Siena, the soul of Tuscany

Siena, Italy. Photo by: Dean Ayres http://www.flickr.com/photos/deano/2683065671/

Siena, the soul of Tuscany

July 11, 2010  |  Italy  |  No Comments

It is probably best known for a medieval horse race, Il Palio, conducted for the last 350 years twice in the summer (on June 2nd and August 16th) around the centre of Siena’s beautiful “Campo” square. Palio is a wonderful experience for eveyone but can be quite impenetrable for the visitors. For many, is a once in a lifetime experience.

Besides Il Palio, it is certainly worth seeing Duomo’s Cathedral (I recommend visiting the Piccolomino library -hidden behind a small door-, and going for mass in this, probably, Tuscany’s best Cathedral). You can also climb on top of the Torre di Mangia, where you’ll enjoy a beautiful panorama of the Sienese city center and tuscan countryside. Apart from this, you should simply sit on the Piazza del Campo sipping wine and watch the world go by 🙂

Interesting links: Siena, Things to do
These are some of the highest ranked books in Amazon about the Tuscany, one of the best places in the world:

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Lucca, a beautiful town in the Tuscany

Photo by: http://pearloftuscany.wordpress.com/

Lucca, a beautiful town in the Tuscany

July 11, 2010  |  Italy  |  3 Comments

A 30 minutes drive from Pisa or the mediterranean sea you’ll find Lucca, one of the best places to visit in Tuscany and one of the best places in the world. An enormously thick 15th-century wall (on top of which you can walk or cycle and enjoy nice views of the town), protects some of Italy’s finest medieval architecture.

Besides the Duomo of San Martino or the Church of San Frediano, I’d suggest simply walking down the streets and enjoying the multiple palaces, have a superb cafe at any of the tiny bars, an ice cream at the wonderful italian gelaterias or having dinner late at night at any of the multiple romantic restaurants. Don’t forget to visit Piazza dell’Anfiteatro, a beautiful circle square that used to shelter the roman spectacles, and climb the 130 ft. Guinigi tower on top of which you’ll enjoy the best views of Lucca… under the shade of an oak tree!! Yes, an oak tree on top of the tower 🙂
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Pisa, more than the famous leaning tower

Pisa, more than the famous leaning tower

July 11, 2010  |  Italy  |  12 Comments

Pisa is one of the best places to visit in Tuscany and one of the best places in the world because of its enormous artistic wealth, with one of the most memorable squares you will ever see: the Piazza del Duomo (a.k.a. Square of Miracles) with the Duomo, the Monumental Cemetery, the Baptistry and the famous leaning Tower… all together!. It’s an enormous square with plenty of tourists… but it’s worth a visit.
But Pisa offers more than just a 2 hour visit to the square. I had time, so I stayed overnight and I discovered a more peaceful town in a romantic voyage through the centuries along the Lungarnos, the noble streets beside the river Arno.
Wikipedia
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San Gimignano, the medieval Manhattan in the Tuscany

San Gimignano, the medieval Manhattan in the Tuscany

July 11, 2010  |  Italy  |  5 Comments

San Gimignano is one of the best places to visit in Tuscany and one of the best places in the world. Situated on a hill, surrounded by the lovely Tuscan countryside, San Gimignamo is a 10th century town that is mainly famous for its medieval towers.
Very crowded in summer and on weekends with tourists coming from Florence (it gets really annoying, trust me). I recommend staying overnight and having dinner in any of the small medieval restaurants, where you can enjoy a good Italian food and an excellent local wine. Early in the next morning, you can see the best views from Torre Grossa, in Podesta’s Palace.
Links of interest:
http://www.sangimignano.net/
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/San_Gimignano
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Best places to visit in Tuscany

Photo by PictFactory http://www.flickr.com/photos/pictfactory/2795501407/in/photostream/

Best places to visit in Tuscany

July 11, 2010  |  Italy  |  No Comments

One of the best places to visit in Europe is Tuscany, thanks to, probably, the greatest repository of art, its renowned history, its wonderful landscapes (with sweet hills, tall cypress trees and superb bays overlooking the sea) and its famous food and wine.

Among all the beautiful towns, I’d highlight Florence (the capital of art), Lucca (a town full of secrets), San Gimignano (the medieval manhattan in the Tuscany), Pisa (more than the famous leaning tower) and Siena (the soul of Tuscany)

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These are some of the highest ranked books in Amazon about the Tuscany:

Links of interest: