Pescia is a small town located in Tuscany, in the province of Pistoia. The town is located between Florence and Lucca and is spread out over an area of 79 sq. km. Pescia is mainly a floricultural and agricultural town and has recently gained much popularity as a tourist destination due to its scenic locations and its many beautiful hills that are covered by olive trees, flowers and citrus fruit trees.
One of the most attractive features of the town is that it has still managed to retain its medieval features. According to archeologists and scholars the Lombards were the first people to set up a settlement close to the river bank.
Attractions in Pescia
Duomo Di Santa Maria Assunta
The cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta is one of the most important religious places in Pescia. The cathedral was built around the 17th century at the location of an earlier parish. The cathedral has been beautifully restored through the centuries and much of its original façade still exists. The architecture is noteworthy since it is quite typical to Tuscany. The most noteworthy feature in the cathedral is the 14th century belfry that has gothic as well as Romanesque features. The interiors of the cathedral are beautifully decorated with an ornamental altar and some good art works collected over the centuries. There is a single aisle inside the cathedral and various rich frescoes that were done by the local artists in the 17th and 18th centuries. There is an 18th century statue of Our Lady of Rosary.
Chiesa di San Francesco
The Chiesa di San Francesco is another important religious place in Pescia worth visiting. This ancient church, built in Romanesque style of architecture, has been damaged and restored several times during the centuries. The church is not as large or as impressive as the cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta but is still worth visiting for its beautiful interiors which is elegantly decorated.
Palazzi of Pescia
Pescia has several noteworthy palaces worth visiting. Most of these palaces were built here during the 13th to the 16th centuries as residential palaces. Some of the most well known palaces in the town are palazzo Cecchi, palazzo Cardini, palazzo Galeotti, Podesta palace and the communal palace. The architecture of all these palaces are significantly different than each other depending on which century they were built in.
Mercato Dei Fiori
The Mercato Dei Fiori is the local flowers market in Pescia and is one of the most interesting places to visit in town. Pescia is known for its beautiful flowers that grow on the surrounding hills and the exclusive flowers market in Pescia has an overwhelming selection of flowers. The sights, colors and fragrance at the market is quite heady.
Getting to Pescia
Pescia is located quite close to two major cities, Lucca and Florence. Visitors coming from other countries or other parts of Italy can take a flight to Florence and then take a bus or a taxi to reach Pescia. Buses and taxis are very easily available at the airport at all times; however, taxis are quite expensive. Another option is to travel by train; Pescia is very well connected to Florence and Lucca as well as other smaller towns of the province through train network. Getting tickets might be a little difficult during peak tourist seasons since most trains coming to the town are connecting trains that run between Lucca and Florence. Apart from that, travelling by road through cars or buses is also a good option.
Moving Around the Town
Pescia is not a very large town but there are a few options for moving around the town. The local buses in town cover almost all quarters of town, buses are very punctual and the tickets are available at almost everywhere in town. Visitors can also explore most parts of the town on foot, since it is quite pedestrian friendly. Those who have their own car can move around in their cars, since parking is not a problem in most areas. There are also plenty of places where visitors can rent scooters, mopeds and bicycles for exploring Pescia.
Stay and Accommodation
Pescia is fast becoming an important tourist place in Tuscany which is why there are quite a lot of good hotels in the town. Most hotels are located close to the center of the town and around the main piazza. Good comfortable rooms can be easily found even at the last moment, except for peak tourist seasons. There are also various family owned hotels and facilities available for those who prefer a homely atmosphere. There are also a few inexpensive bed & breakfasts here. Some of the best known hotels in town are hotel Villa Vezzani and hotel Albergo.
Eating in Pescia
There are some good restaurants, pizzerias, trattorias and bars in Pescia. Most restaurants in town serve inexpensive Italian and Tuscan dishes made from the locally grown fresh ingredients. One of the best things to have in Pescia is pizzas since there are plenty of good pizzerias in town. There are also quite a lot of traditional bakeries that serve local pastries and desserts which are typical to Tuscany. Grilled sea food is also available at most restaurants and trattorias.
Shopping in Pescia
There are only a few places to shop in Pescia located mainly close to the center of the city that sell locally made clothes, handicrafts, antiques and other odd items. There are also a few shops owned by locals that sell souvenirs and gifts made locally by the artisans in Pescia. Some of the best things to purchase here in Pescia are olive oil and wines since the hills surrounding Pescia are known for the grape vines and olive grooves that grow some of the best quality grapes and olives in the region. Extra virgin olive oil can be found almost anywhere in town, and good quality wines can be bought from most wine shops in Pescia.