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Pistoia Travel Guide  

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Lost in the transition of time, Pistoia, a small Roman town, is one of the finest places for arcaded piazzas, watchtowers built in the medieval era and crafts. It is said that the word ‘pistol’ meaning – a small weapon, has its origins from here. The place attracts people with an eye for medieval style architecture and cathedrals and churches dating back to the 6th Century. It sits at the foot of Apennines and is a sentinel to a number of remarkable contemporary arts. The major tourist sites here are - Centro Storico (historic center), Piazza del Duomo, Piazza della Sala, Church of San Giovanni Fuorcivitas, Basilica Della Madonna dell'Umilta, Palazzo Comunale and Ospedale del Ceppo. The serene Centro Storico is well preserved and is a testimony to the growth of the city after the medieval battlements. The Piazza del Duomo is one of the best Italian squares. Do not miss the lovely ceiling, as it was part of the former bishop’s palace. It includes a Baptistery too which is worth the visit, as it stands out for its green and white stripes of marble and exquisite carved medallions. An additional attraction of this place is the contrasting florid bell tower. Piazza Della Sala is the smaller Italian square. The majestic exteriors of the church of San Giovanni Fuorcivitas, is made of dark green and white marbles. The 13th century pulpit is unique, extremely beautiful and is mostly considered by many- a true masterpiece. It is believed that the Basilica della Madonna dell'Umilta is built on the site of the ancient church of Santa Maria Forispostae. The building has an octagonal dome designed by Giorgio Vasari and stands tall with the height of 59 meters. Pistoia's town hall, Palazzo Comunale, is another significant tourist spot worth a look. It contains a museum, showcasing Pistorian art collection from the 13th century onwards. On the walls are marble slabs, friezes and frescoes which itself is fantastic apart from the donated collections of Puccini, several masterpieces of Giacinto Gimignani, and works of famous architect, Michelucci. The interior artwork of Ospedale del Ceppo will make you catch your breath in its practicality. It adorns bright colored terracotta work, which gives the impression of glazed earthenware. If you are a foodie, the best restaurant to dine in the city is - Bisteccatoscana. It is a steakhouse and has been awarded the ‘Certificate of Excellence-2013’. Other best dining options can be Lago Lo Specchio, La Dimora del Gusto, Povero Chic Ristorante and for to enjoy the real Italian food - Da Ale E Sally Osteria Ikke'. Your trip will be incomplete if you do not get to savor the typical Tuscany flavors at Ristorante Rafanelli. The best time of the year to visit Pistoia is around 25th July, when the spectacular medieval festival is celebrated. Another reason to visit during this time is because of the well-renowned music festival attended by many world class singers. It is hard to believe that Pistoia is often missed out by travelers who are startled by the grandness of Florence, ancientness of Siena and the famous city of Lucca with walls built in the Renaissance era.

Area code:
0573
Time zone:
UTC+1
Demonym:
pistoiesi
Patron:
San Jacopo
Holiday:
25 luglio
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