Well, I’d imagined the Tower be really gigantic, comparable to the Eiffel Tower we’d seen last year. But, no, this one was cuter and looked tameable! 🙂
The Tower stands tall and attractive at 56 metres. A classic example of Pisa-Romanesque architecture, it leans at 3.97 degrees from the verticle. The construction work began somewhere in 1173 and went on for 200 years!!! Even now, some renovation work happens on and off – perhaps to ensure the Tower doesn’t lean way too much!
We decided to go to the top of the tower. We booked our slots for this (about two hours in advance) by paying 15 euros each. Meanwhile, we visited the nearby Cathedral and Baptistery that were built even before the Tower. We could see a zillion people at the Pisa’s Cathedral Square, some of whom were seen giving typical poses for the camera – a striking pose was one of stopping the Tower from falling using one’s palms/hands! (Optical illusion aside, that was quite a sight for us!) The souvenir shops, as always, attracted me. We ended up buying a few miniature Towers. 🙂
It was time to pat and say ciao (hello in Italian) to the Tower. We waited in queue (a short one luckily!) to explore the monument from inside. A steep flight of stairs stared at us as we went in. We knew we had to climb some 297 steps to reach to the top. Ah, our excitement only increased! We enjoyed every view of the little city from varying heights of the Tower. The Tower seemed to lean and drag us sideways as we were ascending and later descending! Well, the climb to the topmost level (seventh floor) did demand all the attention, as the staircase was getting narrower and slippery. But the effort was well worth it as we enjoyed some of the best picturesque views the Tower could offer us!