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NayaSantaFe

DIY La Spezia to Pisa

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We will be in La Spezia i n May on the Oasis of Seas and I have been doing some research on getring from La Spezia to Pisa. So far a private tour will charge us about $120 per person (there are 11 of us) for a trip to Pisa and Florence. Then I read that it's not to complicated to just get a train from La Spezia to Pisa and DIY. This would probably be the less expdnsive option for us, but we aren't sure how easy it is to do Pisa on your own...

 

Are the main attractions far from the train station in Pisa? Could we walk there or would we need a taxi/bus? All advice and info will be of great help!!!

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You can walk the15-20 from the cruise port to La Spezia Centrale and catch a Frecciabianca train to Pisa Centrale in less than a hour. The walk from Pisa Centrale to the tower is another 20+ minutes. There are regional trains that can get you a little closer (Pisa San Rossore) but they make more stops along the route. I know that for a lot of North Americans the tower represents Italy while we were growing up so I won’t discourage you from going. We saw it on our first trip to Italy and you couldn’t wipe the smile off our faces.

 

But having stayed at La Spezia pre cruise on another trip, I have to say that I would visit Cinque Terre on that port call instead. The reason is that most cruise lines stop at Livorno, the gateway to Pisa and Florence while La Spezia is more limited. I would spend the day exploring the 5 villages and hike one section of the trail. The Monterosso to  Vernazza hike has the postcard view that people associate Cinque terre with. The Cinque terre train pass will give you access to the trains and trails for the day.

 

 

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On 2/12/2019 at 7:11 PM, lamchops said:

You can walk the15-20 from the cruise port to La Spezia Centrale and catch a Frecciabianca train to Pisa Centrale in less than a hour. The walk from Pisa Centrale to the tower is another 20+ minutes. There are regional trains that can get you a little closer (Pisa San Rossore) but they make more stops along the route. I know that for a lot of North Americans the tower represents Italy while we were growing up so I won’t discourage you from going. We saw it on our first trip to Italy and you couldn’t wipe the smile off our faces.

 

But having stayed at La Spezia pre cruise on another trip, I have to say that I would visit Cinque Terre on that port call instead. The reason is that most cruise lines stop at Livorno, the gateway to Pisa and Florence while La Spezia is more limited. I would spend the day exploring the 5 villages and hike one section of the trail. The Monterosso to  Vernazza hike has the postcard view that people associate Cinque terre with. The Cinque terre train pass will give you access to the trains and trails for the day.

 

 

 

We have a long day in La Spezia. Ship arrives at 8am and leaves at 8:30pm, so I am thinking we might be able to catch the train to Pisa, visit the tower area, then take the train to Cinque Terre? How doable is this? Or would we have to return to La Spezia, then catch the train to Cinque Terre?

 

As for the hike you mention, that sounds like something we would really want to do. But, how long is the walk? We will have our 3 and 6 year olds with us, so I am not to sure how doable this train is with kids.

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12 minutes ago, NayaSantaFe said:

 

We have a long day in La Spezia. Ship arrives at 8am and leaves at 8:30pm, so I am thinking we might be able to catch the train to Pisa, visit the tower area, then take the train to Cinque Terre? How doable is this? Or would we have to return to La Spezia, then catch the train to Cinque Terre?

 

As for the hike you mention, that sounds like something we would really want to do. But, how long is the walk? We will have our 3 and 6 year olds with us, so I am not to sure how doable this train is with kids.

It’s possible to do both with planning and scheduling but kids tend not understand a a schedule😀.  Just make sure you have a train schedule and give yourself time in case you miss your first choice. The train will pass through La Spezia on the way to the villages. You may have to pick 1 or 2 villages as you probably won’t have time for more than that. I liked Vernazza 1st and Monterosso as a 2nd choice.

I don’t think you would want to do the hike with small kids though. There’s some steep areas as well as narrow sections.

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8 minutes ago, lamchops said:

It’s possible to do both with planning and scheduling but kids tend not understand a a schedule😀.  Just make sure you have a train schedule and give yourself time in case you miss your first choice. The train will pass through La Spezia on the way to the villages. You may have to pick 1 or 2 villages as you probably won’t have time for more than that. I liked Vernazza 1st and Monterosso as a 2nd choice.

I don’t think you would want to do the hike with small kids though. There’s some steep areas as well as narrow sections.

 

Yoy are right, kids don't understand schedules. We will have to take a few options just in case things get difficult with the kids.

 

So, if I were to get the train in Pisa to La Spezia it will have a stop at  Vernazza and Monterosso and we could just get off. Or should I buy the actual ticket from Pisa to Monterosso/Vernazza? 

 

Sorry this train stuff is all new to me!

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1 hour ago, NayaSantaFe said:

 

So, if I were to get the train in Pisa to La Spezia it will have a stop at  Vernazza and Monterosso and we could just get off. Or should I buy the actual ticket from Pisa to Monterosso/Vernazza? 

 

Sorry this train stuff is all new to me!

You would buy a ticket from Pisa to monterosso or Vernazza . When you’re done, head back to La Spezia by train.

La Spezia is between Pisa and Cinque Terre.

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22 minutes ago, lamchops said:

You would buy a ticket from Pisa to monterosso or Vernazza . When you’re done, head back to La Spezia by train.

La Spezia is between Pisa and Cinque Terre.

 

Thanks for so much great information!

 

Would you suggest we have lunch in Posa before heading to Cinque Terre or are there some nice places to have lunch in the villages you mentioned?

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12 hours ago, NayaSantaFe said:

 

Would you suggest we have lunch in Posa before heading to Cinque Terre or are there some nice places to have lunch in the villages you mentioned?

Your kids may dictate where you have lunch but I would carry some snacks if possible. There’s a McDonald’s in Pisa if you need to use a washroom, WiFi, or kids snack. I personally would prefer to be back in La Spezia or Cinque Terre before going to a sit down restaurant. I have no problems with buying market, street, or local take out when we are off the ship.

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4 hours ago, lamchops said:

Your kids may dictate where you have lunch but I would carry some snacks if possible. There’s a McDonald’s in Pisa if you need to use a washroom, WiFi, or kids snack. I personally would prefer to be back in La Spezia or Cinque Terre before going to a sit down restaurant. I have no problems with buying market, street, or local take out when we are off the ship.

 

I usually like to have a good breakfast before leaving the ship and take snacks for the kids. They aren't picky eaters at all, so they will eat whatever the adults decide they want to eat. 

 

Hopefully breakfast will last until at least 2pm and that would mean we would probably eat lunch in Cinque Terre. Looks like Monterosso has a beach according to what I have been reading, so this might be a good option for the kids. 

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We booked a transfer from the ship to Pisa and then to Florence. We found that local company Smart Cruise Tours; their offer was good

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