San Gimignano & Siena
A day of Medieval wonder in the heart of Tuscany.
A NOTE ABOUT DRIVING TIMES
While Siena is amazing it is quite far from Livorno (2 hrs). This excursion involves about 4.5 hours on the road. For a less expensive service with less driving we suggest San Gimignano & Volterra. Volterra is also wonderfully Medieval and surrounded by picturesque Tuscan countryside.
Typically we stop in San Gimignano first, when crowds are fewer, and stay for 60-90 minutes, which is actually a decent amount of time to have a look around.
- 08.00 pick up at the ship
- 08.00-09.30 drive to San Gimignano
- 09.30-11.00 visit San Gimignano
- 11.00-12.00 drive to Siena
- 12.00-15.00 visit Siena
- 15.00-17.00 drive back to port
To reach San Gimignano we will pass through the most wonderful Tuscan countryside — classic rolling hills, neatly-rowed vineyards and silvery-green olive groves, a living picture postcard!
San Gimignano, “the Manhattan of Tuscany”, is best known for its watchtowers that were a display of power and prosperity in Medieval times. Although only 14 of San Gimignano’s original 76 towers remain the effect is still dramatic and will give you lots of great photo opps.
Take your time strolling the narrow cobbled streets and open piazzas, and be prepared to step back in time. Art lovers may wish to step into the church of Sant’Agostino where they will find a substantial selection of works by some of Italy’s major Renaissance painters. San Gimignano is also home to award-winning gelato; look for it in the main piazza.
Some people say Siena is the most beautiful city in Tuscany. The centre is dominated by Piazza del Campo, vast and shaped like a fan, which is the core of Siena’s civic life. Here you will want to tarry a while, and if it rains, consider yourself lucky! You will get to see magic patterns of rainwater descending the cleverly laid paving stones.
Architecture buffs will appreciate Siena’s great cathedral, begun in the 12th century in the Romanesque style but transformed in the 13th century into one of the finest examples of Italian Gothic. Equally as impressive is basilica San Domenico, austere and comparatively unadorned, but offering visitors the opportunity to view remains of Santa Caterina that are enshrined within.
Language aficionados will know that Tuscany is the birthplace of the modern Italian language — and in Siena you will find the purest spoken Italian (no regional accent).
Siena also serves as a market for the surrounding agricultural area which produces cattle, cereal grains, olives, and, above all, its Chianti wines.
DURATION: 9 hrs
OTHER COSTS & NOTES
- CHURCH DRESS CODE
Proper attire is required to enter churches (bare shoulders must be covered and shorts/skirts must come down to your knees).
look for other excursions from Livorno
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- Authentic Tuscany (countryside, villages, artisan cheese & pasta)
- Chianti Winery Tour & Tasting
- Chianti’s Charming Villages
- Cinque Terre
- Cinque Terre & Pisa
- Cooking Class in Tuscany
- Cool Castles & Awesome Art (a family-friendly alternative to Cinque Terre)
- Easy Cinque Terre
- Florence & Lucca
- Florence & Pisa
- Florence & Pisa plus a taste of Chianti
- Florence & San Gimignano
- Florence & The Mall
- Florence for Kids & Pisa
- Lucca & Pisa (7 hrs)
- Lucca & Pisa + winery in Montecarlo
- Lucca & San Gimignano or Volterra + optional winery
- Lucca half day (4 hrs)
- Pisa half day (4 hrs)
- San Gimignano & Siena
- San Gimignano & Volterra + optional winery
- Volterra (5-7 hrs)
- Volterra & Pisa + optional winery
- Volterra, Bolgheri & the Super Tuscan wine region