MORE INFO ABOUT AREA
Siena is a medieval town in Tuscany, 70 km South of Florence. It is best known for its Palio, the famous horse race held twice a year in Summer on July 2nd and August 16th, in the central square Piazza del Campo. You can see ten horses and riders, dressed in the respective colours, representing medieval city wards. They run for the main prize, the Palio. People around the world could have seen Siena and its Palio in the James Bond Movie, Quantum of Solace. Sienese people are very proud of their city and their traditions.
Siena was a wealthy, and warlike independent city-state during Middle Ages, until its final defeat by Florence. The beautiful Medieval buildings of Siena were never torn down and replaced with modern structures and that is the main reason for its medieval atmosphere. Some of the most famous places of Siena are: Piazza del Campo with its magnificent Palazzo Pubblico (municipality building), Pinacoteca (Picture gallery), Duomo and, just a few blocks away, the house where St. Catherine of Siena was born. Medieval Sienese art is unique and of great historical importance: Duccio di Buoninsegna, Simone Martini, and Ambrogio and Pietro Lorenzetti are just some of the famous artists who lived and worked in Siena.San Gimignano is a small medieval town in the province of Siena: the city is so famous for it’s architecture and a dozen of towers that Unesco has declared it a “World Heritage Site”. San Gimignano is also known for its white wine Vernaccia di San Gimignano, which is considered to be one of the most typical and ancient Italian wines. It is produced from the variety of Vernaccia grapes cultivated in the area. It contains 90 % Vernaccia with approximately 10 % other non aromatic approved white varieties.
HOW TO REACH AREA
Siena is situated in the heart of Tuscany and it is very easy to reach the town by car, train or bus as well as by plane. There is a very convenient shuttle bus transfer from Vespucci Airpot in Florence or Galileo Galilei Airport in Pisa.
If you prefer to travel by car, the fastest way is to take the Firenze-Siena (68 km) SS 2 toll-free highway. To go to San Gimignano simply take the Poggibonsi Nord exit and follow the directions. Parking space is available outside the town walls. Those coming from the South need to take the A1 highway (Rome-Florence) and exit at Valdichiana.
Siena's train station is located in via Carlo Rosselli (2 km far from Siena’s historical centre) connecting Empoli, Florence, Chiusi, Grosseto etc. If arriving from North, trains go directly from Florence (Santa Maria Novella station) to Siena. From the South there are direct train connections with Siena from Chiusi and Grosseto. From Pisa it's necessary to take a train to Empoli and then take the connection to Siena. San Gimignano is on the hill and there is no train station but it's possible to buy a ticket to Poggibonsi and then take a bus to San Gimignano. Reaching San Gimignano from Florence the better way is to take a train to Empoli and then change the bus to reach san Gimignano. There are also trains to Poggibonsi but they are not so frequent.Even though not as picturesque as by the train, getting to Siena by bus is by far the easiest way. Take the SITA bus (located to the west of Santa Maria Novella). Piazza Garibaldi is 1hr 20 minutes away. There are also connections from Rome (3 hours) and other surrounding cities. The bus station is right outside the Airport area and buses go directly to the Siena’s town centre.
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