I have been incredibly busy with community, church, and home “work”. I’ve had many things on my “to do” list and I have no idea what happened to January! Did anyone else feel that way? I kept trying to get here….but ran out of time.
The stats are in. I should never post late at night. I got the history of Siena’s Cathedral mixed up in my last post. The cathedral we see today was built between 1215 and 1263. Years later, the Sienese planned … Continue reading →
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.
If you guessed Italy, you’re right! We traveled there for two weeks and had a fabulous time. We had beautiful weather in the 70s-80s F. The only time it rained was on travel days!
“Traveling is the ruin of all happiness! There’s no looking at a building after seeing Italy.”
Our first stop was Florence, with a great hotel on the Arno River. I spent a lot of time taking photos from the room’s window! After four days in Florence our plan was to travel through Tuscany and finish in Rome. Our stops included: San Gimignano, Siena, Assisi and Rome. San Gimignano was just a half-day trip on the way to Siena. My husband offered to drive through Tuscany and drop the car at the Rome airport. Our plan was to avoid driving in any major cities! Barring a few wrong turns, we succeeded!
Since we got home very late Monday night…I’m just now starting to edit photos.
I’ll post as soon as I can, beginning with Florence! Here’s one to start~
The photo was taken in front of our hotel, looking west down the Arno River. You’ll see the Ponte Alle Grazie bridge. This was the second bridge built over the Arno, the first being the famous Ponte Vecchio. Ponte Alle Grazie bridge was first built in 1237 and over the years had a home for nuns; then shops and homes, as the Ponte Vecchio does now. A fierce flood destroyed the bridge and it was rebuilt. During WWll it was destroyed by bombs. It was rebuilt in 1957 and remains unchanged.
Looking west along the Arno River. The Ponte Alle Grazie bridge can be seen in the photo.
Don’t change this channel! Stay tuned for more updates from Italy!
Thanks for hanging in there while I was away….I appreciate my blogger friends!