Private Siena walking tour

Siena - Duomo - side view
Siena - Piazza del Campo  - panoramaSiena - Palazzo PubblicoSiena - Piazza del Campo - view from the topSiena - detailSiena - viewSiena - Piazza del Campo  - viewSiena - San Domenico - FrescoesSiena - San Domenico - InteriorSiena  - San Domenico - View

From: $35.28

TOUR DURATION

3 Hours

START TIME

09:00 AM

11:00 AM

02:00 PM

Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat, Sun

MEETING POINT

San Domenico Church , more details at booking

Tour
Itinerary
Tour
Inclusions
Tour
Information

 

TOUR ITINERARY

Your Private Siena Walking Tour will begin with a visit to the Basilica of San Domenico, a 13th century Gothic church much frequented for its venerated relics of Saint Catherine, patron saint of Italy and Europe.

Your tour will continue to the Banca Monte dei Paschi, a magnificent palace-like bank that was founded in 1472; it is considered to be the oldest surviving bank in Europe and is in fact still active.

From here, your guide will walk you to the nearby Piazza del Campo, a shell-shaped square that is the undoubted center of Siena’s vibrant city life. As your guide will explain, this is where the famed and exhilarating Palio horse race takes place twice a year. Ten representatives from the seventeen districts of Siena will ride bareback around the Piazza at breakneck speeds for the chance to win the Palio.

Following a brief stop at the Palazzo Chigi-Saracini, which houses the Accademia Musicale Chigiana, you will arrive at the Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption, also known as the Duomo di Siena. This marvelous medieval cathedral made of white marble is one of Siena’s most impressive architectural wonders, a mixture of Classical, French Gothic and Tuscan Romanesque styles.

From here you will be free to continue to explore on your own this wonderful city!

TOUR INCLUSIONS

– Expert local guide at disposal

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

Siena historical city centre

– Piazza del Campo

– San Domenico Church

– Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
– Confirmation will be received at time of booking

– Voucher and detailed operator information, including local emergency numbers will be received three weeks before the date of your tour.

– Adult pricing applies to all travelers.

– The dress code for men and women is strictly enforced in Churches. No shorts, bare shoulders or miniskirts.

Departure point:

San Domenico church

Duration:

3 hours

Return details:

Duomo di Siena

Private Montalcino & Brunello Wine Tour

Siena- Landscape
Montalcino - tettiBrunello Montalcino - BottlesTuscany - landscapeMontalcino - ViewMontalcino - San Antimo - ViewMontalcino - viewMontalcino - panoramaBrunello di Montalcino - wineyardsSiena - Clay Hills

From: $88.20

TOUR DURATION

4 Hours

START TIME

09:00 AM

02:00 PM

Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat, Sun

MEETING POINT

Pick up at your Hotel, more details at booking

Tour
Itinerary
Tour
Inclusions
Tour
Information

 

TOUR ITINERARY

Your driver will meet you at your hotel to take you on your full day excursion to the medieval town of Montalcino, travelling through the land that produces the fine Brunello wine.

You will be driven via Brunello Road, then through the dusty and narrow wandering roads that disappear from view amidst the meandering clay hills of Siena. Old farmhouses surrounded by ancient Cyprus trees stand as a testimonial to an agricultural past. Before arriving to Montalcino, you will make a brief stop to visit the Siena Clay Hills, a strange moon-like landscape that is the subject of many photos and artworks in Tuscany.

Continue to the Abbey of Sant’Antimo, an impressive monastery whose true origins are wrapped in mystery. Discover its fascinating architecture and religious treasures, and even assist with the Gregorian Melodies. Get back to your driver to finally reach Montalcino, a charming fortified hilltop town best known for its medieval architecture and production of the prestigious Brunello wine. This wine is a medium bodied dark red with a fruity aroma and dark, peppery notes. You will have the opportunity to visit one of Montalcino’s famous wineries where you will enjoy a wine tasting accompanied by local cheeses and cold cuts.

