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Train suggestions Florence SMN to Pisa

We will be staying at the Grand Baglioni near the Santa Maria Novella train station. My husband wants to do a quick trip and see the leaning tower of Pisa. I’m having trouble attaining train information. Trenitalia isn’t providing results. Has anyone made this trip?

Posted by
2467 posts

If you're looking at the Trenitalia schedule for later than mid-June, you're not seeing anything because the schedule changes around then. Try looking at the schedule for a few days from now - it won't be much different. Be sure to set the earliest time of day you want to go, also.

Posted by
8889 posts

What date are you looking for? There is a bi-annual timetable change at the beginning of June, and times past that may not yet be listed.
Did you remember that Florence is actually called "Firenze"?

I looked on Trenitalia ( https://www.trenitalia.com/en.html ) for next Wednesday (17/4/2019) starting at 09:00 and got a lot of trains:

09:28 Firenze S. M. Novella, Arrival 10:28 Pisa Centrale, Train Regionale Veloce 3113, Price from 8.60 €
09:38 Firenze S. M. Novella, Arrival 10:58 Pisa Centrale, Train Regionale 11793, Price from 8.60 €
09:53 Firenze S. M. Novella, Arrival 11:03 Pisa Centrale, Train Regionale 23353, Price from 8.60 €
10:28 Firenze S. M. Novella, Arrival 11:28 Pisa Centrale, Train Regionale Veloce 3117, Price from 8.60 €
10:53 Firenze S. M. Novella, Arrival 12:03 Pisa Centrale, Train Regionale 23355, Price from 8.60 €
11:00 Firenze S. M. Novella, Arrival 11:49 Pisa Centrale, Train Regionale Veloce 3151, Price from 8.60 €
11:28 Firenze S. M. Novella, Arrival 12:25 Pisa Centrale, Train Regionale Veloce 11715, Price from 8.60 €
11:38 Firenze S. M. Novella, Arrival 12:59 Pisa Centrale, Train Regionale 3121, Price from 8.60 €
11:53 Firenze S. M. Novella, Arrival 13:04 Pisa Centrale, Train Regionale 23357, Price from 8.60 €
12:10 Firenze S. M. Novella, Arrival 14:13 Pisa Centrale, Train Regionale 3144, Price from 9.90 €

Posted by
3812 posts

You must enter a day of travel before June 9, Italian station names and an early departure time.

The summer schedules will be similar to the winter schedules, but what really matters is that the local trains to Pisa have no reserved seats and can't sell out.

Enter the station, buy a ticket at the automatic machines, time-stamp your ticket (or pay the fine on the spot) and get on the first Regionale train to Pisa Centrale.

Posted by
824 posts

Google Maps is usually pretty accurate for getting a general feel for the travel times.

I would suggest taking the regional train to the Pisa San Rossore as it's a much shorter walk to the Piazza del Duomo.

I would also HIGHLY recommend taking the earliest train you can so you get in and out of the Cathedral area before very many of the tourist buses arrive. Although the cathedral is just stunning, the hordes of selfie-stick wielding tourist bus tourists made the experience our least enjoyable of any on our two week visit to Italy a couple years ago.

If you have the time, once you are down with Pisa, hop the train to Lucca and enjoy a nice relaxing few hours there. Walk the city wall, grab a meal, and unwind from the circus you've just seen in Pisa.

One last thing. When I was in Pisa, the ticket office was no longer attended and you HAD to purchase your tickets from a vending machine. So, you might as well purchase all you tickets at once before you depart Florence.

Posted by
10 posts

We will be in Florence during the first week of September. I really appreciate each one of you for taking the time to share your knowledge. Thank you all for great information!

Posted by
312 posts

Another option with Pisa is to go later in the day. I arrived at about 4:00 pm and still had four hours (plenty of time) before the monuments closed. Most of the tour buses were gone by the time I arrived.

Posted by
110 posts

That is really good to know Melissa! Thanks for the information.

Posted by
11294 posts

Following up on Melissa's tip, one of my best travel days, ever, was seeing Lucca and Pisa - in that order. Lucca (at least in 1989 when I went) had few visitors, and while bicycling on the wall was a highlight, the town had a lovely vibe. I then headed to Pisa later in the afternoon. By the time I got there, the tour buses were leaving, the souvenir vendors were literally packing up, and the marble at the Field of Miracles looked lovely in the afternoon light.

From Florence to Lucca and Lucca to Pisa, I took buses, but there are also trains. From Pisa back to Florence, I took the train, but there is also a bus. These routes are all unreserved, so you can just check schedules when you're there and take whatever works best for when you want to travel between the cities.

Posted by
15268 posts

I usually suggest to start with Lucca first, and spend more time in Lucca, then head to Pisa later on in the afternoon or early evening. The last train from Pisa to Florence is very late (~10:30pm) and even if one misses that last train, there are buses from the Pisa airport to Florence until almost Midnight.