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The Less Seen Tuscany: Marble Floors of Siena Cathedral

The Less Seen Tuscany: Marble Floors of Siena Cathedral | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

When you go into the Cathedral of Siena, the natural inclination is to look up at the majestic vaulted ceilings.
However, for a few months of the year (end of August to end of October) there is the uncovering “scoperchiamento” of this work of art of inlaid marble and you are allowed to view the Cathedral’s masterpiece underfoot.
Each illustration was drawn as a sketch by some of the most talented artists of the Renaissance (Pinturicchio, Sassetta, Domenico di Bartolo) and then transformed into detailed marble inlay by the master craftsmen of the time. [...]

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The Crete Senesi and the Accona Desert

The Crete Senesi and the Accona Desert | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

[...] The Sienese Crete area is situated south of Siena, corresponding to the municipalities of Asciano, Buonconvento, Monteroni d’Arbia, Rapolano Terme and San Giovanni d’Asso. All these towns are in the province of Siena: for years their task was to supply grain to this city and entire families worked in the fields.
The literal meaning of “Crete Senesi” is Sienese clays. They are, in fact, very distinctive of this area and resemble a lunar landscape. The Crete Senesi are mainly made by “mattaione”, a sediment of marine origin with a high mineral content.
All around human presence is limited: the sound of nature prevails over the handful of buildings, such as old brick farmhouses. You won’t find any squares, castles or cathedrals here. During summer, a gentle wind shakes the golden wheat, giving the sensation of Heaven on Earth! [...]

Mariano Pallottini's insight:

Crete Senesi [Photo Credits: Fabrizio Angius]

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DarioDiPrisco's curator insight, April 15, 5:44 AM

The literal meaning of “Crete Senesi” is Sienese clays. They are, in fact, very distinctive of this area and resemble a lunar landscape.

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"Il Palio di Siena" as seen by the National Geographic

"Il Palio di Siena" as seen by the National Geographic | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Siena, Italy - Photograph by Marco Di Lauro, Getty Images

Before trials for the Palio horse race, members of Italy's paramilitary police force, called carabinieri, ride through Siena's Piazza del Campo. The raucous 90-second race around the city square has taken place every summer since the 1600s. Siena's neighborhoods, or contrade, compete against one another, and almost everything is fair game—including bribery and whipping an opponent.

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Radda in Chianti City Guide : Sightseeing, Things To Do | Tuscany Things to Do

Radda in Chianti City Guide : Sightseeing, Things To Do | Tuscany Things to Do | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Tuscany is famously dotted with hilltop towns that often inspire gushing declarations of affection from those who have visited – and while you can get great local wine throughout Tuscany (indeed, throughout Italy), one of the more famous wine-growing areas in the region is Chianti. The fact that Chianti is also home to several hilltop villages meaning you can enjoy spectacular views, cobbled streets, and picturesque piazzas while enjoying a local Chianti wine – well, it’s easy to see why this is such a popular area for tourists. In particular, one of the towns that draws lots of visitors each year is Radda in Chianti.

The town of Radda, as the name suggests, is located in the heart of the Chianti area, right in the middle of Tuscany. Though it’s a medieval town you see today, there has been a village on this site since the 9th century, partly owing to its easily defensible hilltop position. The town itself is incredibly small, making it a relatively quiet retreat for those of you who aren’t eager to embrace the constant buzz of a city like Florence – just know that during the high season, Radda is a very popular day trip for many travelers in Tuscany. As with any day trip destination, the mornings and evenings (before and after the day trippers) are when Radda really shines.

One of the things that can keep visitors away from Radda in Chianti is the lack of a train station. This means you’ll need to either rent a car or take a bus from nearby Florence or Siena in order to get there. Neither of these options is difficult, but since many travelers rely solely on trains to get around, Radda’s lack of train service can keep the crowds away to a certain degree. The town remains incredibly popular with wine tourists, of course, and even those drawn to the picturesque location can enjoy the local Chianti in restaurants, bars, and wine shops around town.

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Traveling with Lyn to Siena - Tuscany

Traveling with Lyn to Siena - Tuscany | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Another wonderful city we visited was Siena in Tuscany. It is actually one of the most popular tourist destinations in Italy.
It is famous for its art, cuisine, museums, outstanding beautiful architecture and the very famous Palio, a horse race that is held twice a year. Actually, the Palio is such a big event I will do a separate post on it.
Siena is easily one of Italy’s loveliest medieval cities. It is so worth while to take the trip when you are in Tuscany. A day visit is great however if you have the time stay a couple of days. There is just so much to do and see in this gorgeous city.
There are a few options in getting to Siena from Florence. I have travelled by coach, I have driven and also take the Sita bus from Florence. I learned that although taking the train into Siena is an option it is not the best option. Siena does have a train station, however it is located further from the historic city centre than the bus station.
The SITA company runs the buses between Florence and Siena, and the departure point in Florence is just across the street from the city’s main train station, Santa Maria Novella. Siena’s bus stop is at Piazza Gramsci, well inside the old city walls.
The journey between the two cities takes roughly 1.25 hours on the fast bus. This is a direct trip. There is another bus which stops several times including a stop at Poggibonsi where we stopped on the way to San Gimignano.
If you are travelling from Florence by car, the quickest way to get to Siena is on the autostrade which only takes 1 ¼ hours and goes through the very beautiful Chianti region. If you decide to go via the scenic route, make sure you have a very good detailed map and or a GPS
If you are not from Florence, I highly recommend seriously considering not driving in Florence. It is not the most driveable city in Italy and is very frustrating. If you plan on renting a car, wait till you are ready to leave Florence.
At then end of the day of my last trip to Siena, after walking till our feet ached, we chose to sit in a great bar overlooking the piazza and drank our wine and people watched.
Now this is an activity I can thoroughly recommend. When I travel I want to make every post a winner but some times I just need to sit back, reflect and watch the world go by.
There is so much to see and do in Siena I will do another post at a later date.

