Siena Italy Travel Guide

Siena Travel Guide
A Vagabond Life

Siena Italy Travel Guide A Vagabond Life

Nestled within the rolling hills of Tuscany, Siena beckons travelers with its timeless charm, medieval ambiance, and cultural treasures. This enchanting city, steeped in history, traces its origins back to the Etruscan era, but it flourished during the Middle Ages as a powerful city-state. The historic center, a UNESCO World Heritage site, preserves the architectural splendor of this bygone era, with its winding cobblestone streets, Gothic cathedrals, and well-preserved medieval structures.

At the heart of Siena lies the magnificent Piazza del Campo, a shell-shaped square where the renowned Palio horse race captivates spectators. The iconic Torre del Mangia offers panoramic views, while the stunning Siena Cathedral, with its intricate facade and interior, stands as a testament to the city’s artistic prowess. Siena seamlessly blends art, history, and culture, providing an immersive experience that transports visitors to a bygone era. With its warm-hued buildings, delectable Tuscan cuisine, and a welcoming atmosphere, Siena embodies the essence of Italian allure, inviting discerning travelers to explore its captivating streets and revel in its timeless beauty.

Siena Table of Contents

Siena Map
Siena Italy Placeholder
Siena Italy

How To Get To Siena Italy

Getting To Siena

Cars are not allowed in the old city. Parking is available on the outskirts of the walls. be aware that during peak times parking will be difficult and very busy.


If travelling from one of the bigger nearby towns a bus maybe the most convenient way to get to Siena

From Florence – Departing regularly from the Florence bus station next to the Santa Maria Novella train station buses take about 11/2 hours.

From Rome –  Departing from Tiburtina station the bus journey takes approximately 3 hours. 


The Siena train station is 2km from the medieval city

Things To See & Do In Siena Italy

Piazza del Campo (Il Campo)

Siena Italy
Piazza del Campo

I have many happy memories of spending time in the Piazza del Campo or Il Campo as the locals call it. We would often sit in the piazza in the weak spring sun watch Siena go about its business.  Recognised as one of Europes great Medieval squares Il Campo is surrounded by the Palazzo Pubblico and its Torre del Mangia,  along with palazzi signorili. At the northwest edge is the beautiful Fonte Gaia. Wander down to the piazza in the evening and you will often find musician and performers. The Palio horse race is held in Piazza Pubblicca twice a year

Piazza Pubblico

Piazza Pubblico

The Piazza Pubblico was built in 1297 and housed the republican government, it is now the home of the local government. The Piazza Pubblico or Peoples Palace dominates the Piazza del Campo and is well worth a visit for its medieval architecture and frescoes.

Museo Civico

The Museo Civico or Civic Museum is on the first floor of the Palazzo Pubblico in the heart of medieval Siena. The Meseo Civico houses paintings as a social message for the common man along with fresco depicting good and bad government. Ity is a lovely place to wander for a few hours, and when I visited was a popular place for weddings.

Piccolomini Library

Housed inside the Siena Cathedral the Piccolomini Library was painted by the Perugian painter Pintoricchio  in 1502 for his patron, the cardinal of Siena, who wished to honour his uncle Pope Pius II who died in 1464. The Piccolomini Library features a series of amazing, colourful and very detailed frescoes.

 in Siena Italy

Torre del Mangia

Torre del Mangia

In Piazza del Campo right next to Piazza Pubblico the Torre del Mangia was built in 1338 and was once the tallest tower in medieval Europe. The marble loggia on the top, known as Cappella di Piazza, was added in 1352 as a vow for the Holy Virgin by the Sienese survivors from the Black Death. The tower is named for its first bell ringer who was well known for his love of food.

Siena Cathedral

Siena Cathedral

Oh what a stunning Duomo, built from pink, white and black marble the Siena Cathedral was just a short stroll from my apartment and I often wandered up to sit in the small piazza and gaze at this amazing Gothic marvel. It took over 200 hundred years to complete after building was halted when the black plague devastated the city.

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