Be Polite, Walk in Twos
The streets are very narrow, so if you are going with a tour group and you have a guide with an umbrella, please, please, try to walk in twos or threes at the most. Nothing is more annoying than to have to stand aside and wait until the tour group passes so you can walk in your own town. If you think the locals are rude, that is one of the reasons.
Libreria Piccolomini frescos
The main stations in his life shown in the frescos are :
Konzil in Basel/Switzerland
Ambassador in Scotland
Archibishop of Siena
becoming Pope Pius II
Calling for the Crusade
and many more
More Tuscan delights
Coming from Casa di Sta Caterina, I was wandering down a small alley and a waft of tummy-churning (in a very nice way) aromas greeted me. I thought it was from some homey kitchen, but when I investigated further, it did come from a restaurant - preparing for the lunch crowd. It was too early, so I vowed to come back for lunch.
And it was worth the trek back (up Siena's hilly cobbled streets). That lunch stands out as one of the best meals I had during the trip. I decided to be a bit adventurous with the choices this time. Appetizer was chicken neck stuffed with ground meat. It was light but very flavorful, with the intensity coming from the mix of pickled cucumbers and pesto - in beautiful contrast with the meaty flavor of the stuffing. For mains, it was pure adventure - coniglio alle cretes senesi - stewed rabbit with capers, tomato and wine. Rustic, hearty, with the caper providing the kick and the wine tying them all up together. Feel sorry for my favorite cartoon character, Bugs Bunny.
But the best was yet to come. The service is so good here, that I decided to leave the dessert to the able hand of the charming waitress - and what she prepared was downright glorious - an assortment of cakes: tiramisu, ricotta with berries, and apple pie - I thought I've died and have gone to heaven (no exagerration here!) - with a shot of the Tuscany's "holy" wine, vin santo, or dessert wine, as my last drink.
Service is very friendly and excellent. Again, leave the dessert to your waiter/waitress - and you'd be delighted you did.
I've never seen this restaurant featured in any guidebook - but this one is highly recommended!
The Zebra Church!
A visit to Siena without seeing the Duomo would be insane! The facade is incredible and the interior of the Duomo amazing.
I took this picture from the top of the abandoned wall of the Duomo, accessed through the Museum (charged about €6 I think).
A majestic building
This huge majestic building is the Cathedral of Saint Mary of the Assumption (Cattedrale dell’Assunta).
The building started in 1230. The cupola was added in 1264, but in the 1300s the church was completely transformed.
The originals of the marble statues of saints, prophets, and allegorical sybils and animals can be found at the Museo dell’Opera.