Go Back  Fodor's Forum > Destinations > Europe
Reload this Page > Need suggestions for Sienna and Orvieto
Notices

Need suggestions for Sienna and Orvieto

Reply

Aug 31st, 2014, 10:03 PM
  #1
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 28
Need suggestions for Sienna and Orvieto

We're two seniors traveling a month in Italy and have 7 nights to spend in Sienna and Orvieto end of Oct, 2014. Would love suggestions for mid range or budget priced hotels/bnbs in city centers. We just need clean and a lift or not many stairs. We have the rest of our trip planned, but I seem stuck on these two places. Are 4 nights in Siena and 3 in Orvieto too many? We won't have a car and will need public transportation or tours.

Would love advice on tours out of Siena and also, places to eat. We'll take the train from Orvieto to Rome and fly home from there. We have 6 nights in Rome and have rented an apartment there.
NevadaGranny is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 31st, 2014, 11:41 PM
  #2
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 11,190
That would be too much time for me without a car. Those two towns are fairly close to each other that I'm not sure it's worth packing up and changing hotels. You could visit Orvieto from Siena or Rome.

I would stay in Florence where there is more to do, especially in the evening, and more transportation options.
adrienne is offline  
Reply With Quote
Aug 31st, 2014, 11:43 PM
  #3
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 11,190
This is where I stayed in Orvieto. They have an elevator and are just a short walk from the Cathedral. I'm not sure how far the hotel is from the funicular from the train station as we had a car.
adrienne is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 1st, 2014, 02:06 AM
  #4
 
Join Date: Feb 2014
Posts: 6,534
I can't help you out specifically with a hotel in either place but just want to make sure you are aware that both Siena and Orvieto are steep hilltowns. Siena in particular is steep and has many stairs within the town. And where there are not stairs there are steep streets. My recollection of Orvieto is that more areas of Orvieto are flat (in addition to the funicular elevator that transports people up the hill from the train station) . However it is a much smaller town overall.

If you are not fazed by that report then I would say that 4 nights in Siena and 3 in Orvieto gives you the opportunity to enjoy these places in a very relaxed way and gives you the chance for day trips out of town. Siena has a few that can be done by bus or train (give a lot of consideration to taking the train to Buonconvento for lunch and a stroll around and visiting its small museums. It is flat and delicious and makes a nice break from hills!) From Orvieto you might want to book an excursion to a winery (white wine) and consider that for Siena as well (red wine).

Contrary to what was posted abov it is a complicated trip from Siena to Orvieto if you don't have a ca so if you are not staying there but still want to see it then a day trip from Rome (not Siena) is the way to go.

Someplace you might find quite lovely for a multi-night stay is the town of Arezzo which is flat and filled with beautiful architecture and marvelous antique stores (it is the antique vendors capital of most of Italy). From Arezzo it is possible to make some day trips to small scenic towns by bus or to Perugia (where an escalator does most of the hill climbing for you).

But without knowing your entire itinerary for a month and what you most want to do it is hard to make suggestions if you decide to cut nights in Arezzo or Orvieto and substitute some place else.
sandralist is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 1st, 2014, 02:54 AM
  #5
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 6,057
From Siena, it's also possible to visit Montalcino by bus, except on Sundays.

I agree that Arezzo is a good base; it's not spectacular nor famous, but to me it's a quintessentially Tuscan town. In addition to the antique dealers, it also has an outdoor antiques market on the first Sunday of every month, and the Saturday of the same weekend.

In the Church of San Francesco, Arezzo has one of the most splendid of Renaissance fresco cycles, the Legend of the True Cross, by Piero della Francesca. There's a small museum under the church which often has very interesting temporary art exhibits.

Arezzo has direct trains to Assisi, another very beautiful town. It's most famous for its associations with St. Francis, but it's also worth visiting for its scenic surroundings, its craft shops, and another beautiful fresco cycle, in the Upper Basilica di San Francesco, by Giotto.

