Sunday, January 26, 2014

San Gimignano

One of my favorite places we visited was called San Gimignano. It is a little town off the beaten path, a walled city that boasts its many towers, medieval architecture, and unspoiled views of the Tuscan countryside. Walking through the walls onto the town's main thoroughfare is like walking back in time. It wasn't my favorite place (that is a toss-up between Rome and the town of Siena, which I have yet to blog about.), but the hours that our group spent here were some I will never forget.

My mom and Suzette had stayed back at our hotel in Montecatini, so Amy and I were on our own. We followed our group up the main road towards the two piazzas at the top - Piazza della Cisterna and Piazza Duomo. The road is lined with shops on both sides which sold everything from olive wood cutting kitchen utensils to ceramics to delicious delis with boar's head salami to a torture museum (I wish we had had time to tour that!).
Torture museum. I like the skeleton...

At the top, it opens up into the main piazzas. We spent a little bit of time in the Piazza Duomo. The church wasn't free so we didn't tour it, but we sat on the steps leading up to the church and ate gelato and watched the vendors setting up their stores for the day on long tables. There were two adorable little girls with brown curly hair who were selling styrophome  headbands and bracelets. They were happy and gleeful and beautiful.


The Piazza Duomo

Piazza della Cistern (the cistern, a well that was famous, was always covered in people, so I didn't get a good picture of it.)

Amy and I spent time shopping and then ate boar's head salami and cheese sandwiches as we admired the countryside outside San Gimignano.

Not pictured: the bees that desperately wanted this sandwich.

I really enjoyed my time here. I think it would be a very hard place to live - it's mostly tourists who visit, and I can't imagine what children and teenagers who grew up here would do with themselves. But I would love to visit here again and spend more than a few hours wandering its twisty streets.

Twisty streets

And, because I have a hard time not sharing photos, here are some more.

Sigh, so beautiful.

In case you wondering, this is what I look like holding a sword.


Melanie said...

I've always wondered what you look like holding a sword! ;)

The pictures are beautiful! I would love to spend an afternoon enjoying the scenery there.

Feisty Harriet said...

That 4th from the bottom pic? With the shutters, perspective, and the countryside in the background? I audibly gasped when I scrolled down to it. GORGEOUS.