Siena, located on the hilltop dividing the basin of the Arbia from the one of the Elsa, is particular also for the framework in which the city is inserted, immerged in a suggestive countryside with changing colours, where the intense green of the woods and the vineyards moves to the brown ochre of the hills covered by cypresses.
We are on the Lands of Siena, with their medieval villages located on the top of the hills, but also small jewels rich of art and history one can find just outside the city walls.
It is enough to get out through the San Marco Door to be immerged in the large park rich of history of the Castle of Belcaro, which finds its roots back in the 12th century. Otherwise you can continue for about two kilometres and a half outside the Ovile Door in order to reach the Basilica of the Obedience built on the order of San Bernardino from Siena.
You should also visit, without any doubt, the Castle of the Four Towers, located in the periphery of Siena, in "Locality Santa Regina", and that represents the most important rock of medieval origin (14th – 15th centuries) preserved, almost intact, in the surroundings of the city, with its four squared towers.
Still nowadays the mystic atmosphere of the Hermitage of Lecceto is touching the soul, just nine kilometres away form Siena: hidden in a thick wood of Holm oaks, it suddenly appears at the end of an earth road.
The most antique document talking about it is dating back to 1223, but without any doubt its founding is well earlier to this date. Symbol of the Augustinian spirituality during the centuries, it has remained nowadays a place of contemplative life thanks to the community of Augustinian monks living there, maintaining lively the memory of Saint Catherine who has found there her confessor and of Saint Bernardino who regularly visited it.
But the spirituality is present all along the Lands of Siena, also through the Via Francigena, the antique medieval road that from Canterbury was leading to Rome.
But all the Lands of Siena are a crossing of meetings, culture, history, flavours: the ideal environment to feed the eyes and the spirit, cheering with the wine and tasting the typical products immerged in a reality absolutely unique.