The port city of Livorno, traditionally known as Leghorn, is situated on the Tyrrhenian Sea on the western coast of Tuscany, Italy. It is the 400 years old capital of the Province of the same name, and is a key port of access to Florence and Pisa (as well as the lesser known, wonderful places such as Lucca and Siena).
The city has the canals, the sea, the old and tranquil Medici Port, affordable shopping, relaxing seafront, cool breezes, wonderful fish dishes, and unbeatable sunsets.
It has a number of old cemeteries and the 17th century Old English Cemetery is the oldest protestant cemetery in Italy.
A Little Bit Of History
The port city was well established in medieval times but its population was only around 700 when Florence bought it from Genoa in 1421.
The Old Port and Fortress of Livorno
Florentine rulers decided to develop the city, as the port of Pisa had begun to silt up. Architect Buontalenti designed this ‘ideal city’ and it was officially recognized as a city in 1606.
The Medici ruled until 1737, followed by the Dukes of Lorraine from Austria who ruled until 1796, when Napoleon captured the region.
The Canal of Livorno
Napoleon captured the city three times between 1796 and 1800 with the intention of destroying its port because it was in competition with the port of Marseilles. He also wanted to seize the wealth of the British community in Livorno.
The Lorraines returned after the end of French occupancy and during their reign the city was extended, and new gateways and squares were built.
Luigi Orlando founded the shipyards in Livorno, which became a turning point and transformed the commercial city into an industrial powerhouse. It became a world famous builder of commercial and military vessels.
However, all this glory came crushing down during the WWII when the city was heavily bombarded, with most of its landmark buildings destroyed by the Allied Forces. The city never fully recovered from that destruction.
The Canal of Livorno
The city’s most famous sons like artist Giovanni Fattori (1825) and musician and composer Pietro Mascagni (1863) were born during the 19th century.
Sagre, Italian Food Festivals are celebrated throughout the year. Some of the other famous festivals and celebrations are the annual Rowing Races, cultural events, concerts and cabarets.
The city offers a whole range of shopping from local products to designer label clothes, jewelry, leather goods and shoes.
Where is Livorno?
- 14.2 miles/ 23 km from Pisa, Italy
- 31 miles/ 50 km from Lucca, Italy
- 206.9 miles/ 333 km from Venice, Italy
- 56.6 miles/ 91 km from Florence, Italy
- 202.5 miles/ 326 km from Rome, Italy
- 186.4 miles/ 300 km from Milan, Italy
- 13 miles/ 21 km from Pisa International Airport, Italy
- 58.4 miles/ 94 km from Florence Airport, Peretola, Italy
Things to See
- Old English Cemetery
- Piazza Cavour
- The Central Food Market
- Boat Ride
- Museo Fattori
- Terrazza Mascagni
- The Fortezza Vecchia
- The Old Mediceo Port
- Scoglio della Ballerina Beach
- Walking or Cycling Tours from Livorno
- Ardenza and Antignano
- Ippodromo Federico Caprilli
- Drive through the Tuscan countryside
Livorno is a lively, unpretentious city that offers you an experience of the day-to-day life in modern Italy, which is full of surprises.
It is sure to offer you the charm and an unforgettable experience with its mixture of historic buildings and easy going restaurants and lively streets.
We wish you a fantastic Mediterranean cruise!