What to Visit in San Gimignano

It's not hard to find things to do in San Gimignano in Italy

What to do in San Gimignano in 2024: main attractions and what to do? Best time to visit, how to get there on your own, is it possible to park for free, prices for day trips to San Gimignano from Florence – in the review of Goodtimefortrip.com.

San Gimignano is a small town in Italy. That is, literally tiny, if you focus on the area of the piece of land enclosed inside the fortress wall.

However, it’s popular and even famous among foreign tourists. So much so that in summer this locality is visited by columns of buses with curious people.

Usually they don’t know very well what to do in San Gimignano, and therefore they go along with organized excursions. But an independent tourist can easily study the issue and come to visit the ancient city without any guides. Except for the navigator in the smartphone, maybe…

San Gimignano is located in Tuscany, in the province of Siena, about halfway from this city to Florence. The inhabited point was founded by the Etruscans and they guessed very correctly – it stands on a hill near the main way along which you can get from Rome to Florence.

To reach San Gimignano directly by train, however, will not work. Since the town stands on a hill a couple of kilometers from the railway line and has not got its own station.

This creates certain difficulties for independent travelers. Especially for those of them who travel around Italy not by car, but by public transport.

Because to get to San Gimignano from the nearest Poggibonsi train station, you will have to travel 15 minutes by bus. By the way, Poggibonsi itself deserves a visit if you intend to see the most beautiful places in Tuscany. Because it’s nice and cozy place, literally envelops the atmosphere of antiquity.

But today – not about him!

Best Time to Visit San Gimignano

The best month to visit San Gimignano is September

As mentioned above, the Tuscan town is well known to the general public. And that’s why tens or hundreds of thousands of tourists come to see the towers of San Gimignano in the summer season.

So if you are going to visit Florence in May, you will most likely wander through the streets of this place in a dense crowd. In the summer months, the pandemonium becomes even greater, and the air temperature practically eliminates the possibility that you will enjoy the trip.

After all, at this time Italy is simply melting from the heat. And to seek salvation from it among the narrow city streets is not the right decision. So at this period it’s much more correct to go on holidays to one of the seaside resorts in Tuscany.

The best month to visit San Gimignano is September, when the heat is already subsiding. Or even October – while the Tuscan autumn still gives nature warmth.

In November, it will already rain here, at times plentiful. And not every foreigner will risk going to Tuscany, which is no longer captivating with bright colors, in winter. Because it’s widely believed that the charm of this Italian region is best revealed in late spring and summer.

How to Get to San Gimignano

The easiest way to get here is by car. Both on the trip to Florence from Siena and on the way back.

That is, you quite have time to see the (few) sights of San Gimignano after, say, visiting the Uffizi Gallery or enjoying Raphael’s paintings in the Palazzo Pitti.

Signs on the roads are present in due quantity – only the most inattentive driver will manage to get lost. After leaving the main highway RA3 (free!), you will have to circle around a little, marveling at industrial buildings and warehouses in such an unique place.

Then the road will go up. And you will realize that you are approaching the goal of your journey.

The cost of organized bus tours from Florence is not too high. For 70-80 euros you can take part in a day trip, which includes not only acquaintance with San Gimignano, but also with Siena and even Pisa

San Gimignano itself is an attraction.

Parking and Overnight

A kilometer or a little more from the entrance to the old town of San Gimignano, there is free campers and cars parking for 30-50 places. You can stop here and continue walking.

Since in the “New City”, which is located a little closer to the goal of your trip, most of the free places along the road will probably be occupied.

There is an extensive paid parking near the fortress walls of San Gimignano. It is possible to settle down on which for quite impressive money – 2 € / hour or 20 € – for a full day.

Where to stay for the night in San Gimignano – if you are a romantic person, you will definitely want to do it?

We would recommend doing it right in the old town. Fortunately, in September, the prices for accommodation are falling.

Pay attention, for example, to Palazzo Benucci, right from the lobby immersing guests in the atmosphere of antiquity. This hotel is located in an old house, has earned excellent reviews and ratings, but despite this, remains very inexpensive.

For a slightly larger amount (about 140 €/day), you can rentin San Gimignano entire apartments. We especially recommend the clean and equipped with all modern appliances ones – Casa Irene, which is located less than half a kilometer from the central Piazza della Cisterna.

What to Visit in San Gimignano

San Gimignano itself is a landmark! After all, even in Italy there are not so many medieval ensembles of excellent preservation, dating from the XII-XV centuries.

The main reason popularity is excessive advertising – San Gimignano is included in the UNESCO World Heritage List! There are especially a lot of organized tourists here visiting the town on tour buses.

Not only locals, but also travelers themselves can’t breathe from the crowds. Therefore, for example, the central street that leads from the city gates to the Cathedral Square and Palazzo Popolo, the residence of the city government, sometimes looks like a human river.

Inside the Palazzo del Popolo there is an Art museum where you can stumble upon the works of Pinturicchio

The Torre Grosso or the Great Tower is the tallest in the city (54 meters). Inside the Palazzo del Popolo there is an Art museum where you can stumble upon the works of Pinturicchio. The same “little painter” who decorated the vaults of the famous Piccolomini Library in Siena with beautiful frescoes.

Travelers like to relax on the steps of another city landmark, the Church of the Assumption of Mary, known as the Collegiate. And inside you can find wonderful medieval frescoes, including the works of Domenico Ghirlandaio.

By the way, if you didn’t know, this church is the Cathedral of San Gimignano… It is not always open for tourists, look at the opening hours and prices here: www.duomosangimignano.it/orari.htm.

Before going to the Cathedral Square, tourists inevitably get to the Piazza della Cisterna. The main city square is triangular in shape, on which the 14th century well stands proudly, which actually gave it its name.

In one of the houses on this square, they sell Italian gelato, which has been recognized as the best in the world. As the sign on the door proudly informs.

Tourists obediently crowd in line to taste the “best of the best”, the most impatient go to another gelateria on the corner. Where – lo and behold – this delicacy is no worse!

Towers

In San Gimignano has preserved 14 medieval towers (someone saw even 15 – practice at your leisure) – they are the business card of the town, its symbols.

At the time of ona, wealthy citizens who got rich on serving travelers were measured by wealth by building towers. Those who had it higher earned more. Or maybe they were more eager for visual effects?!

Then the building impulse of the fathers of San Gimignano gradually faded… Or perhaps people have become more indifferent. So the new towers stopped being built, while the old ones were gradually leveled to the ground, curbing pride.

There were 72 towers in San Gimignano – only 14 have survived to our time. They are in excellent condition, however, and do not fall anywhere!

So after visiting Pisa, you may well go here to see how you really need to build!

© Goodtimefortrip.com

About STen 184 Articles
Traveling is like a life: the further you go, the more understand. I am not a writer or a journalist, but believe that my reach experience gained on trips can be useful. The whole Europe and Turkey are enough for me so far...

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