Siena is not only a city of art, but also the Palio, good food and a starting point for discovering the Crete and Val D'Orcia by motorbike.
Unesco entered Siena in the world heritage list in 1995, for having preserved important characteristics of its medieval structure without altering them, defining it "a masterpiece of dedication and inventiveness in which the buildings were designed to be adapted to the entire design of the urban structure ".
In Siena it is a must to start from its main square, Piazza del Campo, the same where the Palio is celebrated every year and from which you can start on foot to admire the surrounding monuments.
The square has a characteristic trapezoidal shape and is slightly downhill towards the center, where the source Gaia is located, a copy of the fifteenth-century work by Jacopo della Quercia. Around the square rise the monumental buildings such as Palazzo Sansedoni and the Palazzo Pubblico. From the height of its 102 meters stands the Torre del Mangia which dates back to the forties of the fourteenth century; its height is the same as the bell tower of the Cathedral to symbolize the parity between divine and earthly power. At the foot of the tower stands the Cappella di Piazza, a marble tabernacle with splendid sculptures.
But Siena is not only Palio and Piazza del Campo: the visit to the city is a succession of churches, such as San Domenico and Santa Maria dei Servi, of small streets full of historic shops, craft shops and where to taste the best products of the area. and its wines.
The Sienese's passion for the Palio is something that goes beyond simple sporting competition; it is an event that boils in the veins of the Sienese. As they would say, "if I had to explain this to you, you wouldn't understand." The territory of the city is divided into 17 districts, of which only ten participate in the Palio race with a horse that is assigned to them by extraction. Before the Palio, there is the Historic Walk, a procession in costume, in which over 600 participants participate. The Palio, which consists of traveling three times around the Piazza del Campo, riding the horse bareback (without saddle), takes place on 2 July and 16 August of each year.