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The Leaning Tower of Pisa

On one of the full day trips taken with the program we chartered a bus and went to see one of the most famous international landmarks, The Leaning Tower.

The Tower itself is a sight to see, but once you've seen it . . . well, what to do now?  The tower is so precarious that it is supported by huge steel braces to keep it from toppling over and subdue the illusion.   The obligatory picture with the tower is always a must.  (One important note:   Stand at a distance from the tower to create the illusion, as you are not permitted to actually touch the tower.  A friend went to Pisa and we told her to get a picture "holding up the Tower."  She came back and said she couldn't because it was fenced off!)

How could I have come all this way without doing it?   With Rina's help, the picture turned out pretty good. 
The Leaning Tower, unfortunately, is pretty much of a tourist trap.  The location is heavily fortified with a troop of vý cumpra, the Italian sidewalk vendors.   The booths surrounding the tower sold everything you could possibly need, from the expected tower paper weights to a 48" tall tower with a lightbulb inside. (classy!)

Travel guru Rick Steves recommends that you bring a picnic lunch to eat on the lawn in front of the tower.  However, when I visited the lawn was roped off and no one was allowed on it.  Hopefully, this was only a temporary inconvenience for visitors in Februrary.   Overall, I am glad that I saw the tower, but I am also glad that I did not have to go out of my way to see it.  Getting to the tower is probably more trouble (and expense) than it is worth.  Depending on how much value you assign to that picture in front of the Tower.


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