On the next day we went to the city, approximately 3 km from the place we were staying, in order to see the tower up and close. The city is relatively small and the only sightseeings are the tower of Pisa, along with the city's walls that surround it as also the university that is being built there, since 1343 a.D.
The tower of Pisa is being built during the period of 1172 and 1350 A.D. and is being constructed mainly by using marbles. It's being composed by 6 floors and it's 56 meters high. Due to the fact hat is was being raised on soft ground, it started to incline year by year (sources say that it's still moving, approximately 1 mm per year). From time to time there are some propping reconstruction works, in order for the tower not to fall.
Our tour lasted approximately 1 ½ hours, so that we can see the sightseeing and grab some photos (me standing the tower etc).
Departing from the tower of Pisa, we returned to our beautiful hotel in order to prepare for our next destination, around 250 km away from there, the unknown (up to that time) city of Urbino. The city of Urbino was been selected as our final destination because it's located only 90 km from the port of Ancona, making it the ideal destination, since it was so close to the port there was no need for us to rush in order to catch up the ferry the next day.
The route that we decided to follow this time was through the provincial roads (superstrada) and not from the boring Autostrada (actually, we used Autostrada for approximately 70 km).
So from Pisa we drove using SuperStrada named FI-PI-LI until Firenze. From there, we drove through the highway (Autostrada) A11 until Arezzo, our exit (approximately 70 km).
Keeping on driving from Arezzo, we followed SS73 while up to that moment, the scenery didn't have anything interesting to show. On our route, driving on SS73-SS73bis, heading for Urbino and approximately 12 km before Sansepolcro, the weather was getting worst, watching heavy clouds of rain (storm) coming towards us and the route we wanted to follow. So we decided to stop for a while at the small village of Anghiari, approximately 8 km far from Sansepolcro, to have our lunch, until the storm dissolved. After approximately 1 hour and since the weather was getting better, it was time for us to cover the last 80 km from our trip.
At Sansepolcro we entered in the city, following the signs for San Giustino while a few minutes later we found ourselves driving on magnificent helix routes, some of them very tight, climbing a big hill which was hiding a tall and green mountain beneath it. The altimeter was showing approximately 1200 meters height while the temperature was lower than the one we used. This was mainly due to the rain that passed by the place half an hour earlier.Continuing our route through a green scenery similar to the Alps, the landscape was getting more and more beautiful. Even though we climbed down (the altimeter was showing steady 500m above sea levels), on our right and left sides, during the whole route we were staring at the colorful fields which were surrounded by many high hills, while at the top of the hills one could notice easily magnificent Italian strongholds.
Reaching the suburban called Urbania, we found easily and fast the signs for Urbino, on our left. We started climbing up again almost immediately while a few minutes later we found ourselves driving through a mountain chain, having as a final destination the city called Urbino. The city was still not seen, only at the last turns two big towers started appearing. Reaching the last turn, the sightseeing was breathtaking! We stopped immediately on the right side to stare at it. A fairy-like duchess castle, perfectly maintained, architectured during the renaissance period was dominating with its high towers as the city’s emblem.
Surely, the sightseeing was breath-taking. Once we managed to get a hold of ourselves, we tried to find our already reserved hotel, which was located on the back side of the town, outside the old city’s walls, at the end of the new city. We managed to locate it very easily, following the advertising signs. In our really comfortable hotel, we settled our luggage while staring the colorful flat lands view from our hotel’s window. Without a second thought, we started to make our way to the old city, in order to see and walk inside the Duchess palace.
Reaching the town’s walls, we’ve being informed that there’s also an operational university inside the city, established since 1506. Wandering in between the paved alleys, we felt that we were living on the renaissance era ourselves. Nearly the half city was being built inside the city walls, on reconstructed houses, without interfering with the place’s architecture. The city outside the old city’s walls (the new city) is almost not of any importance. Urbino is a place that is recommended as a destination, due to the uniqueness of the surrounding scenery as also due to the city’s emblem duchess castle.
After having a very good breakfast, we packed our stuff once again and departed from the beautiful city of Urbino, which stole our hearts. Once last look on the magnificent and truly magical castle and on the road again.
The route from Urbino to Ancona was through a superstrada (provincial road) and not through the Autostrada (highway). We decided to follow this route because we had plenty of time in front of us, but unfortunately it proved a mistake, on one hand due to the heat and on the other hand due to the road itself, which was lying in parallel with the beaches of Ancona, having thousands of people crossing the street all the time. We reached Ancona’s port 1 ½ hour prior to our departure without any special obstacles or traffic, were we departed to get back to Greece.
There’s a saying: what counts is not the destination but the journey. In some cases, the destination offers even greater value to the trip. Conclusions from our trip to Italy: If you do not speak Italian there’s a big percentage to do mistakes and circles on the road. But if you want to experience another time and feel awe in front of the greatness of human creativity it is a destination that should be considered one of your next trips.