Siena, art and the art of living

Wednesday, 18 May 2011 - 03:57 pm (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: General, Sustainability, UNESCO World Heritage
Reading Time:  4 minutes

Historic Centre © Tango7174

Historic Centre © Tango7174

Siena is a city in Tuscany, Italy. It is the capital of the province of Siena. The historic centre of Siena has been declared by UNESCO a World Heritage Site. It is one of the nation’s most visited tourist attractions, with over 163,000 international arrivals in 2008. Siena is famous for its cuisine, art, museums, medieval cityscape and the Palio, a horse race held twice yearly.

The Palio di Siena is a traditional medieval horse race run around the Piazza del Campo twice each year, on 2 July and 16 August. The event is attended by large crowds, and is widely televised. Seventeen Contrade (which are city neighbourhoods originally formed as battalions for the city’s defence) vie for the trophy: a painted banner, or Palio bearing an image of the Blessed Virgin Mary. For each race a new Palio is commissioned by well-known artists and Palios won over many years can often be seen in the local Contrade museum. During each Palio period, the city is decked out in lamps and flags bearing the Contrade colours.

The main activities are tourism, services, agriculture, handicrafts and light industry. In this area, the most important financial activities are those related to the bank Monte dei Paschi di Siena. There are also important appearances of the university and the hospital, which employ thousands of people and serves a catchment area much wider than the already large territory province. In the territory there is a dense network of micro-enterprises (less than 10,000) active in trade and tourism. The last few years have seen increased attention to biotechnology and research. As a consequence, local banking enterprises have focused on developing funding and supporting research and “startup” enterprises.

Palazzo Medici © MarkusMark Siena Panorama © Lew Siena seen from Torre del Mangia © Taty2007 Siena Cathedral © Myrabella Piazza Salimbeni © Tango7174 Piazza del Campo © Ricardo André Frantz Piazza del Campo © Massimo Catarinella Typical street view © Rokaszil Historic Centre © Tango7174
<
>
Siena seen from Torre del Mangia © Taty2007
Siena’s cathedral (Duomo), begun in the 12th century, is one of the great examples of Italian Romanesque-Gothic architecture. Its main façade was completed in 1380. It is unusual for a cathedral in that its axis runs north-south. This is because it was originally intended to be the largest cathedral in the world, with a north-south transept and an east-west nave, as is usual. After the completion of the transept and the building of the east wall (which still exists and may be climbed by the public via an internal staircase) the money ran out and the rest of the cathedral was abandoned.

The shell-shaped Piazza del Campo, the town square, which houses the Palazzo Pubblico and the Torre del Mangia, is another architectural treasure, and is famous for hosting the Palio horse race. The Palazzo Pubblico, itself a great work of architecture, houses yet another important art museum. Included within the museum is Ambrogio Lorenzetti’s series of frescos on the good government and the results of good and bad government and also some of the finest frescoes of Simone Martini and Pietro Lorenzetti.

On the Piazza Salimbeni is the Palazzo Salimbeni, a notable building and also the medieval headquarters of Monte dei Paschi di Siena, one of the oldest banks in continuous existence and a major player in the Sienese economy.

To inform you about latest news most of the city, town or tourism websites offer a newsletter service and/or operate Facepage pages/Twitter accounts. Read more on City of Siena, Siena Tourism, Wikitravel Siena and Wikipedia Siena. Learn more about the use of photos.




Recommended posts:

Share this post: (Please note data protection regulations before using buttons)

Theme Week Berlin - Sony Center

Theme Week Berlin - Sony Center

[caption id="attachment_146321" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Joaquin Casares[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]At Potsdamer Platz, the originally bustling heart of old Berlin, the Sony Center and the buildings in the surrounding brought the district back to life. Events, concerts, film premieres and lots more are great reasons to revisit and rediscover the Sony Center over and over again. The Sony Center at Potsdamer Platz, home to the corporation’s European headquarters, consists of an ensemble of buildings surrounding...

[ read more ]

Theme Week Catalonia - Salou

Theme Week Catalonia - Salou

[caption id="attachment_151317" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Port and Beach © Salvador Sáinz[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Salou is a municipality of the comarca of Tarragonès, in the province of Tarragona. The city is approximately 10 km from Tarragona and Reus on the Costa Daurada and 112 km from Barcelona. Aside from its string of beaches interrupted by rocky coves, and its landscaped promenade, one of its main attractions is the PortAventura resort. Salou's main promenade is the Passeig Jaume I, which runs along the coast...

[ read more ]

Theme Week Channel Islands - Alderney

Theme Week Channel Islands - Alderney

[caption id="attachment_151198" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Fort Clonque © Andree Stephan[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Alderney is the most northerly of the Channel Islands. It is part of the Bailiwick of Guernsey, a British Crown dependency. It is 3 miles (4.8 km) long and 1.5 miles (2.4 km) wide. The area is 3 square miles (7.8 km2), making it the third largest island of the Channel Islands, and the second largest in the Bailiwick. It is around 10 miles (16 km) to the west of La Hague in the Cotentin Peninsula, Normandy, in...

