Living in Pisa

Living in Pisa, Tuscany, Italy

PISA and the surrounding areas: 

Probably the most important thing you need to know before coming to Pisa is where Tuscany is located, how far is it from where you live, and which towns, cities and areas make up this Region.

The city of Pisa is close to many other important and famous cities in Tuscany and in Liguria, such as Florence, Lucca, Livorno, Genova and other minor centers of great beauty such as Volterra and Cinque Terre. All these cities can be easily reached by public transportation or by car. The immediate surrounding region is, however, very rich in lesser known natural and artistic treasures, which well deserve to be discovered and appreciated during your holiday in Pisa.

Moreover, Pisa is only few kilometers away from the beach and from very popular resorts such as Versilia and Viareggio, Forte dei Marmi, Marina di Pietrasanta. The closest beach towns, Marina di Pisa and Tirrenia, can be reached in 10 to 20 minutes, by car, bus or train.


DISCOVER PISA the city of the Leaning Tower and more:


The city of Pisa rises above the banks of Arno, just before the mouth of the river at Marina of Pisa. It is one of the most important cities in Tuscany and it is extremely well-known in the world, because of its famous symbol: “the Leaning Tower“.
Pisa is both an ancient and modern city. On the one hand, it is proud of its past , when it was a Marittime Republic and became a world power during the Middle Ages. On the other hand, now is famous for having three of the most important universities in Italy: The Scuola Normale Superiorethe Sant’ Anna school of Advanced Studies and the University of Pisa.
When Pisa is mentioned, everybody thinks about its tower, but this impressive leaning bell tower it’s just one of the many monuments you can find in this nice Tuscan city. The beautiful Piazza del Duomo collects, in a unique architectural complex in the world, the so called Campo dei Miracoli (Miracles square), the main religious monuments of the city: The Tower, the Cathedral, the Baptistery and the Campo Santo (the graveyard).



The main problem for students in Pisa, and consequently also for our international students, is accommodation. Rooms in dormitories are not available. Usually incoming students share a flat with other Italian or international colleagues. During the welcome week the IRO will help you with this search but mostly it will be your buddy who will assist you in finding flats or rooms to be shared. To make this search easier, please contact your buddy as soon as you receive his/her date by e-mail from the IRO. Prices of the rooms are about 250-350 Euro per month. Generally these prices do not include utilities or the expenses for the upkeep and management of the common property. In the majority of cases landlords require a deposit of one or two months’ rent, which will be given back at the end of the contract. We suggest you reserve a room in a hostel for the first days of your stay to take time and choose accommodation according to your preferences.

The University of Pisa is a partner of the international student-to-student housing platform. Students who are coming from abroad to Pisa can find and book room on rooms on this platform are offered by our students that go abroad for a study abroad semester, exchange, Erasmus or internship. Using the platform to search for a room is completely free. When making a concrete booking, an administrative fee (about €75) is charged as part of Housing Anywhere‘s secure booking system.


Free Time:

Pisa is a university city full of life. Its centre boasts a wide range of meeting places: bars, pubs, restaurants, pizzerias, discos and live music pubs. Around Piazza Garibaldi and Piazza delle Vettovaglie you have the chance to plunge into the heart of a youthful lifestyle and enjoy the classic “happy hour” in one of the many bars of this
area. The cultural life in Pisa revolves around museums, cultural associations, cinemas and theatres where programmes of events include theatre, concerts, opera, dance and other events. The most important theatre is the Teatro Verdi located in the city centre, built between 1865 and 1867 and which was officially opened with the opera “Guglielmo Tell” by Rossini. This theatre has one of the biggest stages in Italy. Besides the Teatro Verdi there is Sant’Andrea Theatre located inside the Romanesque Sant’Andrea Church (12th Century).
There is also CinemaTeatroLux located in Santa Caterina Square ain the ancient chapel of SS. Salvatore (14th Century). The two latter theatres often host shows of local companies at very cheap prices. If you like going to cinema, Pisa offers lots of them, in the city centre as well as outside the medieval walls. At the Arsenale Cine Club you can find movies in various European languages. Wednesdays is Spectator’s Day at the cinemas, so tickets cost only 4,50 euro instead of 7,00. Many young people take advantage of this discount to go to the cinema. If you like exhibitions many of them are hosted at the Palazzo blu and at the Expo Center SMS San Michele degli Scalzi.



The Centro Sportivo Universitario (CUS) offers students the possibility to practice a variety of sports and to sign up for fitness courses. Registration and use of the facilities is free and activities with instructors are at discounted prices. To sign up: • fill in the registration form online • visit the CUS office on Via F. Chiarugi, bringing with you:

1) Completed online registration form

2) Medical certificate declaring you are fit to participate in non-competitive sport (*the purchase and possession of this certificate is mandatory in Italy. If you possess a certificate from another country, contact the CUS to verify its validity)

3) Certificate of enrolment at the University

More information:



During the year you can participate in several events. Please mark the following dates on your calendar:
The feast of Saint Ubaldo, flower market along the river Arno at Le Piagge;
In this month many events are organized, which is why residents call it “giugno pisano” :
16th June: the Luminara, on the eve of the feast of the Patron Saint, all the façades of the buildings on the Arno embankments are illuminated by candles and nightlights (also called lampanini). The feast, also called “the Lights of San Ranieri” reaches its climax with a beautiful firework show;
17th June: Palio of San Ranieri, feast of Pisa’s Patron Saint. In the afternoon four boats representing the colours of the most ancient districts of the city take part in a regatta on the river Arno. This is a vestige of the prestigious tradition of Pisa as one of the ancient Maritime Republics. Last Sunday of June: the Battle of the Bridge (Gioco del Ponte): it is played on the Ponte di Mezzo (the Middle Bridge) between the teams of Tramontana and Mezzogiorno. The Gioco del Ponte starts in the evening after the historical 16th century costume parade

Mid October:
Pisa Book festival: reading, publishing workshops and discussion take place and food is available;

End of October:
Dolcemente Pisa: festival of typical cakes of the Tuscan tradition;

Pisa Vini: an important exhibition dedicated to wines and to the typical high quality products of the Pisa area.

Eevery second week end of the month, Pisa hosts a craftsmanship market; every third Saturday of the month in Piazza della Berlina there is a food market with a wide variety of local and organic vegetables, honey and cheese.


Cost of living:

City-centre bus ticket € 1,10
Magazines € 2,00-4,00
Newspaper  € 1,20
Newly-released movies € 7,00
1 litre of mineral water  € 0,50
1 litre of fresh milk  € 1,50
1 kilo of fresh bread  € 3,50
1 kilo of pasta  € 1,80
6 eggs € 1,15
A beer in a pub  € 5,00
€ 1,00


€ 15,00


Local and national holidays:

Italian bankholidays
(shops, offices and schools are closed)

1st January: New Year’s day

6th January: Epiphany

March-April: Easter Monday (date may change)

25th April: Liberation Day

1st May: Labour Day

2nd June: Founding of the Italian Republic

17th June: Patron Saint’s day, San Ranieri
(only in Pisa)

15th August: Feast of the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary

1st November: All Saints Day

8th December: Immaculate Conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary

25th December: Christmas Day

26th December: Saint Stephen’s Day