Today was, well, another learning curve. By our NEXT trip to Italy, we’ll have this down pat. We misread the bus schedule for today (it is different on Saturday and Sunday) and thought that the earliest we could take a bus into town was 11:30ish. We were on that bus. We headed to the train station, as we had prepaid our train travel for five days, and didn’t want to pay any more travel expenses than necessary, so we were bound and determined to travel by train today.
San Gimignano is a small hill town not too far from here. It’s full name translates to “San Gimignano of the Beautiful Towers”, as originally there were more than 70 defense towers in this Medieval town. 14 of those towers still survive today. The town was originally part of the Francigena Pilgrimage route, but the plague of 1348 affected them as well. They became a “backwater” town, and the architecture never changed or grew.
By the time we caught the bus to town, the next bus to the train station, the train to Poggibonsi, and then the bus to San Gimignano from there, we arrived at 2 PM. We checked the bus schedule, and realized that we had only 1 hour to be back at the bus stop to get home before the last bus to the B & B. OK. We booked up the hill to the Duomo to see the frescoes. We arrived about 2:15, only to find a sign on the church that today, for some reason, they were closing at 2:30, last admission at 2:00. What can you do?
We poked our heads into the exit and managed to sneak a couple of pics before the lady nicely told us that we were not allowed, so we walked back down the hill. We window shopped, walked over to a couple of scenic overlooks to grab a couple of photos, and bought our bus tickets back to the train station.
After waiting almost an hour for the final bus of the day which would take us back to the B & B, we did a bit of grocery shopping (hopefully enough to last us until we leave for Edinburgh), and were home about 6:30. Seven hours of our day for 45 minutes of enjoyment and exploration. At least the views from the bus windows were great!
Dinner was pasta and salad, and was delicious! We save a lot of money by not eating out all of the time, and the jar of peanut butter that we brought with us gets a workout every day that we have long travel. Tomorrow we plan to spend the day here, getting organized for our final two days. Those days will be heavy travel days, so a relaxing day in preparation for that will be welcome.
The exterior and interior of the church . . .
One of the surviving towers.
Views from the town
From the front seat of the bus
Dinner . . .