Siena in a day at a glance
- Duration: 5 hours (plus a lunch break of 1 hour)
- Type: private tour (just your family/friends and your guide)
- Payment: pay a deposit now, pay the remaining balance the day of the tour
- Other expenses: admission to the Duomo and Museo Civico, € 21.00/person
- Schedule: every day except for Sundays
- Tour overview
- Pick-up and Drop-off info
- Things to bring (and not to)
- What’s included (and what’s not)
- Important information
Siena in a day is a comprehensive tour that will show you all the main attractions of the city in few hours, giving you all the needed info about the history of Siena. It’s perfect for newcomers, to optimize your time in the best preserved Medieval city in Italy.
The tour starts at the Basilica di San Domenico. Erected in the 13th century, the Basilica is famous for containing an important relic: the “holy head” of St. Catherine from Siena, preserved in a beautiful Renaissance frescoed chapel.
You will stroll along Medieval alleys to reach the center of the city, Piazza Del Campo. The shell-shaped square, with its floor of terracotta tiles, is the place where, twice a year, the most famous Sienese tradition takes place: the Palio. It’s a historical horse race between the districts of the city, called “contrade”. The square is surrounded by important Medieval palaces. On top of the square is the Fonte Gaia, one of the most beautiful fountains in Siena. To the opposite side is the city hall, Palazzo Pubblico, with the tall tower known as Torre Del Mangia. This palace, once the seat of the government for the rich and powerful Republic of Siena, hosts the Civic Museum.
Inside the Museum, your expert guide will show you the 14th-century decorations, particularly the frescoes by Ambrogio Lorenzetti depicting the Allegory of good and bad government, probably the most important figurative statement about the civic life in Italy during the Middle Ages, along with other great works of art of the Golden Age of Siena by Simone Martini, Duccio di Buoninsegna and more.
After a lunch break, you will reach the highest point of this city built on the hills: Piazza del Duomo. Here you will learn how the massive Gothic Cathedral, commissioned in 1196, had to be much larger, and how the enlargement was never accomplished, as testified by the outer walls of the enlarged church that remain unfinished. Inside the Duomo, your guide will show you the Piccolomini Library, decorated by Pinturicchio with stunning colors, and the main works of art by the top Italian artists, including Michelangelo. Inside the Baptistery, you will see the wonderful Baptismal Font decorated by Donatello.
You will then say good-bye to your guide in Piazza del Duomo.
Siena in a day itinerary
This tour has a duration of five hours (plus one hour break for lunch). Here is the itinerary of the tour:
- Basilica di San Domenico
- Piazza del Campo
- Civic Museum
- lunch break
- Duomo and Baptistery
Pick-up and Drop-off
Meeting point: Piazza Maria Teresa di Calcutta, in front of the Art Institute. Click here to see this place on Google Maps.
Hotel pick-up: available for selected hotels, you must contact the guide after booking the tour
Drop-off: Piazza del Duomo, Siena.
Things to bring (and not to)
You will have to pay the price of museum tickets. Your guide will assist you and you will pay at the museum ticket office directly, by cash or credit card. After booking, you can directly contact your guide for more information.
Having a camera with you is your choice. Someone prefers to immerse in beauty not being distracted by taking pictures/making videos, someone else prefers to build printable memories of his trip. It’s really up to you. Inside the museums included in this tour, pictures and videos are allowed, but the use of a flash or selfie-sticks is prohibited.
Entrance to the Duomo and any other religious place is subject to restrictions: your clothing must be appropriate and cover your shoulders and knees.
What’s included in the price (and what is not)
- 5-hour private tour with an expert licensed tour guide of Siena
- hotel pick-up (on request and free of charge: available only for hotels in central Siena)
- admission tickets to Duomo (Opa SI Pass) and Civic Museum (€ 21/person)
- any other personal expense
Here are some important things to know in order to ensure you have the best possible experience with your “Siena in a day” tour:
- the itinerary is indicative and can be changed in case some monument is inaccessible for restoration; furthermore, the itinerary can be changed if hotel pick-up is requested, based on the location of your hotel; the order of the attractions can be changed to better suit the different starting point;
- on Sunday morning and during any religious event the Duomo is closed. The church reserves the right to change the opening schedule at any time. If the Duomo is closed, the guide will provide a detailed description from outside;