Basic guide to the best art and museums to visit in Pisa for cruise passengers to the port of Livorno in 2023.
Cruise passengers on a shore excursion to Pisa will not have enough time to visit the museums of the city, but if you decide to explore Pisa on your own, there are a few museums to put on your must-see list.
Besides two major museums in Pisa close to the Leaning Tower, the Cathedral's Museum and the Museo delle Sinopie (Sinopias Museum), there are 2 other museums tio visit and a art mural to enjoy.
The Museo Nationale di San Matteo is worth the walk to the north bank of the River Arno, where 12th to 15th century Pisan art is displayed.
If traveling to Pisa by train or punlic bus, the cruise passenger shouldn't miss a mural painted by Keith Haring on the rear wall of the Church of Sant’Antonio (very close to the train station).
To learn more about the top things to do and sites to visit check our review on how to explore the top 8 highlights of Pisa
1. Museo Nationale di San Matteo
(St. Mathew's National Museum)
This museum sits on the north bank of the Arno in the former monastery of St. Matthew, built in the 13th Century. The Pisan art featured here ranges from the 12th to the 15th century.
St. Mathew's National Museum, Pisa
Photo © IQCruising.com
There are also a few 18th-century pieces from the Tuscan art school. Sculptures, paintings, miniatures, and tapestries are all on display as well as ceramic basins and glass-work.
Some of the most famous pieces are by Nicola and Giovanni Pisano, Francesco di Valdambrino and Donatello. You can also peruse the local Romanesque and Gothic art.
A large mural on the rear wall of the Church of Sant’Antonio was painted in July 1989 and has become one of the main public art displays in Pisa. It is known as the last public work of New York artist Keith Haring.
The total area of the mural is 180 square meters and represents humanity summarized in 30 separate figures.
Photo © IQCruising.com
The Church (and the Mural) is located very close to both the train and bus stations. If traveling on your own to Pisa, the cruise traveler will have a rare a opportunity to see the artwork.
3. Museum of the Ancient Ships of Pisa
In 1998, ancient ships were discovered in the Pisa-San Rossore Station. A large number of ships sank in this particular junction of the Pisan channel and the river Serchio. As archaeologists continue to work, you can visit the area and see the ships, as more pieces are continually being uncovered and restored.