TOUR INCLUSIONS

– Round trip transportation with private car

– Expert English speaking driver and guide

– Visit of Abbey of St Antimo

– Visit of Montalcino

– Wine  Tasting and snack in a local wine estate

-Wine tasting of Brunello wine, Altero wine  and Madre wine

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

– Montalcino

– Val d’Orcia

– Abbey of St Antimo

– Visit of local Brunello vineyard and cellars

– Brunello wine tasting and other two local wines

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
– Confirmation will be received at time of booking

– Voucher and detailed operator information, including local emergency numbers will be received three weeks before the date of your tour.

– Adult pricing applies to all travelers.

– The dress code for men and women is strictly enforced in Churches. No shorts, bare shoulders or miniskirts.

Departure point:

Pick-up at your accommodation

Duration:
4 hours

Return details:
Drop-off at your Accommodation

Private Montepulciano & Nobile Wine Tour

Montepulciano - piazza
Montepulciano - PiazzaMontepulciano - San Biagio  - from topMontepulciano - panoramaNobile MontepulcianoMontepulciano - Gattavecchi vineryMontepulciano - SquareVino Nobile - vignetoVino Nobile - vineyard

From: $88.20

 

TOUR DURATION

4 Hours

START TIME

09:00 AM & 02:00 PM

Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat, Sun

MEETING POINT

Pick-up at your hotel, more details at booking

Tour
Itinerary
Tour
Inclusions
Tour
Information

 

TOUR ITINERARY

Your driver will meet you at your hotel to take you on your full day excursion to the medieval town of Montepulciano.

Montepulciano, an ancient fortified town residing at the top of a large hill, is famous for both its beautiful architecture and its delicious wine. Its antique taverns and cafes are, to this day, meeting places for various artists from all over the world. Its atmosphere is steeped in a rich history and tradition while its churches and palaces protect a wealth of artworks from masters of ages past.

This charming town is also the home of the distinguished Vino Nobile, one of Italy’s most prized wines. It is a dark red wine with a fruity aroma, reminiscent of cherries and plums, and a medium body. Walking along the narrow streets or main roads of Montepulciano, you will quite likely be able to catch its delicate aroma wafting from a wine shop or restaurant.

After some time spent exploring the town, you will be able to experience the true character of the region through a tour of a local winery. This tour will end with a wine tasting at Cantine Gattavecchi, one of the oldest cellars of Montepulciano. During the tasting, you will be offered two local wines and will be also be served some local cheese and cold cuts.

Your driver will return you to your hotel at the end of the excursion.

TOUR INCLUSIONS

– Round trip transportation with private car

– Expert English speaking driver and guide

– Visit of Montepulciano

– Wine tasting and light lunch at Cantine Gattavecchi

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

– Tuscany countryside

– Montepulciano

– Visit of Cantine Gattavecchi

– Vine tasting of Nobile Wine

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
– Confirmation will be received at time of booking

– Voucher and detailed operator information, including local emergency numbers will be received three weeks before the date of your tour.

– Adult pricing applies to all travelers.

– The dress code for men and women is strictly enforced in Churches. No shorts, bare shoulders or miniskirts.

Departure point:

Pick-up at your accommodation

Duration:
4 hours

Return details:
Drop-off at your Accommodation

Private Siena & San Gimignano Tour

Siena - Palazzo Pubblico
Siena - Duomo - side viewSiena  - Duomo - top viewSiena - Palio  - sbandieratoreSiena - TettiSan Gimignano - panoramaSan Gimignano - ChurchSan Gimignano - palazziSiena - Piazza del Campo - view from the topSiena - detailSiena  - San Domenico - ViewSiena - San Domenico - InteriorSiena - San Domenico - Frescoes

From: $94.08

tour duration

8 Hours

start time

09:00 AM

Mon, Tue, Wed, Thu, Fri, Sat, Sun

meeting point

Pick-up at your hotel, more details at booking

Tour
Itinerary
Tour
Inclusions
Tour
Information

 

TOUR ITINERARY

This full day excursion will take you on a fantastic journey to discover two of the most beautiful medieval towns of Tuscany: Siena and San Gimignano. Your first stop will be Siena which, along with Florence and Pisa, is one of the leading art cities in Tuscany. Throughout the centuries, this city has managed to preserve its handsome medieval character.

