As Siena is about 45 minutes by car from where we are staying in Colordesoli, it clearly is a must visit on our list of hill towns. It is a well-known stop on most tourists’ travels throughout Tuscany, as it generates in excess of 160,000 visits per year. Even during the pre-season, it was clearly very busy, as can be seen in the image of the Piazza del Campo.
We found a convenient parking lot near Santa Caterina; parking lots are well-indicated, if you come into Sienna from the west side with signage that shows how many spots are still open in the parking lot. A short uphill trek from our parking lot, got us to the escalators into the center of town. These escalators took us up about 9 floors to within a 100 meters or so from the Siena Cathedral.
This catedral is another example of the usage of black and white marble in construction, just like the one in Volterra. Our first stop was the Piazza del Campo, famous for the Palio horse race, which is run twice a year (early July and mid August); I can only imagine what a madhouse it will be during those races.
Sauntering around the streets that surround the Piazza del Campo, it is easy to keep your bearings, as many of the streets have little alleys that lead back to the main square. Lots of these streets have great shopping opportunities and fantastic leather products of excellent quality.
Siena is also well-known for its cuisine, and I have to say that it lived up to it, as lunch was truly outstanding!
Overall, I think that Siena was well worth the visit, particularly, as the crowds started thinning out after lunch. A lovely city with great food and good places to visit!