Finally, Arezzo is also on a direct train line for Florence, if you want to go to there for a day.
bvlenci is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 1st, 2014, 06:57 AM
  #6
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 28
Guess I should have mentioned we have 3 nights in Florence and will be leaving from there for somewhere in Tuscany/ Umbria. I will check out Arezzo. I thought there was a train or bus from Siena to Orvieto.

Adrienne, where did you stay in Orvieto?
NevadaGranny is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 1st, 2014, 07:02 AM
  #7
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Posts: 1,960
NevadaGranny:

I spent eight days in Siena in 2013 and took day trips to Arezzo and San Gimignano. I think four days in Siena will be fine. Yes, the streets of Siena are steep, but if you take your time, they're navigable. I'm in my sixties, have a metal prosthesis in my left leg, and got around without any problem.

I loved my stay at Hotel Santa Catarina. It is, however, about 100 yards down from the Porta Romana entrance to the old city, or about a 15- to 20-minute walk to the Campo. I enjoyed the walk, but you'd have to decide for yourself about that. The hotel gets uniformly strong reviews. You can take a closer look at Hotel Santa Catarina on Trip Adviser and at: www.hscsiena.it

Here are some restaurants in Siena I would recommend:

Antica Osteria da Divo
Via Franciosa n.25/29
(near Duomo and Piazza del Campo)
Website: Yes
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 05 77286053

Ristorante Enoteca Millevini
Fortezza Meicea 1
(Inside the Medici Fortress; Fine courtyard dining)
Web: Yes
Email: [email protected]
Phone: 05 77247121

Campagnia dei Vinattieri
Via Delle Terme 79
Web: Yes
OPEN SUNDAY (Many restaurants aren't)
Email: [email protected],net
Phone: 05 77236568

Osteria del Gusto
Via dei Fusari 9/11/13
(near the Campo)
Phone:05 77271076

Tre Cristi
Vicolo di Provenzano 1/7
Web: www.trecristi.com
Phone: 05 77280608

Osteria Le Logge
Via del Porrione 33
(Just off the Campo)
Web: osterialelogge.it
Phone: 05 7748013 or 05 77224797

Quattro Cantoni
Ristorante Pizzeria
Piazza Postieri 5
Phone: 05 77601366

If you go to Arezzo, I would recommend:

Miseria e Nobilta
Via Piaggia di San Bartolomeo 2
Web: Yes
Phone: 05 7521245

If you go to San Gimignano, you might try:

La Mangiatoia
Via Mainardi 5
Web: [email protected]
Phone: 05 77941528

For the restaurants I haven't provided the URLs, you can probably get them by googling the restaurant or by going on Trip Adviser. I made reservations at all the Siena restaurants (except Quattro Cantoni, where I had lunch twice) via e-mail before I got to Siena. I just walked into the restaurants in Arezzo and San Gimignano.

Siena is a lovely city that is worth much more than the usual day trip from Florence.

Have fun.
wanderful is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 1st, 2014, 07:07 AM
  #8
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 11,190
Sorry - forgot to include the link.

http://www.valentinohotel.com/en/

There is a train and bus to Orvieto. Unfortunately, the shortest trip leaves at noon. There's a 9:45 bus/train combination that takes 2.5 hours. Not the best connections but not complicated either.

It's faster to visit Orvieto from Rome.

A fabulous place to visit, if you like frescoes, is Monte Oliveto Maggiore.

Do you definitely not want a car? The driving in Italy is so easy and pleasant, as long as you aren't driving in cities. Winding roads with very little traffic.
adrienne is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 1st, 2014, 07:37 AM
  #9
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 28
My husband is 85 and a good driver, but I'm not sure he can even rent a car in Italy and I know I don't want the stress!

I'll have to check out those restaurants, Wanderful.

Sandralist, thanks for all the information.
NevadaGranny is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 1st, 2014, 08:20 AM
  #10
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 30,530
I've stayed in both Siena and Orvieto multiple times. There are day trips you can take from both if you want. Do you have 7 nights each town or 7 nights to split between the two?

While there is a very budget convent hotel (Hotel Alma Domus) in Siena (about 75€ per night), it has some sloping steps to reach it and another set of steps in the courtyard. They do have an elevator inside. If you have 7 nights (or even 3-4), you might prefer an apartment.