[ read more ]

Sylt, the Queen of the North Sea

Sylt, the Queen of the North Sea

[caption id="attachment_152952" align="aligncenter" width="590"] House Kliffende in Kampen © Noop1958[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="Deutsch Female" buttontext="Diesen Beitrag vorlesen"]Sylt has been established as a holiday retreat for the German financial aristocracy during the 70s and 80s, were they created permanent residences or at least bought in on a high scale. Especially in the summer months the A to Z celebrity-density peak, but also outside the main holiday season usually much value is given to the "see and be seen" game. Major events are arising if the island is surrounde...

[ read more ]

Fifth Avenue in Midtown Manhattan

Fifth Avenue in Midtown Manhattan

[caption id="attachment_192927" align="aligncenter" width="590"] The Pierre Hotel © Taj Hotels, Resorts and Palaces/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Fifth Avenue is a major thoroughfare in the borough of Manhattan in New York City. It stretches north from Washington Square Park in Greenwich Village to West 143rd Street in Harlem. It is considered one of the most expensive and elegant streets in the world. Between 49th Street and 60th Street, Fifth Avenue is lined with prestigious boutiques and flagship stores and is consi...

[ read more ]

The congress and university city of Innsbruck

The congress and university city of Innsbruck

[caption id="attachment_160769" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Chithiraiyan[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Innsbruck is the capital city of the federal state of Tyrol in western Austria. It is located in the Inn Valley at the junction with the Wipptal (Sill River), which provides access to the Brenner Pass, some 30 km (18.6 mi) south of Innsbruck. Located in the broad valley between high mountains, the Nordkette (Hafelekar, 2,334 metres or 7,657 feet in the north, Patscherkofel (2,246 m or 7,369 ft) and Serles (2,718 m o...

[ read more ]

German Marshall Fund in Washington, D.C.

German Marshall Fund in Washington, D.C.

[caption id="attachment_192414" align="aligncenter" width="590"]R Street and New Hampshire Avenue NW - The German Marshall Fund © AgnosticPreachersKid/cc-by-sa-4.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Marshall Plan (officially the European Recovery Program, ERP) was an American initiative to aid Western Europe, in which the United States gave over $12 billion (nearly $100 billion in 2016 US dollars) in economic assistance to help rebuild Western European economies after the end of World War II. The plan was in operation for four years...

[ read more ]

The Palace of Nations in Geneva

The Palace of Nations in Geneva

[caption id="attachment_168235" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Palace of Nations © flickr.com - Ville Oksanen/cc-by-sa-2.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Palace of Nations is the home of the United Nations Office at Geneva, located in Geneva, Switzerland. It was built between 1929 and 1938 to serve as the headquarters of the League of Nations. It has served as the home of the United Nations Office at Geneva since 1946 when the Secretary-General of the United Nations signed a Headquarters Agreement with the Swiss authorities, a...

[ read more ]

Theme Week Vatican City - Vatican Museums

Theme Week Vatican City - Vatican Museums

[caption id="attachment_191891" align="aligncenter" width="590"] Main complex of the Vatican Museums © F. Bucher/cc-by-2.5[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]The Vatican Museums (Italian: Musei Vaticani; Latin: Musea Vaticana) are Christian and art museums located within the city boundaries of the Vatican City. They display works from the immense collection amassed by popes throughout the centuries including several of the most renowned Roman sculptures and most important masterpieces of Renaissance art in the world. The museums contain...

[ read more ]

Longleat House in Warminster

Longleat House in Warminster

[caption id="attachment_239315" align="aligncenter" width="590"] © Saffron Blaze/cc-by-sa-3.0[/caption][responsivevoice_button voice="UK English Female" buttontext="Listen to this Post"]Longleat is a stately home about 4 miles (7 km) west of Warminster in Wiltshire, England. A leading and early example of the Elizabethan prodigy house, it is a Grade I listed building and the seat of the Marquesses of Bath. Longleat is set in 1,000 acres (400 ha) of parkland landscaped by Capability Brown, along with 4,000 acres (1,600 ha) of let farmland and 4,000 acres (1,600 ha) of woodland, which i...

[ read more ]

Return to TopReturn to Top
Federal Guesthouse Petersberg © Tohma
Königswinter on River Rhine

Königswinter is a town and summer resort in the Rhein-Sieg district, in North Rhine-Westphalia, with approximatly 40,000 inhabitants. It is...

Town Hall © Anima
Tours, the Garden of France

Tours is a city in central France, the capital of the Indre-et-Loire department. It is located on the lower reaches...

El Médano © Berthold Werner
Theme Week Canary Islands – Tenerife

Tenerife is the largest and most populous of the seven Canary Islands with a land area of 2,034.38 km² (785.47...

Close