Turislucca

An empty street of Lucca

A Ghost Town…for Now

Posted on by

We have never lived in times like these.  In a matter of days, actually hours, the virus called coronavirus or Covid-19 has changed the life of every single Italian. When the elderly, like our parents/grandparents, were children, they lived through times of war, strife, and hunger. This too is a war, but against a deviously underhanded and invisible enemy that has insinuated anguish and uncertainty into our lives. The streets and squares are deserted.  The shops are shut.  People are locked away in their homes, small or large, ugly or beautiful. Even the grand historical buildings, which we talk about passionately on a daily basis, seem not to exist anymore.  They’ve disappeared from our minds and have been replaced with bigger fears and problems.  The buildings are now dormant, awaiting our return.  And looking around, we realize that this...

Cammellias in the garden

Camellias and their Surroundings

Posted on by

Spring is in the air. The countryside of Lucca is characterized by the elegant, variegated and multicolored camellias in full bloom. In these days, the ancient villas of Lucca used to open their gates to their remarkable ‘secret’ gardens to welcome lovers of art, architecture, history, and beauty, including the spectacular Villa Reale of Marlia (recently restored) and the exquisite Villa Torrigiani of Camigliano, both of which have extraordinary camellia plant collections. Castelvecchio di Compito and Pieve di Compito are picturesque hamlets located just twenty minutes away from Lucca, immersed in olive groves with small babbling brooks of spring water, descending from the Monti Pisani (Pisan Hills). The residents of this area have transformed their private gardens, big and small, and communal areas into an authentic and unique park where the Camellia, in every shape, form, and color, is...