The vast majority of people pass through Pisa for – at most – a couple of hours in order to take one of those must-have photos of themselves “propping up” the leaning tower of Pisa. But if you’re interested in seeing another side of this city, then you’ve got to stay longer – preferably overnight. The touristy part right around the tower isn’t representative of all Pisa has to offer, and if you stay the night you’re likely to be one of very few of your friends to be able to say you saw anything but the tower.
Pisa is home to one of Italy’s major universities, so there’s quite a substantial student population in the city. This also means it can be really budget-friendly, if you get away from the square right around the tower. Look for hostels in the historic center but not within sight of the famous tower and your wallet will thank you.