The Amazing City of Siena, Italy
To fully explore Italy, several trips are warranted. While my family had been to Italy previously during 2017, on that trip we focused primarily on the area around Rome and then the Amalfi coast region south of Naples. We embarked on a second trip in the Summer of 2019. While renting a villa outside Pienza, in the region of Tuscany, we visited Siena.
Siena is a marvelous walled city just to the North of what is considered the Val D’Orcia region of the Tuscan Province. Siena is directly north of Montalcino (Montalcino is famed for its age-worthy red wine Brunello di Montalcio, and its delicious “local” red Montalcino di rosso.) Every Summer, Siena has its impressive horse race in the largest piazza or square in the City, the Palio. The race has been run for centuries, and the various districts of the city compete against one another for the honor of winning the race. Each district is represented by abrightly-colored flag.
Siena is also famed for its Cathedral. This is the cathedral I most enjoyed visiting of many in Italy, and its striped columns, and inlaid marble floor patterns feel so modern, even today. In fact, these patterns and colors were the inspiration for many of Italy great fashion designers, and some of the colored stone incorporated into the Cathedral is no longer found on earth.
Siena should be on anyone’s list of spots to visit during a tour of Italy or, certainly, Tuscany. Many lovely villas are available in the countryside outside of town for rent by the week or month.