Travel Diary // Siena & San Gimignano

A trip to Tuscany had been a longtime goal for us. Unfortunately, we only had one day, so we had to make the most out of it. Our plan was to visit San Gimignano, Siena and Voltera, however, we didn't get to see Voltera and let me explain why.

Renting a Car
First of all, in order to visit all three towns in just one day we had to rent a car from Florence. Although we thought it would be something simple and quick to do, it was actually quite frustrating and time consuming. The car rental companies were actually bidding (!) the cars and they were blackmailing you that someone else is giving them a higher price so if you want the car you have to give them what they want, which was triple the price they had on their website. Shocking, right? It took us two (2) long and stressful hours to get the car, which means that we lost that time from our trip (bye bye Voltera). I don't know what to tell you on how to deal with that, I have no better solution, maybe check the timetables of public transportation or get the help of a local friend, if you have one.

San Gimignano
It took us 1.5 hours to get there from the center of Florence, the road was bumpy and quite narrow, quite similar to the greek ones... We parked outside the town, there are high walls around it and only local residents are allowed to drive their cars inside. The feeling is surreal. It's like you entered a time machine and took you back to the medieval period. The weather was lovely, the sun was shining and the scenery was so beautiful. We strolled around, took some photos of their lovely doors and windows and then sat at a cafe on the square to grab an orange juice and some coffee. We had planned to visit the Medieval and Criminal Torture Museum, but we were running out of time so we had to leave.

Our next stop was the very famous and beautiful medieval city of Siena and took us about 1 hour to get there from San Gimignano. Siena is also a walled city and the non-locals have to park their cars outside the walls. There are plenty of things that you can see here and it is important to know that, according to the Wikipedia the historic centre of Siena has been declared by UNESCO a World Heritage Site. First of all the shell shaped square, Piazza del Campo, which is part of the site for the Palio horse race, and the Torre del Mangia, the tallest tower in entire Italy standing 102 meters high from the ground. Siena also has a University, which is very important for the local economy. After walking around the city, taking pictures and getting lost in the labyrinthic streets, we realized that we were tired and hungry. We went back to Piazze del Campo and sat to a lovely cafe named Bar Il Palio, which was suggested by lovely Stefania from the blog Cool Chic Style Fashion. Suddenly, the weather changed, heavy clouds gathered above our heads, started drizzling and it was already getting dark. We also had to leave the car to a certain parking lot in Florence by 8.00pm otherwise we would be charged an extra half day... Right that moment, we knew that our visit to Voltera was not meant to happen, so we went for a quick gelato @ Venchi before heading back to Florence.

I would love to visit Tuscany again, hopefully for more days and more cities to see.
You can see more photos from our trip to Siena and San Gimignano over at my Instastories.

|barefoot duchess|

Photos via my Instagram