Siena Travel Essentials


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Ideal duration: 2-3 days

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Siena Tourism

Capital of the province of Sienna in the region of Tuscany, Siena is located in central Tuscany and is surrounded by hills and valleys. The city has a magestic medieval charm and is scattered with relics from the age. Today, Siena flourishes as a centre of medieval and Renaissnace art and culture.

Nestling among the hills to the north the Chianti area between Florence and Siena is one of the most breathtaking countrysides in the world. These hills are characterised by olive groves and vineyards. The Val d' Arbia to the south, is rugged but cultivated and its colours dazzle the tourist. Siena's beauty draws exhilaration from visitors. To the west is the coast of Castiglione Della Pescaia and the nature reserve Maremma. Siena's city square, Piazza del Campo, is an imposing sight housing the Torre del Mangia, a tower signifying secular power and having the same height as the Siena Cathedral in order to show equal power distribution between the Church and state. One can see a lovely view of Siena from this tower that was built between 1338 to 1348. The Piazza del Duomo or the Siena Cathedral is another important attraction. The cathedral is known for its elaborate facade and mosaic floors with symbolic representations of tales from the Old Testament, sibyls etc. The Piccolomini altar houses a sculpture of Saint Paul by Michelangelo.

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Currency in Siena

Italy, a member of the European Union, adopted the Euro in 2002. Some businesses accept the dollar but it is not widely accepted.

Shopping in Siena

Via Banchi di Sopra is the main shopping street of Siena. The city is famous for its designer leather bags and other couture that is popular. Some of the brands found here are Benetton(the store in Siena has frescoed ceilings), Tezens, Intimissimi, Calzedonia for underwear, Dixie(a label from Florence) for the young, Scout(an American brand with an European touch), Replay are some options. Cortecci is a store that stocks all the famous labels of Italy (Gucci, Dolce and Gabbana etc). Aloe&Wolf near Piazza del Campo is known for its vintage stocks. If you are looking for budget shopping, you could check out a market close to Piazza Gramsci, every Wednesday from 7 am to 1 pm. It offers clothes and shoes, bags, jewellery etc. This may not be the best quality that Italy offers but prices are affordable. Warning: Please do be careful of the occasioanal petty thief. The Sienese are well-known for theor crafts and buying pottery in Siena as souvenirs is a god idea.

Nightlife in Siena

Siena is known for its medieval and Renaissance art as opposed to its nightlife. However, Siena does have some options to offer as far as nightlife is concerened. Un Tubo on Via Luparello is an option. The place holds jam sessions every Tuesday night. The club's appearance is upscale and sophisticated. Corte de Miracoli, near the Roman city gates, organizes dancing and other lessons in culture but at the same time offers DJs at weekends during autumn ansd spring.

History of Siena

Legend has it that Siena was founded by the sons of Remus Senio and Ascanio. Statues of a she-wolf feeding twins are common throughout the city. In the medieval and early Renaissance rise of the city state, this city became prosperous. Siena was a republic till 1555 when it surrendered to the Duchy of Florence which had become powerful under the Medicis and had made an alliance with the Spanish Crown. the Republican governement in Montalcino resisted until 1559. However, the Spanish king Felippe II ceded this city to the Grand Duchy of Tuscany as he owed large sums of money to which it remained until the Italian unification in the 19th century.

Language of Siena

Tuscan, Latin and Italian. One should not be intimidated by this however. Many Italians speak enough English so communicatin should not be a major problem.

Siena Customs

The Sienese are extremely proud of their town. One should never tell them that Florence or other Italian towns are more beautiful than Siena.

Religion of Siena

Siena is 98% Roman Catholic. Patron saints are St. Ansanus and Ambrose of Siena. Their fest days are on the 1st of Decmeber and 8th of October.

Daily Budget for Siena

One can safely say that the minimum daily cost for living in Tuscany is EUR 100. Out of this accomodation consists of the larget chunk, followed by food.

Exchanging Money in Siena

Using the ATM/Debit card is the best way to get a cheap exchange rate. Plastic money is acceptable all over Italy and getting cash exchanged is becoming harder.

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Siena, Italy

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FAQs on Siena

What is the best time to visit Siena?

Siena has a temperate climate. However, to experience the beauty of the Tuscan countryside, one should visit this region in May or June. As far as temperature is concerned, autumns are very pleasant. Centred around the weather, the city suddenly becomes more alive. Arts events dominate the calendar. From October however, rain showers start and the weather starts getting colder. However, spring brings better weather and this is the time for street festivals here. Summer temperatures vary from 27 degrees to 35 degree Celsius. Autumn temperatures vary from 20-25 degrees Celsius. Average temperatures in spring vary from 15-25 degrees Celsius.
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What are the places near Siena?

The top places near to Siena are Florence which is 50 km from Siena, Rome which is located 184 km from Siena, Bologna which is located 130 km from Siena, Venice which is located 248 km from Siena, Milan which is located 293 km from Siena

What are the things to do in Siena?

The top things to do in Siena are Piazza del Campo, Torra del Mangia, Siena Chapel, Battistero di San Giovanni, The Complex of Santa Maria della Scala, Palazzo Pubblico. You can see all the places to visit in Siena here

What are the top hotels in Siena?

There are 646 in Siena which can be booked through Holidify. The most popular hotels in Siena are Castello Del Poggiarello Di Stigliano, Tenuta La Santissima, Casa vacanze Aurora, CaNova, La Locaia, Palazzo Giorgi. You can see all the hotels in Siena here

What is the local food in Siena?

Tuscan food is known for its freshness. Beef and from the special Chianina cattle is generally used. Other delicacies of the region include pici, crostini neri, fagioli all'uccelletto, pasta e fagioli, pecorino cheese, truffles, and desserts like panforte, ricciarelli and cantucci. Tuscan wine is famous all over the world and is itself a marker of a sophistication.
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Siena Reviews

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Ushni Dasgupta

5 years ago
Siena's cobbled streets, town halls and squares are out of a medieval novel. I would definitely recommend visiting the Palazzo Pubblico. Siena is a shopper's heaven, although boutiques may be hard on (Read More) your wallets! Will recommend Piccolo Etruria for your stay, due to its convenient location. And you must try the Prosecco and gelato at Siena!
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