Lucca is best known for its Renaissance city wall that completely surrounds the historic center.
It is along here you can bike or run or sit under its many trees and have a picnic.
This is where the Rolling Stones have chosen to have their only concert in Italy for their 'No Filter ' Tour on September 23rd.
They will be playing for 60,000 fans inside the temporary stage built for this show. Another 50,000 people are expected to be outside the concert, enjoying the music from the streets of Lucca. It seems impossible to imagine this small city accommodating a crowd of this size.
Finding a hotel in Lucca for the night was not easy. We found the last room available in a villa 10 km from the city center. The room was small and dusty and fit 2 twin beds with thin wool blankets. Certainly not a honeymoon destination.
Driving into Lucca the night of the concert was more challenging. The roads were blocked off and we were directed to parking lots to be further transported into the city center with buses.
We got creative, parked at a Bricca store and did a little shopping to justify our stay.
The city was buzzing with excitement and it seemed everyone was wearing the Rolling Stones 'tongue logo' t-shirt. I wondered what the Lucca tourist that wasn't going to the concert was thinking . This was not the place to be if you weren't attending.
We had arrived a couple hours before the concert and rather than fight the thousands of fans partying in the streets, we rented bikes and rode along the city wall to check out the enormous stage. Security blocked the curious from getting too close without tickets. We enjoyed the sunset from a picnic table with an aperol spritz, cheeses and meats.
To get into the concert, we had to go through 5 checkpoints to get to Section A Gold. This is the area closest to the stage. The process was efficient and security was tight. Fortunately for the lucky residents living next to the wall, they had front seat tickets to the show without paying a euro.
The Stones did not disappoint and sounded amazing despite their aging bodies.
In the bottom photo, you can see the massive crowd in the stadium, along the historic wall. Somewhere in that mass, Mike and I were singing "It's only rock and roll but we like it ..."
a night we'd never forget in Lucca.
even security were taking photos no tickets, no problem
the crowd inside