The Italian city where bikes reign supreme

A flying visit to the lovely city of Lucca in Tuscany, Italy gave me a blissful couple of hours spent with my camera snapping the many bicycles in the city as the sun went down. Forget lycra and the latest road bikes, we’re talking vintage sit-up-and-beg bikes and no-one wears a helmet.

As in Amsterdam, everyone here cycles, no matter what age – I even saw one very old chap who was cycling past with a stick in one hand; once he’d locked his bike, he limped off leaning heavily on his stick.

The historic centre of Lucca is encircled by a wide wall covered in an avenue of trees – the perfect place for a shady walk or a peaceful bike ride. You can get your bearings from the top of the wall and then cycle through the city.

Top attractions in Lucca include a Roman amphitheatre and the Torre Guinigi – which you can’t miss as it has trees growing on the top. Information about renting bikes is available on the Lucca Tourism website.