Your tour will begin with a visit to the Basilica of San Domenico, a 13th century Gothic church much frequented for its venerated relics of Saint Catherine, patron saint of Italy and Europe. You will continue to the Banca Monte dei Paschi, a magnificent palace-like bank that was founded in 1472; it is considered to be the oldest surviving bank in Europe and is in fact still active. From here, you will walk to the nearby Piazza del Campo, a shell-shaped square that is the undoubted center of Siena’s vibrant city life. As your guide will explain, this is where the famed and exhilarating Palio horse race takes place twice a year. Ten representatives from the seventeen districts of Siena will ride bareback around the Piazza at breakneck speeds for the chance to win the Palio. Following a brief stop at the Palazzo Chigi-Saracini, which houses the Accademia Musicale Chigiana, you will arrive at the Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption, also known as the Duomo di Siena. This marvelous medieval cathedral made of white marble is one of Siena’s most impressive architectural wonders, a mixture of Classical, French Gothic and Tuscan Romanesque styles.

From here, you will have some free time in Siena. You can either keep exploring the city on your own or choose to have lunch in one of the delicious restaurants in the area. Just be sure to return on time to continue your tour to San Gimignano!

The town’s fourteen medieval towers are visible from a great distance, giving the hilltop settlement a remarkable and unforgettable skyline. Like Siena, San Gimignano is one of the best preserved medieval towns in Tuscany, boasting beautiful buildings such as churches and palazzos. The tour will take you to the wonderfully preserved main square called the Piazza della Cisterna, and there you will visit the 13th century the Palazzo del Popolo, San Gimignano’s town hall.

At the end of your visit meet your driver again to return to your accommodation in Florence.

TOUR INCLUSIONS

– Round trip transportation with private car

– Expert English speaking driver and guide

– Visit of Siena

– Visit of San Gimignano

TOUR HIGHLIGHTS

– Tuscany Landscapes

– Siena

– Piazza del Campo

– San Domenico Church

– Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption

– Piazza della Cisterna

– Palazzo del Popolo

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
– Confirmation will be received at time of booking

– Voucher and detailed operator information, including local emergency numbers will be received three weeks before the date of your tour.

– Adult pricing applies to all travelers.

– The dress code for men and women is strictly enforced in Churches. No shorts, bare shoulders or miniskirts.

Departure point:

Pick-up at your accommodation

Duration:
8 hours

Return details:
Drop-off at your Accommodation

Abbey of Sant’Antimo

Montalcino - San Antimo - View
Sant'Antimo Abbey - View

Located just a few miles from Montalcino is a large and mysterious building whose true origins are still obscure today. The Abbey of Sant'Antimo is believed to have been built some time during Late Antiquity, with the earliest document confirming its existence dating from the 800s. The current church was actually built in the early 12th century at the bequest of Count Bernardo degli Ardengheschi.

The church quickly became one of the biggest powers in the area, having authority over 38 local churches and owning several hundreds of acres of farmland throughout Tuscany; the church even had control of the Castle of Montalcino, which both protected the area and housed the abbot. The abbey began to decline a century later, due primarily to Siena’s aggressive expansionism and the loss of much of its territory, including Montalcino. The abbey’s decline continued into the 15th century, despite the Church’s attempts at reviving it; it was completely abandoned and left to decay until the 19th century, eventually getting restored in the 1870s. Today, the abbey has resumed function and houses a new religious community of Canons Regular of the Order of Premontre.

Things to see

The building is Carolingian in architecture, with French and Italian influences throughout. Some of the most notable highlights are the frescoes by Giovanni d’Asciano, the French-inspired groin vaulted ambulatory, the crypt and, above all, the capital with Daniel and the Lions.

Siena Clay hills

Tuscany - Farmhouse
Siena- LandscapeSiena - Clay HillsTuscany - landscapeSiena - Clay Hills -  viewSiena - Clay Hills - landscapeSiena- Clay Hills - day view

Just south of Siena is a particular area called the Crete Senesi, or Sienese Clay Hills. This range of hills is composed of grey clay which gives the landscape an odd, moon-like appearance, broken only by a few lonely cypress and oak trees, and a few isolated farms.

The sediments of clay date back to the Pliocene, when the area was covered by sea between 2.5 and 4.5 million years ago. Now, the area is a gorgeous touristic attraction that is also famous for its production of the rare white truffle.

