Siena, Italy, is the capital of the region called Tuscany. The Province of Siena consists of 36 comuni (comunes), which we would call municipalities or townships.
Siena is not a large city, compared to Rome or Florence. However, the city’s population is 54,000. It remains a walled city since the 12th-15th centuries, when the first Gothic buildings and wall were built. The Cathedral of Siena was started in 1284 on the lower section, a stunning showpiece with its black and white striped interior and exterior marble walls.
I was able to get this particular shot of Siena’s Basilica, Bell Tower and Duomo, as I was standing on top of the wall of the first cathedral, which was never finished, The first cathedral was intended to be the largest in the world. Then the plague hit Siena, cutting their population nearly in half. With fewer people, they could no longer support a cathedral that large, and they began to build the smaller present cathedral. ( Although we think it’s still very large!) The original nave with arched door, 3 walls and stone floor still remain. The wall above the nave is available as a viewpoint for looking at the rest of the city and the surrounding countryside.