>>>I thought there was a train or bus from Siena to Orvieto.<<<

You would take the train. Siena to Chiusi-Chianciano and change to Orvieto there. Sometimes Trenitalia will list the connection between Siena to Chiusi as a bus, but mostly it's the regional train.

From Siena, you can take a bus to several hill towns for day trips (not on Sundays). There is often a gap in afternoon service of a few hours so plan accordingly. You can also take the train to a few (such as Buonconvento). The Siena tourist office has lots of day trips you can book (Pienza, Chianti area, San G/Volterra, vineyards, etc.).

Here is the bus map for the province of Siena.

http://www.sienamobilita.it/images/m...xtraurbano.jpg

In Orvieto, there are several local buses you can take for sightseeing such as to Civita di Bagnoregio (involves some steep walking though). It's not too difficult to reach Montepulicano from there (a few train stops from Orvieto to Chiusi and bus the rest of the way), but it's a pretty steep town. There are also quite a few day trip tours offered from the Orvieto tourist office.

>>>mid range or budget priced hotels/bnbs in city centers.<<<

This could mean anything. What do you want to spend?
kybourbon is online now  
Reply With Quote
Sep 1st, 2014, 09:19 AM
  #11
 
Join Date: Aug 2005
Posts: 7,651
We liked Hotel Duomo in Orvieto, right near the Duomo.

As mentioned Orvieto is on a hill top and you take funicular and bus to the duomo/piazza.
Once up in the actual town it is flat and very walkable. Not sure I'd spend 4 days there but 2 was very enjoyable. About a 2 hour train ride to Rome, on a main line.

Other consideration for a base is Perugia -- another hilltop place with a walkable pedestrianized center and (using escalators and funicular) access to other towns in Umbria and Tuscany.

In Siena look at Canon D'Oro hotel which is right in the old center of town.

I don't blame you for using public trans; we've done it often using trains and sometimes taxis from the station for unfamiliar towns/areas. Have used busses less often but they have been excellent. I know people often take a bus from Florence to Siena as more convenient.
annw is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 20th, 2014, 09:33 PM
  #12
Original Poster
 
Join Date: May 2014
Posts: 28
Thanks all for your recommendations. I copied most of your restaurant suggestions, Wanderful. We have a total of 8 different locations for our month in Italy, so 4 nights in Siena and 3 in Orvieto works for us. I found a hotel by the bus station in Siena and a lovely B & B just outside the wall in Orvieto. I think the owner there will pick us up from the train/bus and drive us up to Orvieto when we want to go there.

We've made arrangements for two Tours by Roberto to places outside Siena and we might find a tour from Orvieto. We'll try the TI in Siena to see if we can find a tour to St. G and Volterra on the same day. Most are from Florence and we're only there 3 nights and there's so much to see , we won't have time for countryside tours.
NevadaGranny is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 21st, 2014, 08:00 PM
  #13
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Posts: 3,955
I would visit Civita di Bagnoregio from Orvieto. We loved Orvieto but were only there for a day.
denisea is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 21st, 2014, 09:06 PM
  #14
 
Join Date: Jun 2009
Posts: 3,542
This is interesting in the Church of St. Francis in Siena:

http://www.therealpresence.org/eucharst/mir/siena.html

Didn't see very many people at all while I visited so I guess not many tourists know about it.

Loved Siena! Spent 2 nights and wished I had more!

Agree with restaurant recommendation for Antica Osteria da Divo. La Taverna de San Giuseppe is another very good one.
joannyc is offline  
Reply With Quote
Sep 22nd, 2014, 05:16 AM
  #15
 
Join Date: Oct 2003
Posts: 30,530
>>>I found a hotel by the bus station in Siena and a lovely B & B just outside the wall in Orvieto. I think the owner there will pick us up from the train/bus and drive us up to Orvieto when we want to go there<<<

I would stay more central for both. It makes it easier if you are out sightseeing to pop back in your room a bit and to go out for dinner at night.
kybourbon is online now  
Reply With Quote
 



Thread Tools
Search this Thread
Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are On



All times are GMT -8. The time now is 06:54 PM.