Leave Florence, arrive in Siena

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Leave Florence, arrive in Siena

We got up early, showered, had breakfast, and went to the train station. We got the 10:40A train to Siena.

We arrived and found our hotel, Hotel Duomo. Its inexpensive, the rooms are reasonable size with a reasonable, workable bathroom, but no internet access; it turns out wireless doesn’t work well through thick stone walls, big surprise. And its near the center of city by the Duomo!

The header for the stationary for the hotel, indicating its location in Siena

The header for the stationary for the hotel, indicating its location in Siena

Siena seems to be in a perpetual time warp, frozen in the early Renaissance (thanks to the Black Death coming to Siena just as she started a war with Florence, which she lost, and the Renaissance never really came to Siena, and Florence added Siena to her territories), the streets are narrow and the walls mostly gray and tall; if you have claustrophobia, don’t come here, it feels like everything is leaning into you all the time.

We got settled in and went right out for lunch to a place suggested by the hotel staff, La Taverna Del Capitano at Via Del Capitano 6/8. The food was really good, the service really bad.

La Taverna Del Capitano card

La Taverna Del Capitano card

We did some shopping and then went to the Duomo, which we visited in 2003. We bought a Cumulativo ticket, which is 10 Euro but lets you into five venues. The exterior is lushly decorated.

The interior is very cool as well, with busts of all the popes lined up at the top of the columnade as well as a large rosette window. The most famous feature of the interior are the mosaics in the floor; these used to only be visible for a few weeks a year but now most are on display year round.

There’s a famous room, the Piccolomini Library, which was painted by Pintoricchio.

We walked down the hill and had a snack and drinks at a little bar.

We walked up the hill and down to the Duomo crypt. This is only recently opened, as they found the church that the Duomo was built upon. There are some beautiful frescos, and its amazing to me that this church is built upon another church (and yes, you can look down some of the facade of the former church, at least 20 feet!). Of course, no photos allowed…

We then went to the Museo Dell’Opera. No photos allowed, but of course Aviva took a few anyway.

Aviva shopped at a ceramics store we both like, Alessandro Marchionni at Via S. Pietro 22.

We had a wonderful dinner at Osteria Boccon del Prete at Via S. Pietro 17. The food was excellent, the service divine, and the price was good as well.

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