Things to see

The closest towns in the area are Asciano, a well preserved medieval village, and San Giovanni d’Asso, a small medieval hamlet guarded by a large castle. Asciano is known for its Etruscan Museum, housed in the Gothic Church of San Bernardino, as well as the Romanesque Basilica of Sant’Agata, which houses the Museum of Sacred Art and the Archeological Museum. The impressive castle that overlooks the hills around San Giovanni d’Asso houses the Truffle Museum, and is also the home of a festival that celebrates the history and harvest of the local truffles.

Montalcino

Montalcino - tetti
Siena- LandscapeMontalcino - viewMontalcino - panoramaMontalcino - ViewBrunello Montalcino - BottlesMontalcino - San Antimo - View

Not far from Siena is another, smaller medieval hilltop town by the name of Montalcino, famous above all for its production of Brunello wine.

Like most of the towns in the area, Montalcino was originally an Etruscan settlement that remained relatively small until a sudden population growth in the 10th century. In the middle ages, Montalcino gained some importance due to its location on Via Frencigena, an ancient and important Roman road, as well as its production of quality leather goods. The 14th to 16th centuries were tumultuous, with the town getting caught between the warring Florence and Siena, as well as the various battles between the local noble families. Montalcino was eventually conquered by the Florentine Republic in the mid 16th century and remained under their control until the unification of Italy. Today, Montalcino is very well known for its production of Brunello wine, made from the Sangiovese Grosso grapes that are cultivated in the area surrounding the town.

Things to see

Aside from its delicious wine, Montalcino also offers some fascinating sights such as the medieval Fortress that dominates the highest point in town and offers a stunning panorama from its towers. There is also the Church of Sant’Agostino, an imposing Gothic style religious structure from the 13th century, and whose beautiful cloisters were later added in the 15th century. Finally, a little outside of the town is large and mysterious Abbey of Sant’Antimo, whose true origins are still obscure today.
Brunello wine

Made from the Brunello clone of the Sangiovese grape, these red wines are among the most complex and rich expressions of Sangiovese. The soils in these hillside vineyards yield robust, voluptuous wines with great depth and aging potential. Notes of leather, earth, plums, and spices are typical. Brunello is the most tannic and the most potentially age-worthy expression of Sangiovese. Rosso di Montalcino, however, is a much more approachable red. Rosso is what Italians drink while they wait for their Brunello to mature.

Montepulciano

Montepulciano - Piazza
Montepulciano - San Biagio  - from topMontepulciano - panoramaMontepulciano - SquareNobile MontepulcianoVino Nobile - vignetoVino Nobile - vineyard

Situated just southeast of Siena is a small medieval hill town by the name of Montepulciano, famous for its food and wine. Particularly, the town produces Vino Nobile, “noble wine”, which is a delicious red wine renowned the world over.

Originally an Etruscan settlement, it eventually became a small Roman town that served as a garrison for road patrols. Following the collapse of the Roman Empire, Montepulciano was ruled by the Lombards, who turned the town into a religious center. The town’s medieval period is marked by constant warring between the surrounding Republics and the local noble families. Montepulciano eventually flourished in the 15th and 16th centuries, with famous local architects such as Giacomo Barozzi and Baldassarre Peruzzi building palaces and other important structures, bringing great beauty to the town. Some of the main sights now are the Palazzo Comunale, the town hall designed in the same style as Florence’s, Palazzo Tarugi, and the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, also called the Duomo of Montepulciano.

Things to see

Today, Montepulciano is an important agricultural centre, focusing especially on the cultivation of Montepulciano grapes for the various wine productions in the area, the most famous of which is the Vino Nobile.
Nobile wine

The Vino Nobile is a rich red wine produced around Montepulciano, in Tuscany. It is composed primarily from the San Giovese grape which is cultivated in the vineyards around the town, and is listed under the DOCG label of quality.

The Vino Nobile has a bright ruby red color and a rich texture. Refined aromas of cherry and plum follow through to a full-bodied palate, with soft, round tannins and a flavorful finish.

