I would certainly like to visit again and spend more time there.
Sounds like an awesome time!
How have you been Brad? I hope to see Pisa one day too 🙂
Pisa and Italy generally is a great place to visit. I can highly recommend it.