April 2019, Italy No.2: World Heritage Site, Historic Centre of San Gimignano

April 2019 Italy
April 2019 Italy

GW 2019, the last of the Heisei era and the first trip of 2035, was to central Italy. It had been 12 years since I had travelled to Tuscany, but I decided to spend one night in San Gimignano, a World Heritage town representing Tuscany, which I had not had time to visit 12 years before.

Of course we took a place to stay in the old town. So you need to park your car outside the old town. As you would expect from a world heritage site in Tuscany, there were many parking lots surrounding the old town.


However, as it was Sunday, the parking lot was very crowded. We arrived a little before 16:00 in the evening, and since it was still before everyone left, we had to go around the old town until we could park safely. However, when 17:00 approached and I started to arrive home, the cars gradually started to leave the parking lot and I was able to park safely.

It took us at least 5 minutes to walk from the parking lot to the middle of the old town. The old town is a bit elevated so you have to climb stairs and hills. We parked in a car park on the north side of the village.

I took this picture the next morning. There were certainly not many cars and people on Monday morning.


It was a bit of a rush, but we visited the Duomo and Palazzo del Popolo because the main tourist attractions still seemed to be open.


Palazzo del Popolo has been turned into a municipal museum, where you can admire the religious works of the Middle Ages, although there are few exhibits.


And the symbol of San Gimignano is, after all, the tower that rises several towers. It seems to have a bloody history, but now it is one of the main attractions of the city. You can climb one of them from the Municipal Museum of Art here. You have to take the stairs, but since the inside of the tower is hollowed out, you can climb the large iron stairs without difficulty.


On the stairs there was a projection mapping about the history of San Gimignano. At the end, for some reason, we were flying off into space.


Unfortunately the weather was cloudy as you can see, but it’s a great place to see the land of Tuscany.


The main attractions are only Palazzo del Popolo with this tower and the Duomo next to it.


The rest of the day is spent exploring the city. This is fun not to mention. It seems to be a synonym of a medieval town full of romance. It is the best for those who like walking in the city.


I have seen many old European cities, but I still feel that Italy, even more so as a World Heritage Site, is even more beautiful and attractive.

And since San Gimignano is located in the heart of Tuscany, it is naturally famous for its wine. Especially the local white wine is chosen by DOHC for its high quality. Of course I bought it as a souvenir.

The only souvenir and shopping is wine. It’s still early in the trip.

If there is good wine, there is of course good food in this city. After sightseeing and strolling, we went back to the hotel and rested for a while before going back to the city to go to a restaurant. We chose this restaurant that we found on TripAdvisor.

レストランのサイト(TripAdvisor): Ristorante San Martino 26


What a surprise, there was a Japanese apprentice, and I was able to receive support in Japanese all the time. The owner of this restaurant runs several restaurants in Tuscany, and he seems to favor Japanese people. Now, the Japanese young man working here seems to be hired for a limited period of time, but it seems that he was hired because of the circumstances.

It is true that the atmosphere of the restaurant and the food had a vaguely Asian feel to it. The quality of the food was good.


In addition, there were several other good restaurants on the street where this restaurant is located. There was also a restaurant that was awarded one Michelin star. Here it is.

When we finished our meal and left the restaurant, the town was surprisingly quiet. Apparently, there were not so many tourists staying in this town itself. It might have been because it was Sunday.


The night of San Gimignano passed quietly in the slightly rainy weather. It was only the second day of the trip.