A Wheelchair Accessible Guide to Pisa, Italy

Pisa was the second stop on my quest to see as much of Italy as was possible in two and a half weeks. My main reason for visiting Pisa was to do the touristy thing and see the Leaning Tower, which I did and it was great.

We arrived in Pisa after leaving Venice by boat and then transferred to a private wheelchair accessible van arranged by Rome and Italy. If you missed my post about accessibility in Venice, you can read it here.

I spent the day and a half that I was in Pisa exploring the Square of Miracles and the surrounding area.

From what I saw, the city is fairly flat and most of the sidewalks have sloped curbs.

The hotel I stayed at was a ten to fifteen minute roll/walk from the Square of Miracles, so I didn’t end up using any public transportation options. The public buses did have signs on them indicating they were wheelchair accessible though I do not know from personal experience. If the ramp is as steep as they are in Rome, then you might need assistance.

The Square of Miracles is made up of the Baptistery, Duomo (cathedral), Campinale (aka the Leaning Tower of Pisa), and Campo Santo (monumental cemetery).

Both the Baptistery and the Duomo are wheelchair accessible. There is an upper floor in the Baptistery but that is not wheelchair accessible due to the many many stairs that circle up there.

As you might guess, there isn’t an elevator in the Leaning Tower, but the view from the outside is still impressive. I believe there is a small fee for admission to the Duomo, but it doesn’t apply to wheelchair users and one additional friend or family member.

I didn’t get a chance to visit Campo Santo, but I imagine that it would be given the accessibility of the other structures.

There is a wheelchair accessible bathroom right in the square, so you won’t need to spend time looking for one and you don’t need to pay the bathroom fee or wait in line to use it.

Other things to do in and around the Square
Visit the museums
Located on the side of the square are the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo and the Museo delle Sinopie. Admission is free for wheelchair users and one extra person. The museums are a nice and quiet spot away from the crowded area of the square.

Shop the market
Right outside the wall of the square are a bunch of kiosks selling all kinds of souvenirs.

Dine outside
You won’t go hungry after visiting all the monuments as there are lots of restaurants in the square to choose from. There is a single step to enter some of the restaurants, but dining outside is available at most restaurants. If you do prefer to dine inside, I would suggest asking for assistance from the waiters. It was really windy on one of the days I was in Pisa and one of the waiters at a restaurant offered to help lift me and my wheelchair up the step to get in. He rounded up one of his coworkers and they were able to get me in without any problems, despite my chair being very heavy. When they helped me descend the step, I gave them a tip since lifting customers is probably not in their job description.

Wander the streets
I had a fun time wandering some of the quieter streets and soaking up the architecture.

You could easily spend most of the day at the Square of Miracles marveling at everything, sit somewhere and relax, and buy some cute souvenirs to bring back home for your friends and family. And, of course, try to capture the perfect picture of you holding up the Leaning Tower.

2 thoughts on “A Wheelchair Accessible Guide to Pisa, Italy

  1. Wonderful pictures – great to know it is possible. You have a power chair – do you think it is as doable with a manual chair? Anything a manual chair user should be aware of?

    • Thanks Carrie! Yes, I think it would be fine with a manual wheelchair. From the areas I saw, the city is pretty flat.

Leave a Reply