Sunday, June 8, 2014

Day 2 Tuscany - San Gigiamano and Sienna

Tuscany: Sienna and San Gimignano

              We had posted on our role call on cruise critic that we were looking to share this tour. Luckily Michelle read this and had her friends join us. Tour sharing through Rome in Limo is a great option. You get to meet some fun people, and save money! Tour Share with Rome in Limo They have many different tour options from Parma to Naples. Much to our delight, who shows up as our driver for Tuscany? Franco! Yeah us. We knew we were in great hands. Both the city if Sienna and San Gimignano are Unesco World Heritage Sites.
              The ride out was about 3 hours from Rome. It gave us time to enjoy the relaxing countryside. You could see lots of vineyards and you see cities built on hilltops.

 There was a marathon going on. you can't really appreciate the hills these people were going up by this photo but the picture above that shows the height of the hills these towns were built on.

 San Gimignano


 Amazing pizza

 Bathrooms cost 50 cents- be prepared
















 Very steep hills


 At the top overlooking vineyards
 Looks at the layers of roofing




Sneaking a peak in a bakery kitchen

 My one food regret is that I didn't get a slice of pizza. Best pizza we had all trip.
 We left San Gimignano and went for lunch at http://www.torciano.com/en/
 Stop and smell the roses!

 The lunch and wine tasting was $25 euro pp
 Wine , balsamic vinegar and truffled olive oil
 I think this was like a salami and a creamier Parmesan- like cheese
 Wine Tasting
 Appetizer and stoup
Cannellini Bean soup/stew = stoup
 Luigi's Mama's lasagne covered in truffled olive oil
 Luigi and Heather as he teaches us the importance of international relations...maybe that's true!
 Michael relaxing on the way to Sienna. Why did we not park him in back?
Onto the town of Sienna
 This is the town where they have the running of the horses Sienna Running of the Horses



 Michael, rested up, Heather and me
 Steps, steps and more steps!








 We were dropped off in downtown Rome and were just going to taxi back to the Courtyard
 We found a cafe near the taxi stand and had a dinner. Lots of pasta al dente.

 Our taxi driver, nor any of the other drivers had ever heard of the Courtyard Marriott (American-centric thinking on our part!) He called into dispatch holding our room key telling her in Italian our hotel name was "AHH-leetah Wray warda" (Elite reward) Note to self ALWAYS have hotel name and address when out and about. Below is the taxi stand.
 Cost was around 300 euro per couple plus lunch. Dinner and taxi  extra. Hotel again- free.