City of Siena
Set amongst the gently rolling hills of the Chianti area, the ancient town of Siena has always attracted many tourists. Its winding medieval streets lined with enchanting shops, tower houses, and aristocratic palazzos lead you, almost unwittingly, to the famous Piazza del Campo.
Perhaps, more so than in any other Tuscan city, in Siena you truly feel as if you have stepped back to the Middle Ages. It has kept up its traditions through the centuries and they are still an integral part of the daily life of its citizens.
The historic center of Siena is a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Siena was at its greatest between the 13th and 14th centuries when it was home to the leading exponents of Italian Gothic art such as Duccio di Buoninsegna, Simone Martini, the Lorenzetti brothers, and Jacopo della Quercia.
Meet the guide and visit:
- Church of San Domenico. In the interior of this Gothic church, you will find very impressive frescoes and the venerated relics of Saint Catherine (Caterina) of Siena, one of the patron saints of Europe.
- Banchi di Sopra and Banchi di Sotto. These are the city’s busiest streets flanked by aristocratic palazzos and many shops where you will find local delicacies such as Panforte and Ricciarelli, Chianti and Brunello wines, cold cuts and pici (hand-rolled pasta).
- Piazza del Campo. This fan-shaped square has always been the political and commercial center of the ancient Republic of Siena. It is also where the famous horse race, the Palio, takes place twice yearly. You will also find the Palazzo Pubblico and Torre del Mangia.
- Cathedral and Baptistery. The imposing Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta (Duomo of Siena), by Giovanni Pisano, with its splendid façade, is one of the most stunning and illustrious Gothic churches in all of Tuscany. In its interior, there are works by Donatello, Nicola Pisano, and Giovanni Pisano. An entrance fee is required.
- Palazzo Chigi-Saracini. This building is a typical example of medieval architecture.
The itinerary can be changed or extended to include a visit to: Palazzo Pubblico (Town Hall), Cathedral Museum. Each has an entrance fee. All entrance fees are extra.