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Several years ago while we were driving from Florence to Le March we stopped in to Cortona, Tuscany for lunch. From that short stay and quick look around  I knew that I would return some day to spend some time there.

The day came and I spent 3 full wonderful days exploring this gorgeous city.

I took the train from Bagni di Lucca to Cortona, which took almost 4 hours with 2 changes, one at Lucca and one at Florence (Firenze). There are actually 2 train stations for Cortona so you must get off at Camucia-Cortona.

Taken from the train

I took a taxi from the train station up to the town. On the way up the views were so magnificent that I couldn’t help myself from taking many photos. The taxi driver stopped and offered for me to get out and take as many photos as I would like. Yes please.

Just when I thought I had seen it all I arrive in this gorgeous city. To say that it took my breath away would be an understatement.

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The hotel I had booked in to was just a couple of metres from Piazza della Repubblica – down a small lane-way. I was greeted by a very friendly and proud local young man who was the receptionist.  He pointed out that some of the door-ways and parts of the building in this hotel were from the Etruscan era. Can you imagine being in something that old.

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Etruscan Door-way

After checking in, I went to explore.  It was quite late afternoon by this time, so too late for restaurants to be serving lunch. So I chose a popular  bar overlooking the Piazza, to have my apertivo and people watch and take in the activities that were happening around me. I could have sat there for hours and I probably did as I enjoyed it so much I was not in any hurry to move on. If you enjoy piazzas, this stunning Medieval Piazza is a must seen with its terrific shops and restaurants.

Cortona is a must stop if you are in Tuscany and the piazza is stunning both from its history as well as current functionality. There is so much history in Cortona and this is a perfect starting point

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Piazza della Repubblica, and its nearly attached twin, Piazza Signorelli, are wonderful settings in which to become engaged with food, history, shops, but most of all people. Sitting up on the steps overlooking Piazza della Repubblica appears to be a very popular past time for tourists and locals. Of course I joined them. I was delighted to visit this very charming piazza which was less busy than many other piazzas that I have visited in Italy.

This is the view from the breakfast room which was on the top floor in my hotel.

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View from breakfast room

Mama Mia, absolutely gorgeous and so ITALIAN

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