Exploring the Beauty of San Gimignano

San Gimignano is undoubtedly the most famous village in Tuscany and one of the most popular tourist destinations. For years, two Italian regions were on our bucket list, and we finally decided to visit them during our honeymoon: Liguria and Tuscany.

Updated January 2024

We tried to use our one week in the best way to see the most places and get the most memories. So after long planning but short packing we started our journey. We spent 3 days in Liguria, exploring Portofino and the Cinque Terre, and then headed to Tuscany for four days. In such a short visit we couldn’t explore everything. So, I don’t want to go into details. There are excellent sites and books with all the important information. We used them as well, but still we thought we would share some pictures, thoughts and memories. We enjoyed it and we would like to go back again, so put Tuscany on our Go Back list.

On the third day of our journey, we left Sestri Levante and made a stop in Pisa to see the Leaning Tower. We only spent a few hours there, but it was enough to check out the iconic landmark. The crowds and pushy vendors didn’t leave a great impression, so we quickly moved on to our main destination, San Gimignano.

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San gimignano

We booked an “agriturismo” apartment on a ranch a few kilometers outside of town. This family-owned farm produces grapes, wine, and olive oil in a charming hillside setting. They offer rooms and apartments, and we had the pleasure of enjoying an original Tuscan dinner and tasting their excellent wines. The drawback of this accommodation was that we needed to drive everywhere. But the tranquil environment, beautiful Tuscan landscape, and the pool more than made up for it. Especially coming from a busy, noisy city like Budapest. Having a car is essential to fully explore the beauty of Tuscany.

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San Gimignano is situated on a 300-meter hill and enclosed by a wall with eight entrances. The defining feature of San Gimignano is its 14 remaining medieval towers, which once numbered 72 and were built by rival families seeking to flaunt their wealth and power. These “medieval skyscrapers” are a sight to behold, and the village’s medieval architecture has remarkably survived to this day.

The town is home to several museums and galleries, such as the Civic Museum and the Gallery of Modern and Contemporary Art, which house a wealth of art and historical artifacts. San Gimignano’s vibrant cultural scene includes music festivals, art exhibitions, and theatrical performances.

This charming triangular piazza is the heart of San Gimignano and is surrounded by picturesque buildings. It’s the perfect place to enjoy a gelato, people-watch, or simply soak in the medieval ambiance.

As you stroll through the village, pay attention to the small details. Like the bells and knockers on the front doors, adorned with interesting and diverse decorations, showcasing true artistic craftsmanship. The village exudes a unique atmosphere, and art galleries further enrich its charm.

panoramic views of the Tuscan countryside

For panoramic views of the Tuscan countryside, climb the Torre Grossa, the tallest of San Gimignano’s towers. The effort is rewarded with breathtaking vistas of rolling hills and vineyards that stretch as far as the eye can see.

While our visit was relatively short, San Gimignano left a lasting impression on us. We soaked in the picturesque beauty of this historical gem and admired the well-preserved medieval character that made it a captivating destination. If you pay attention to details you can find many different doorbells and knockers.

Summary

San Gimignano is famous for its 14 remaining medieval towers, which were built by rival families. The town has several museums and galleries, and its cultural scene includes music festivals, art exhibitions, and theatrical performances. The village exudes a unique atmosphere, and visitors can enjoy a gelato, people-watch, or simply soak in the medieval ambiance. For panoramic views of the Tuscan countryside, visitors can climb the Torre Grossa.

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