Travelling by train is relatively cheap in Italy, as long as you only use regional trains (Regionale). For example a return ticket from Lucca to the end of the Cinque Terre (Monterosso) was only 9,30 EURO (2004).
Another advantage is, that you get in contact with both locals and other travellers on the trains. Apart from that you can get off an on the trains as long as you reach your final destination within 6 hours.
But be prepared that regional trains are often delayed. A delay of up to 30 mins is quite normal and I often experienced such delays. But as I was on holidays in Italy, I didn't really mind.
I went to Lucca by train. Once I arrived at the train station I had to go through the walls; climb up and down some stairs (with my luggage), walk inside a tunnel (under the ramparts) and then carry on walking for some miles to my accomodation that was in the town center.
If you are going to Lucca by train, you should ask somebody where you can find the nearest gate to avoid climbing the ramparts. Then look for a navetta (electric minibus) to the city center. Otherwise you could take a taxi to your accomodation.
You can take the back roads from the main highway of 435 going east/west to highway 12 going north/south. There are a number of routes that can be taken, very few of which describe which direction you are going, or to what destination. We followed the general direction, even though it wound around a lot, and eventually ended up to the place we were looking for. The joy is going through so many small villages/provinces while you are wandering the back roads.
Find a place to park outside the wall but watch out for colored stripes. Locals have car stickers allowing to park in areas designated. The white lines (I think I recall) are prohibited and blue allowed. In Montecatini Terme, though I got a ticket for $35 Euro parking in short term blue-and no notice stating it was only 15 minutes. Be careful. There are 10 pay parking lots around Lucca wall but not easy to find them, and most are full
We arrived in Lucca on our way to Pisa Airport to fly back to London, hence we had our suitcases with us.
Unfortunately there is no left luggage office at Lucca Train Station, and the luggage lockers were all broken : ((
Luckily we had been warned of this and had heard that there was baggage storage available at the main Tourist Office.
This was fine, but it took around 15-20 mins to walk to the tourist office with our bags, which was annoying as we only had a few hours to spend in Lucca.
They were helpful at the tourist office, and did store our bags - at a rate of 2 euros per bag per hour - ouch!!
Also, it is at the Main Tourist Office, on Piazzale Verdi, not the Tourist Office that is closest to the train station.....