A picturesque, antique townscape in Tuscany- San Gimignano

San Gimignano, situated in the  Tuscan region of Italy, is one of the most picturesque and preserved hilltowns I have visited so far. Popular for its skyline of medieval towers, this place is so rich in its culture that simply a casual stroll in the old town can fill your mind with awe!

The narrow streets in the Old Town of San Gimignano


I was accompanied by my mother on this trip, as she wanted to visit a place historical and unique, and at the same time less packed with tourists. I am not saying that San Gimignano is quiet, but compared to the most popular places such as Florence and Pisa also situated in the Tuscan part of Italy, this small town can make you experience all its features in peace. We visited this place in June, which is close to the peak time for tourist visits.

One of the streets in the old town that leads to its suburban area

The old town is not that big, and can therefore be explored by foot. It is also important to remember that the town, surrounded by medieval walls, cannot be accessed from the outside by cars.  So, taking lazy strolls through every narrow street in the town, frequent espresso in cozy cafés, and admiring the large medieval buildings make up the important events of the day.

Strolling through the main street vibrant with tourists and contrasting colors

There are some good spots in the old town for good gelato, and the most popular one is the Gelataria Dondoli, which was thronging with tourists. I tried one with pistachio, which already made my day! We hung out for some more time in the area afterward, which is a popular square (Piazza della Cisterna). This triangular square is surrounded by tall, old buildings and a medieval well in the center.

Admiring the surroundings while seated on a bench on a side street 

The local markets in and around the old town square are vibrant and pose as easy attractions for tourists. The weekly market is hosted every Thursday. I bought a flowery top for myself that goes well with the greenery outside the city. 

The stunning medieval towers and squares in the old town of San Gimignano require a comprehensive appraisal, which will be described in detail in my upcoming posts!

A street with local markets attracting tourists

An experience that one should not miss is the view of the old town during sunset. The warm rays of the sun find their way through the narrow streets of the town and leave their orangeish mark on the medieval towers. By this time, the local markets will be closed, and the square peaceful with only the sounds of birds chirping and nestling on top of the towers. One can stroll through the streets in peace also after a nice Tuscan dinner (don't forget to try the white wine of the region Vernaccia di San Gimignano!), experience the old town in a new light, and feel the romance!

View from the restaurant Sosta sulla Francigena San Gimignano situated in front of the entrance to the medieval town of San Gimignano

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