Today we made our way to Florence via Siena and a winery in the Chianti region.
In Siena, we met our tour guide and we went to Saint Dominics Church first which had nice frescoes inside and Saint Caterinas head. Siena pretty much started the first bank/banking system so was a very wealthy town in terms of finance, but now survives on tourism. The bank Monte dei Paschi was founded in 1472 and is currently the oldest surviving bank in the world. They are also fmous for Palio races which happen twice a year and involve 2 horses/riders racing bareback around a track. In Siena the people are also divided into contradas which is like saying what area/family you are from. Their contradas are named after animlas or objects eg. Panther, Owl, Seashell contradas.
There is also a mythical legend of a she-wolf so you can see quite a few sculptures of her every few meters. We then saw a beautiful cathedral in Piazza del Duomo. The colours are so beautiful and made with marble. There is also a side to it which is 1/2 finished as they abandoned it halfway through building.
We then went to the main square, Piazza del Campo, a huge sloping square which was very cool. After that, me, Jess, Cheryll, Katie and Dean went to a pizzeria for lunch where we sat for 2 hours because we couldn't be bothered seeing more of Siena.
We then left for the winery/wine tasting at Villa Buonasera where we met Barbara the lady who owns the vineyard. First we toured the factory where they make and age wine. We could climb into the tank which they first put the grapes in (they use Sangiovese grapes for their wine) but only Luke and Cheryll did. Also saw the oak barrels as well as where they bottle/label the wine.
After that we had wine tasting where we tried 2007 Rose, 2003 Red and 1999 Red. They were all so nice and we finished off with vin santo, a dessert wine/liquer. The dinner was also pretty good (pasta, risotto, burschetta, chees ande proscuitto) and we could buy some of their wine after.
After wine tasting we got on the bus, but not before Stefano, our bus driver sprayed the bottom of our shoes with god knows what, to either clean/disinfect them against what bacteria I have no idea. FYI he is a very good singer too.
We left for Florence and on the way had minor traffic issues mainly caused by the way Stefano drives etc. haha quite funny watching him drive and cussing at other people.
Once we got to the hotel me, Jess and Cheryll went to do laundry where they ended up shutting while our clothes were still in the dryer. I guess we could have been less lazy and left dinner to check our clothes. I guess we can wake up earlier to get them tomorrow. (although thats annoying becuase we were able to sleep in a bit later tomorrow too)