Apologies to the Monkees for the title. Today was our 42nd wedding anniversary and along with J & F, we were setting off on a day trip to Lucca.
To get to Lucca was a relatively simple matter. There was only a 15 minute walk to Pisa Centrale Statione, and then a 31 minute train ride between Pisa and Lucca. We dawdled on our walk, as this was all new territory to us.
On arriving at the station, we saw the lineup to buy tickets at the wicket and opted to get ours from the ticket vending machine. Our train was eminent and my hurry was hampered by a bad case of fumble fingers and slow technology. By the time I figured my way through the process, the train had gone. But, not to worry, another would be along shortly. The return ticket price for the 31 minute journey on this local train was only about 8 Euro ($12 CAD). Such a deal. Now, can you teach Canadian rail companies your secrets, please?
Trenitalia is the name of the rail company created in 2010 when the EU wanted more similarities between European rail companies and services. They operate Regional trains, long distance trains and high speed trains, as well as some International routes.
Waiting in the station
Our train soon arrived. We boarded the train and took found seats. No reserved seating is possible on Regional trains, as they are all second class. You do have to keep your tickets handy for the conductors and the name on your ticket must match your photo I.D.
The train pulled out right on time and we slid slowly through the city, gradually picking up speed as we hit the outskirts. It was good to see new territory. There were several short stops along the way and we reached Lucca, right on time.
After our exploration of Lucca, we caught a late afternoon train back to Pisa. The process was simple, as we already had our return tickets. After all the walking we had done, it felt good to sit for a while.
Back at Pisa Centrale, there was still a lineup at the ticket wicket.
We have all heard of the well run on time train systems in Switzerland and Germany, but nobody seems to talk about the Italian rail system. We found them to be just as punctual as the German and Swiss trains. Tomorrow, our scheduled train travel to Cinque Terre would be much easier, as we now knew the process. Ciao!