fun things to do with kids in siena  italy   Travel for Kids
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Siena

Siena
Siena is famous for its distinctive striped cathedral, and the Palio, a four day celebration in July and August, a tradition since the Middle Ages, culminating in a splashy pageant and horse race around the Piazza del Campo. In the race, ten riders, wearing Renaissance clothing decorated with colorful symbols, ride bareback around the Piazza three times.
  When you hit Piazza del Campo, the big piazza in the center of town, first climb up the Torre del Mangia, the tall bell tower of the Palazzo Pubblico. You might be there when they ring the bells, a marvelous experience.
    Palazzo Pubblico To glimpse what life what in 14th century Siena, look for the Lorenzetti frescoes in the Sala della Pace in the Palazzo Pubblico. The frescoes are one big long picture showing the streets of Siena, town folk riding on horses into the countryside, people working in the fields, shops and city life, the medieval school room.
    The Duomo (cathedral) stands out like a zebra at the wild animal park. Outside, there is the striped bell tower, plus ornate gothic carving all over the façade, a rose window and some mosaics, tacked on later for good measure. Inside, take a close look at the Pisano stone pulpit, jammed with beautifully carved scenes of the Madonna and Child, and Last Judgment (people squirming in hell), held up by columns positioned on the backs of lions.
family tours siena italy

In the Palio, riders are drawn from seventeen historic neighborhoods (contrade), each with a different symbol – dragon, eagle, snail, owl, panther, giraffe, etc. Take a three hour private walking tour through Siena, where you'll visit different contrade and see a horse that's won the race:

    The Palio - Siena Walking Tour
kids books italy
     
Stravaganza: City of Stars  
City of Stars (Stravaganza trilogy)
Mary Hoffman

A fabulous fantasy-adventure begins when a talisman transports Georgia from present day to Remora, a 16th century city that resembles Siena. Each district of the city competes to win the legendary horse race, and teenage Georgia finds herself in another time and place, riding in the race. (Chapter book)

 

(More children's books on other Italy pages)
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