Basilica San Domenico – Siena

Siena  - San Domenico - View
Siena - San Domenico - InteriorSiena - San Domenico - Frescoes

The Basilica of San Domenico, also known as Basilica Cateriniana, is a prominent church in the medieval town of Siena. Built in the 13th century, it was subsequently expanded in the 14th century, resulting in the Gothic appearance it has now. Unfortunately, aspects of its architecture and structure were subsequently destroyed by fires, with further damage resulting from military occupation in the mid 1500s.

Points of interest

Although aesthetically simple inside and out when compared to the Duomo di Siena, near Piazza del Campo, the Basilica of San Domenico holds several important treasures and artworks. These include beautiful religious paintings and frescoes by several local masters, marble altars and even a Gothic style crypt. Most important however are several relics of Saint Catherine of Siena, whose name the church takes.

Palio di Siena

Siena - Palio  - sbandieratore
Siena - Palio - particularSiena - Palio - horsesSiena  - Palio - spalti

Famous the world over, the Palio di Siena is a horse race held biyearly during the summer months of July and August. Ten horses and riders wearing the colors of their “contrada” (district of Siena) race around the Piazza del Campo three times at breakneck speeds; the winner is the first horse to cross the finish line, with or without its rider.

Things to see

Not be mistaken as a simple race, the Palio di Siena is an ancient tradition dating back from the medieval period. To this day, the various contrade passionately compete against one another to win the honor of receiving the “palio” (a painted silk banner). Each race is preceded by an elaborate pageant called the Corteo Storico, where various figures dressed in medieval costumes parade and give mounted demonstrations.

Piazza del Campo

Siena - Piazza del Campo - view from the top
Siena - Piazza del Campo  - panoramaSiena - Palazzo PubblicoSiena - Piazza del Campo  - view

Possibly one of the most famous and beautiful medieval squares in Italy is the Piazza del Campo, found in Siena. The shell-shaped piazza is bordered by the Palazzo Pubblico with its bell tower, Torre del Mangia, as well as several ancient palazzos and the Fonte Gaia, a white marble fountain. Piazza del Campo is also renowned for the Palio di Siena, an important horse race which occurs twice a year and takes place around the edges of the piazza.

Points of interest

Piazza del Campo has been used as a marketplace since at least the 12th century, when the town was still young and the space was still devoid of its landmarks today. It was paved with red bricks in the mid 14th century to better suit the square and its surrounding palaces.

Fonte Gaia, the fountain located in the northwest edge of the piazza, was built in the early 15th century over an existing, earlier fountain. The current one has beautiful bas-reliefs of the Madonna, the seven virtues of the Christian faith, and other figures.

Siena

Siena - Duomo - side view
Siena - Piazza del Campo - view from the topSiena - Piazza del Campo  - panoramaSiena - San Domenico - InteriorSiena - Palazzo PubblicoSiena - viewSiena - Piazza del Campo  - viewSiena  - Duomo - top viewSiena - San Domenico - FrescoesSiena  - San Domenico - View

Probably the most famous medieval town in the Tuscan countryside, Siena offers a wealth of culture, art and cuisine. The town is also renowned for holding the always exhilarating Palio, a historical horse race held twice a year.

Originally an Etruscan settlement, it later became a small Roman town which unfortunately did not prosper under the Roman Empire due to its isolation. It was not until the 4th century, when the Lombards invaded, that Siena began to grow. The town’s medieval period saw the construction of many churches, houses and fortifications that have been wonderfully preserved and can be visited today. Because of its beauty and history, Siena was listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1995.

Things to see

The Piazza del Campo is the famed shell-shaped town square that hosts the Palio horse race. It also houses the Palazzo Pubblico and the Torre del Mangia, two stunning examples of Sienese medieval architecture. The Duomo di Siena, located near Piazza del Campo, is a beautiful 12th century Romanesque-Gothic cathedral housing an impressive collection of artworks. These include the famed lion-decorated pulpit by Nicola Pisano, perfectly preserved Renaissance frescos by Domenico Ghirlandaio, and bas-reliefs by Donatello, Lorenzo Ghiberti and Jacopo della Quercia.

The lush hilly countryside that surrounds Siena is also well worth exploring. Perhaps consider stopping in one of restaurants in town to taste the delicious local cuisine and try some of the wines from the area.