Siena and Piazza del Campo
Founded by Emperor Augusto as a Roman colony, Siena since the Middle Ages, was at the center of important trade routes. Due to its economic and political importance, Siena became an important medieval trading center. Like other cities in Tuscany, after many battles, Siena came under the dominion of Florence, but the beauty of the city and its monuments are due mostly to the flourishing period of the Republic of Siena (from the twelfth to the sixteenth century).
Since 1995, the historic center of Siena has become part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site, whose symbol is undoubtedly Piazza del Campo with its original shell shape. Known primarily for the performance of the famous Palio di Siena, Piazza del Campo preserves important architectural monuments. The Town Hall was built between 1298 and 1308 by the Government of the Republic of Siena as the headquarters of "Government of the Nine". Next to it stands the Torre del Mangia the bell tower, one of the oldest towers of the city and one of the higher in Italy. The name comes from the first keeper of the tower, nicknamed "mangiaguadagni" for his ability to squander the money in the food.
In front of them there is the Fonte Gaia, original synthesis between tradition and innovation Gothic Renaissance. Realized in the last two decades of the 1300s was decorated by Jacopo della Quercia in the early '400. Not to miss is the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta in Piazza del Duomo, one of the most significant examples of Romanesque-Gothic architecture in Italy. Inside you will find important works including the pulpit by Nicola Pisano, and the Piccolomini Library with frescoes by Pinturicchio, built by the future Pope Pius III to preserve the heritage of the books collected by his uncle Pope II.