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Lucca Lucca, a city of Ligurian-Etruscan origins, enclosed by a circle of 16th-century walls, is a small enchanted world. Lucca is one of the most charming city, rich in history, art and tradition towns in Tuscany. Within the walls in addition to the historical buildings visited by tourists such as churches, towers, museum, cloisters, there is still a variety of small traditional shops one hundred years old, but especially squares with fountains, alleys, narrow streets make Lucca really unique of its kind. Lucca, visited by the Ligurians and the Etruscans, became a colony and then a flowering Roman town. It was the capital of the Lungobard Duchy of Tuscia. The conversion of the Lungobards to Catholicism manifested itself in the construction of many churches; Lucca is called, in fact, "the city of 100 churches". It reached its period of maximum splendour, to its intense mercantile and banking activity, and above all to processing and trading of the precious silk that was exported to markets all over Europe. The battles with neighbouring Pisa and Florence for the control of transportation routes more than once necessitated the rebuilding of the walls. From the 16th century on, the city was a free oligarchic republic. In 1805, Napoleon made Lucca a principality, granting authority to his sister Elisa Bonaparte in Baciocchi. Elisa governed up to 1814, carrying out grandiose public works and making many radical modifications to the city's appearance. After the Restoration, Maria Luisa di Borbone, who with her son Carlo Ludovico was distinguished for having built a new aqueduct, renewed the reforming criteria of the Baciocchi. In 1847, the city became part of the Grand Duchy of Tuscany, and then in 1860 it joined the Kingdom of Italy. Outside the walls, which enclose the beauty of the city, you can discover the magic of Tuscany: a charming rural landscape in which rice a series of villages, monasteries and castles along; today they represent good examples of Romanesque architecture, often well preserved and enhanced by the beauty of the surroundings. The very elegant noble villas are at only a few minutes from Lucca, basking in the verdant countryside among olive groves and vineyards. They were not only the summer residences of the noble families but were also representative of a certain status as can be seen from their beautiful architecture and lavish interior decor such as Villa Mansi in Segromigno, Villa Reale in Marlia, Villa Fanini a Gragnano. It is the only villa which can house up to 900 people indoors for each sort of events, conference, weddings. The expression of a simple and plain country tradition, Lucca"s cooking maintains the substantial and flavourful character of its past. Rich in fantasy in its approach to old flavours and to the use of genuine primary materials. Traditional pastry shops and bakeries, present offer the simple sweets of the past, like the famous Buccellato, extremely old sweet bread, flavoured with anise and raisins.