Day 7 in Tuscany – Siena, San Gimignano

Day 7 – Siena > lunch in Siena > San Gimignano > dinner in Florence

We booked a day tour to Siena and San Gimignano through Viator.com while we were having pizza at Lucca the day before. It was a last minute booking. Originally we were thinking to rent a car and drive around Tuscany ourselves but due to a multitude of reasons: we wanted an automatic car, the car pick up and drop off point seems to be far from where we stayed and not easily accessible, a toll for having to drive a car in the inner part of Florence, and also where to park the car overnight, we decided to book a tour. This tour did save us a lot of trouble in planning and sorted out the transportation and actually saved us a lot of added stress.

tuscany map
Map from http://www.italyguides.it/en/tuscany

DSC03964

Palazzo Salimbeni, Siena – a Gothic style buildingIMG_6124

Siena’s city symbol – the she-wolf feeding the twins 2014-10-21 12.06.38

Siena Cathedral – one of the most iconic buildings in Siena

We had lunch at Enoteca i Terzi in Siena before heading to San Gimignano in the afternoon. It is a cozy enoteca (wine bar) with good food. 2014-10-21 12.52.58 2014-10-21 13.12.39

We just ordered risotto and hand made pasta for lunch. The food was pretty good.

Enoteca i Terzi

Opening Hours: Mon to Sat 11:00-01:00; closed on Sunday

Address: Via dei Termini 7, Siena

http://www.enotecaiterzi.it/en/index.htm IMG_6138

Torre del Mangia (tower of Mangia), Siena

Torre del Mangia was the gathering point for the group. It was a pity that we could only spend a few hours in Siena as it seemed that there was a lot more to explore within the city. Most travelers tend to develop a strong preference for either Florence over Siena or vice versa. I have to admit that Florence is still my favourite city in Italy (based on all the cities I visited in Italy).

After Siena, we were heading to San Gimignano. It is a famous walled medieval hill town also known as the city of beautiful towers with 14 towers still standing. 2014-10-21 16.24.21

There are some souvenir shops in San Gimignano but most tourists would stop at the 2 famous gelato shops there. Gelateria di Piazza is one of them that claims to win the title of Gelato World Champion. It was the time of the day that we were craving for our daily gelato and we went straight to have our cup. IMG_6144 2014-10-21 16.30.21

The portion is quite generous.

Gelateria di Piazza

Address: Piazza della Cisterna 4, San Gimignano

http://www.gelateriadipiazza.com

Just when we finished our big gelato, we walked passed another gelato parlour that claims to be the best in the world. We were really full already from the gelato we just had and didn’t have the chance to try it. 2014-10-21 17.07.32

Gelateria dell’Olmo

Address: Piazza Della Cisterna 34, San Gimignano

http://www.gelateriadellolmo.com/Introduction/

We wanted to take a photo with all 14 towers but were told that it would not be possible unless we had some sort of drone, or were to be airlifted by one. . 2014-10-21 16.35.21 2014-10-21 16.44.27 IMG_6146 2014-10-21 17.00.03

It was quite relaxing to walk around San Gimignano and to enjoy the beautiful landscape of Tuscany. We left San Gimignano around sunset time and were dropped off in Florence. The bus ride took about 1hr and we were able to take a nap during the journey. It is definitely better than driving by ourselves and relying on the GPS, though I guess a lot less romantic.

We went to Trattoria Cibreo, one of the michelin bib gourmand restaurants in Florence for dinner. This restaurant is famous for their traditional Tuscan cuisine. We ordered the dishes recommended by the waiter. 2014-10-21 19.45.20

Porcini soup and potato flan 2014-10-21 20.06.06

The main – stuffed rabbit (seems to be a signature dish there) and bake fish in foil. It was my first time having rabbit and I didn’t really enjoy it, a bit too salty for my liking. Mr Map was especially disappointed, as he fondly remembered eating rabbit meat at a Belgium restaurant years ago. Maybe we should have just stuck with the normal meats 😛 2014-10-21 20.30.51

Dessert – Panna Cotta

There are many good reviews about this restaurant but I guess I prefer the less exotic Italian meal.

Trattoria Cibreo

Opening Hours: Tue to Sat – 12:00-14:00 & 19:00-22:00; Mon & Sun closed

Address: Via de’ Macci 122r, Florence

http://www.edizioniteatrodelsalecibreofirenze.it/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=908&Itemid=133

We had an enjoyable time in Florence and Tuscany but we were excited to go to Cinque Terre. Therefore, we were packing again and got ready for the next stop.

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