19 February 2011

A visit to Siena

City of Siena

As I mentioned in my highlights of Pisa post, my sweetie was at a conference there. While he was occupied with that, I was lucky enough to get to take a day trip to Siena and San Gimignano.

Medieval Streets

Siena had a very different look and feel to Pisa. The streets are much steeper and lined with natural stone buildings. Despite all the tourists, it still feels so much a medieval town.

Cathedral in Siena

The main thing to see in Siena is the stunning cathedral.

Cathedral detail

The individuality of each decorative element of the exterior is incredible.

Cathedral interior

The interior has a lot of black and white stripes because those are the city's colours.

A Random Bit of Wall

Every inch of the interior is decorated, from walls, to ceilings, to floors, and there were elaborately carved shrines, statues, or other details by all the most famous Italian sculpters.

In the Library

But the most amazingly amazing part of the cathedral is the library, which has stunning (and perfectly preserved) frescoes.

Illuminated Book

As it's a library, there were indeed some fabulously illuminated books, but being surrounded by the jewel-toned frescoes is my most vivid impression from the room.

In the Library

The frescoes on the ceiling were also awe-inspiring. The library was one of the most remarkable places I saw on the entire trip.

As this post is already rather long, I'll save the San Gimignano part of the day trip for the next post. You can see all my pictures from Siena in my trip to Italy set.

Photographs and artwork by Allison Gryski. © All rights reserved.