So today is our the last morning in Greve in Chianti, and we fondly said goodbye to our lovely home of the past 3 days and headed off to another roadtrip! I was sad to leave this beautiful place though. It has been tranquil and relaxing and soothing to the heart and mind.
And of course, I cannot get over how pretty the sights are, with the abundance of wild spring flowers on the rolling hills.
It was too bad that we couldn’t stop on the road, as it was too narrow for cars to takeover so it was a dangerous risk. But I would have really liked to have a picture of us lying in the yellow daisies or the red poppies. It would have looked so lovely.
What a wasted chance! But oh well. There wasn’t anything that could have been done any differently (Oh! Unless we went there with scooters instead … heh heh heh)
Eventually, we reached a medieval town called San Gimignano (and this is how to pronounce it). This place is unique for its medieval architecture, as well as its tower houses, making San Gimignano part of a UNESCO world heritage site. Another UNESCO site that I’ve visited is in Villa Adriana, 45 minutes drive away from Rome.
Anyway! When we reached there, there were hardly any parking to be found, which was quite interesting considering that it was 1. A Monday, and thus a working day and 2. You had to pay 2 euro per hour for parking, which is quite pricey.
Cart suggested that we not spend more than 3 hours in the town. Haha!
Here is the entry to the town! Obligatory photo! And look, I have a modella below! The interesting bit was, the sidepath was clear for the longest time, but just as I readied my camera to take a shot, this lady below walked past by, and at the exact moment, turned around and posed like this! Like a model! With one leg out, perfect!
Okay lady, because of this, you get a spot in my blog. Hehehe
Even though it was around lunch time, there were quite a number of people roaming around in the gothic like buildings.
Here is Hema towards the entry of the town.
And here I am on the other side.
Walking through the path, it was easy to visualise how life was back in the medieval period. Here is a link of a medieval fair that I went to back in 2010 and if you are in Italy and have the chance to visit one, do go! I think it’s an interesting thing to experience.
(It’s strange looking at a video of myself 2 years ago though, I look … different)
We walked past a number of shops, and here is the entry of one of the Torture Museum there.
Hema and I were just talking about visiting one when we researched about places to visit and thought that it would be interesting to go to one. But when we finally reached there, I could not find the strength to even see the displays near the entrance, especially reading the explanations next to it. It was just too much for me.
Heck, I didn’t even have the heart to take a picture of the torture devices – and these two are the more PG rated ones.
For example, there was a metal device with spikes that is chained to your neck and you can’t turn your neck or even talk properly or you risk having your throat punctured. It just made me very very sad
So no. Not for me.
So we continued walking! And this shop – selling salami (of course) and wine and the likes caught my eye.
Look at the boars welcoming customers to the shop! Nope! It’s just Chuck Testa!
And here is where I realised something. Tuscany … sounds a lot like TUSK-any. As in Tusks from a boar. So are wild boars a mascot for Toscana? Like the wolf for Roma? Cart doesn’t seem to agree, but hmm.
I see a lot of wild boar logos in the souvenir shops anyway – on cups, on t-shirts and the likes. And they are so cute. And I couldn’t resist getting myself a pair of t-shirt (it was the last piece!) with this wild boar riding a scooter. Cute isn’t it?
Vroom vroom vroom! My mum is going to kill me. Hahaha!
Oh speaking of last piece, I thought that I could try to get a discount for 10 euro instead of 12 but I must have approached it wrongly. Visualise this conversation in Italian :
Clerk : Would you like to get this t-shirt?
Me : Yes please! 10 euro right? (Hint hint)
Cart : No it’s 12 euro.
Me : (Smile fading) 10 euro please?
Cart : No! Look. It says right over there. 12 euro.
Sigh. As soon as we left the shop, Cart and I had a passionate discussion about what had happened. It wasn’t that I’m so hard pressed for the 2 euro, haggling is a game and I failed the game .. FAILED! In the end, I agreed that I should have been more direct, and say, “Because this is the last piece, can I please have it for this price?”
To change the mood, I’m putting up these nice pictures of me on Sam the scooter, which has absolutely nothing to do with this post :
We walked past this interesting shop selling aprons and caps and whatnots where you could embroider your name on it. Not sure if you could read it as it’s quite tiny, but I see my name there : Marina, a great lover in the kitchen.
And here, Cart – king of the grill!
We continued walking, and at length we reached the Piazza Della Cisterna. This area was interesting as it was sloping up rather than being flat.
There were towers at every corner of the square, and they used to be houses rather than for being outposts.
We rested here a while, while Hema made a quick trip to the ladies room.
And that was where I saw this well. I was sure that it would be empty, with concrete capped on top of it, so jokingly I told Cart, I’m going to throw a coin in there and make a wish!
Oh my goodness! Who knew that it wasn’t completely blocked. And who would have known that there were already other people who had the same idea and threw in their coins!
So much coins! And random locks (Which doesn’t really make sense here as there wasn’t any river nearby where you could throw the key away)
I’m not sure if you notice it in the picture below, but there is a coin with the words “Taiwan good” scribbled on it. Most of the coins I saw were euro coins though.
We then continued to Piazza Duomo – the heart of the town where the Collegiate Church of San Gimignano is.
This is the Palazzo comunale – which is sort of like a town hall.
I really liked looking at the buildings. It looks so majestic and just standing there, you feel like you are standing in a part of history.
We walked in the courtyard nearby …
And we saw this lady playing the harp. It was so relaxing to listen to.
We decided to go to the church to see the fresco and artwork inside. If you are there, I’d advice you to take the double pass to the church and the museum, rather than paying for it separately.
I find the artwork interesting to see, with the use of colours and the ‘flat’ style which was unique during that period.
Unfortunately, you cannot take any pictures inside the church – there are old fresco dating from the 14th century depicting scenes from the testament. I liked looking at the artwork, so it’s a shame about the no photo policy, which I reckon is to protect them (a lot of tourists keep using flash) but I guess that you could check out wikipedia if you’d like to see some of these fresco.
We then headed to the museum next to it. There wasn’t any signs prohibiting visitors from taking pictures, so of course, I got trigger happy. Hahaha!
Woah! Check this out!
There’s a crystal staff here! Cart was joking that a high level magician used these powerful robe and staff set and you could cast lightning bolts with them.
We had a bit more time, so Cart and I contemplated on climbing one of the towers (Hema was exhausted at this point of time) but as soon as we were done climbing the first storey, we just couldn’t make it anymore. It wasn’t like a regular apartment steps, climbing up one floor was like walking up a a two storey apartment and there were at least 5 stories for this particular tower!
There were also other places of interests like the archeological museum, the modern and contemporary art museum, the bird museum as well as the wine museum. But we were all already quite tired.
So the three of us slowly walked back to the car and stopped by to take some pictures. There were some points where you could admire scenes like these :
This is such a beautiful view. The people who live here are so lucky to be able to wake up to this pristine view every day.
And here I am with my dear friend
And that was our trip to San Gimignano! Next and final post up about Tuscany : Our trip to a natural spa!