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What to do in San Gimignano

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London, United...
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What to do in San Gimignano

Hi :-)

Im going to Siena for 2 nights / 3 days and i was wondering if i should go to San Gimignano...what do you see/ do there?

Is it easy to get there by public transport?

Thanks a lot.

Houston, TX
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1. Re: What to do in San Gimignano

SG is one of my favorite places. It is a perfect stop to chill out, eat fabulous gelato and try to make the weekly outdoor market. For a town of its size, they have one of the most wonderful contemporary art galleries that I've ever been in, right on the main tourist road in town.

When you walk to the little central piazza, there is always a line of Italian waiting for some divine pizza. OMG, was it fantastic!

We had such a lovely room in SG with ceiling frescoes across a high vaulted ceiling. If you end up looking for a hotel, let me know and I'll dig out the info from a travel journal.

We rented a car, hearing that Lucca was so fantastic. After checking out of our SG hotel, we drove to Lucca. Parked outside hthe walls, of course, and walked in to explore. We felt it was too big and touristy and got back in our car after a few hours in Lucca. We drove back to SG, begging for our room back before they closed the front desk around midnight!

Enjoy,

Lana

Vancouver, Canada
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2. Re: What to do in San Gimignano

SG usually gets a lot of tour groups bused in during the day, but they leave at night and ownership of the town returns to the locals... and to the few tourists savvy enough to stick around. Even if you're staying in Siena (which is similar in this regard), try to work your schedule so you can stay in SG late, for the evening passagiata and dinner. You won't regret it.

Norwich, Norfolk, Uk
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3. Re: What to do in San Gimignano

You thought Lucca was more touristy than San Gimignano? Gosh, never heard that one before!

Norwich, Norfolk, Uk
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4. Re: What to do in San Gimignano

To answer your question though. Yes, you can easily visit San Gimignano from Siena by bus. It is a small town, one to stroll around and see what you find. There are some lovely piazzas and churches, don't miss the Collegiata and Sant'Agostino. There is an art gallery in the Palazzo Pubblico and apparently a torture museum and another museum housing a reconstruction of the town in the 13th and 14th centuries (I've not been to either of these so can't say what they are like). You can climb the tallest tower and walk to the edge of town to enjoy some lovely views and the Rocca.

So yes, plenty to keep you occupied for a few hours. If you are going anywhere near high season though, it will be heaving with tourists, so if you can do as suggested above and stay a little later than most of the day trippers, you will be glad you did.

London, United...
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5. Re: What to do in San Gimignano

Thank you all for your responses :-)

I am going there next week...

will go and I will stay until late!!!

Denver, Colorado
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6. Re: What to do in San Gimignano

LANAGO - What was the name of the place you stayed at in SG? We are looking for suggestions. Thanks!

Chicago
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7. Re: What to do in San Gimignano

Loved your posting. Why did you feel so strongly about not missing the Collegiata and Sant'Agostino?

nyc
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8. Re: What to do in San Gimignano

I can tell you about the museum Peggypatch mentioned that has a reconstruction of the medieval town. It is called San Gimignano 1300 and my wife, 11-year old son, and I enjoyed it a great deal. It is small and will take you less than an hour to complete, and during that time you get a personal tour, in English, by a member of the staff. It was a very nice way to learn some history and to ask some questions.

Houston, TX
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9. Re: What to do in San Gimignano

Ciao, megrooskie,

I'm away from home right now where my travel journals are located. I'll try to get the name of the hotel we stayed in in SG. I usually write the wrtie and room numbers, too, so I'll post back with all that info once I locate it.

A well-regarded contemporary art gallery is there and I'll get that info posted here soon as well.

The SG torture museum was a bizarre little place. Creepy and fascinating!.

I so enjoyed SG. Some of the best gelato I've ever eaten and the pizza-by-the-slice place in the piazza that the locals line up for every day-OMG, delicious!

I bought a beautiful 14k/sterling handmade necklace at the local silversmith's shop there. (This last trip to SG, his shop closed, but he had a few items at the replacement shop--perhaps he can be located, as he was born/reared in SG). My friend bought a couple of costume jewelry necklaces at another shop run by a delightful woman (I think she was British) that she wears with her suits to court and they look great. Still wish I would've bought at least one of those "play" necklaces there, too.

SG is best enjoyed Sept-May, ideally October-April, to avoid tour bus crowds. But even if you must go in the summer, mostly they're gone in the later afternoon, and the evening street and restaurants are lovely. I just used the times that it was most crowded in town to siesta or read in my hotel room or write in my journal or have a little wine and lunch I'd brought back from the market. I still wear a couple of things I bought for very few euros at the great weekly market in SG.

Such a charming place.

Sydney, Australia
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10. Re: What to do in San Gimignano

The Collegiata is a beautifully decorated church, with striped marble romanesque type columns an interior coverd by frescoes and a gorgeous fresco of the annunciation in the side porch.(small entrance fee) Sant Agostino is interesting. It looks almost modern from outside but is actually very old, 13th century. Some beautiful frescoes, delicate and when we saw them, rather damaged by age. Peaceful.