What a fun afternoon we spent exploring Pisa, Italy, and climbing to the top of the Leaning Tower of Pisa, officially known as the bell tower of the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta! In order to climb the 294 steps to the top, we had purchased our online tickets 6 weeks in advance. I was ready!
Our first glimpse of the tower was through the gate of the fortified wall. Wow!! It is really leaning! Please tell me this is safe….
Whenever I travel, my fear of heights doesn’t prevent me from seeking the tallest buildings and buying tickets to the top. But I usually don’t linger there very long. I always get a little irrational as I stand near the edge for fear it will fall–for no good reason. So what a great idea it was for me to make plans to climb to the top of a leaning building!!!
After strolling around Miracle Square, we checked our bags and made our way to the line outside. Honestly, the closer I got to the Leaning Tower of Pisa, the crazier it looked! With sweaty hands, I waited for my climb to begin.
Top reason NOT to climb the Leaning Tower of Pisa!!
It’s a tall, leaning building!!!
But I couldn’t let my fear of heights be the reason to miss this climb! Onward!!
Once inside, we were at the base of the stone spiral staircase. It is a two-way, narrow passageway you share with others who may not speak your language. Just keep to the right and keep smiling.
The steps are slick and worn from the many brave souls who have gone before me. As we spiraled our way to the top, we would sometimes lean to the outside of the stairwell and sometimes to the inside. Hand on the wall.
As we climbed, there were several small landings where we stepped aside to rest. My knees were pretty happy about that! Soon we reached the top and looked out over Pisa and the Miracle Square.
Made it to the top!! They should really fix their tower!
Time for a few pictures of the old bells and the scenery–but not for long! No lingering for me! Too tilty for this gal. And I kept expecting to hear someone yell timberrrrrrrrr!
After a quick descent and close encounters with climbers coming up, we retreated to the lovely grounds of the piazza to watch the people get just the right pose as if they’re propping up the tower. It’s really so funny to watch.
Propping Up the Tower of Pisa
I had to do MY part as well.
The climb to the top of the Leaning Tower of Pisa was an interesting experience, and I’m glad we made the climb.
I just hope all those tourists will keep propping it up!!
Fun fact: By the twentieth century, the tower was leaning more than 20 feet to the south and the tower was closed for safety reasons. A renovation costing $27 million and lasting 11 years reduced the amount it leaned by 15 inches. Well that’s MUCH better!!