September 11, 2011, 10:54 AM
Country apartment outside Siena
You suggested maybe another good place for me to visit was Siena. After spending 4 days in Florence, I would like to stay in the countryside. Can you recommend a village to stay in close to Siena, where I can travel to and from by local transport. I am interested in self catering - apartment. Somewhere with lovely countryside views but has public transport to Siena or larger towns.Thank you
September 14, 2011, 04:48 PM
I highly recommend you stay in Siena or its immediate surrounding particularly since you'll be depending on public transportation. Smaller towns will have connections to the major towns and from there you'll then be able to head in other directions.
The hard part is finding an accommodation in the countryside with public transport nearby. By staying in Siena, a major hub for public transport, it would make more sense to stay there and since I've been there several times, I can assure you it doesn't feel like a large city.
I found two places that look ideal offering apartments away from the historical center, on a large property offering you the sense of the countryside with a large garden with pool.
This one, Borgo Grondaie, is actually less than 1 km from the Siena train station, which you can reach in about 10 min walking, making it ideal for both seeing Siena as well as day trips out of Siena. You can also just enjoy staying there, as the property says it is 4 acres.
This second one, Fontebenedetta, is just a little bit further away but still in the general area close to the station. Public buses #3 and #8 stop nearby and run to the station and to the center of Siena every 15 minutes. For this reason, another one in the area, Villa Scacciapensieri, would also be a good choice although it is a hotel and offers rooms with an on site restaurant than apartments.
Otherwise you'll have to search for apartments within the smaller towns, to guarantee you easy access to public transport. You could consider Certaldo as another possibility - not super close to Siena but on the train line between Florence to Siena. You'd be more of the countryside, but you have to stay within the town. Most farmhouses or villas that offer self-catering apartments tend to be in the middle of the countryside, with the only way to get to them being with your own car.
If you need further help in looking for a location, let me know - I'll try to search for other appropriate lodgings to suggest! I highly recommend Siena though - even staying in the center, there was no traffic and we had great views (the town is on several hills).
December 19, 2012, 07:40 AM
Re: Country apartment outside Siena
Thanks for all your help Lourdes.