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Things To Do In Tuscany: Siena's Two Palios

Things To Do In Tuscany: Siena's Two Palios | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Did you know there's not just one Siena Palio - but two? The famous Medieval bareback horse race happens twice each summer in the historic center of Siena. [...]

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View to the countryside in Siena, Italy

View to the countryside in Siena, Italy | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

One of the best things to do in Siena is to climb to the top of the Panorama del Facciatone, an old facade of an unfinished extension of the beautiful cathedral nearby. A very tight spiral staircase leads to the top where you get magnificent views out across Siena. In this photo you can see out past the old town of Siena to the surrounding Tuscan countryside. This is a place that I would love to visit again one day.

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Visit Siena in occasion of the Exhibition: Saint John the Baptist by Caravaggio

Visit Siena in occasion of the Exhibition: Saint John the Baptist by Caravaggio | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

Starting 17 April, visitors to the Crypt beneath the Cathedral of Siena will admire a masterpiece of Italian art: Saint John the Baptist by Michelangelo Merisi da Caravaggio, from the Pinacoteca Capitolina in Rome.
The painting has been housed in the Campidoglio since 1750, and is definitely one of the great painter’s most fascinating works, in which he ingeniously expresses his reflections on naturalism in painting and religious
sentiment. Critics today unanimously agree in attributing this painting to Caravaggio, also owing to a painstaking series of technical investigations that have proven the work’s authenticity. Caravaggio painted this Saint John the Baptist in 1602, probably for Ciriaco Mattei, one of the figures most in the public eye in contemporary Roman society. The subject of the painting is a clear reference to Ciriaco’s son, Giovanni Battista. Intended for private quarters in the Palazzo Mattei and not for a place of worship, Saint John the Baptist is a profound synthesis of Caravaggio’s meditations on sacred art. For this reason, as the compositional model for the Baptist, the painter uses one of the beautiful Nudes Michelangelo frescoed in the vault of the Sistine Chapel, the most striking and complex work of the Italian Renaissance.

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Tourism Businesses for sale in Tuscany : Colle ai Lecci, Castelnuovo Berardenga, Siena, Chianti Classico Area

Tourism Businesses for sale in Tuscany : Colle ai Lecci, Castelnuovo Berardenga, Siena, Chianti Classico Area | Italia Mia | Scoop.it

The estate is on the southern hills of Chianti with a splendid view overSiena and the Amiata Mount. The property consists of two adjacent buildings used one as accommodation business and the other for the production of Chianti wine (D.O.C.G.). It is located in a position of rare beauty with a view up to Siena (25 km). The style and the preservation of the buildings (in the oldest part dating back to the XIII century) is typically Tuscan both internally and externally. The estate consists of two old country houses, a farm outbuilding of 120 square meters (currently used to the storage of the agricultural equipment) and, a short distance from the company building, a further 45 square metres annex to restore. The two country houses are used as the owner’s residence and an adjoining guests quarters (of over 200 square metres). This last part is composed of five perfectly furnished apartments each consisting of bedroom, living room and bathroom (3 of the apartments also have a terrace). There are 2 apartments for the staff, a dreds that can contain about 1,000 ql of wine with a complete equipment for the grape harvest and wine-making, ageing cellar with oak casks, bottling room with the proper machines for bottling and labelling and a shipping room. These ancient country houses are surrounded by approximately 24 hectares of hilly land that slopes towards the Valley where the Malena stream flows. The land has a stony composition (galestro) which makes it ideal for the tree cultivation, for which it is currently used. It is partly directly accessible from the main road and partly from white roads. The land is cultivated with Chianti Classico DOCG vineyards for about 10 hectares, with olive grove for 3 hectares, about 9 hectares of forest and a park with swimming pool of 8×9 metres. The estate is currently used as a wine business, surrounded by vineyards, olive groves and a oaks wood. The farm was bought by the husband of the current owner, who started with the oenologist Giulio Gambelli to modernise the wine production, in respect of the culture and traditions typical of the area. Part of the vineyard is nowadays old and will have to be replanted in the short term in order to re-establish an adequate production to the wide vineyard surface. The recently plant vineyard will be productive within two/three years, so that it will be soon possible to have high production indexes. The estate is in the CHIANTI CLASSICO area which ensures a valuable product, sought after, easily and fairly marketable. The company has excellent stable customers, especially foreign. In the current state, considering the new vineyards as already in production

http://www.greatestate.it

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