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Shopping, Parking & Getting Around

  • Shopping

    Alabaster-working is Volterra’s exceptional craft. Shop in one of the alabaster showrooms of the bigger firms or visit a traditional alabaster-craftsman in his cramped workshop. The pleasure of shopping for alabaster in Volterra lies in the way the techniques practised today echo those used in Etruscan times. Visiting an alabaster workshop proves the point. Even the tools are very similar to those used in Etruscan times. Today’s alabaster workers can easily understand the techniques used by Etruscan alabaster masters on cinerary urns because their prehistoric tools were virtually the same as those found on a contemporary workbench. Prices depend on the type, colour and veining of the alabaster, with colours ranging from creamy white to murky yellow.

  • Cooperativa Artieri Alabastri

    Founded in 1895, this co-operative aims to safeguard the traditional alabaster craft. The shop and showrooms are in the centre of town, on the main square. But to see the workshops you need to head to the outskirts of town. The association also runs alabaster tours and experiences.

    Address: Piazza dei Priori 5, Volterra

  • Alabastri Lavorati Italiani

    This family-run firm is one of the most respected alabaster-crafting workshops in town. Their showroom is certainly the most elegant. Choose from lamps, sculpture, figurines, chess-pieces, table-tops, picture frames: so much can be carved from alabaster.

    Address: Piazza Martiri della Liberta 5, Volterra

  • Alabastri Ducceschi

    The third generation of an alabaster-crafting family us still at work on traditional designs.

    Address: Località San Quirico, Strada Statale (SS) 439, Volterra

  • Alabastri Rossi Camillo

    Dating from 1912, this alabaster workshop offers demonstrations of the craft.

    Address: Via Lungo le Mura del Mandorlo 7, Volterra

  • Parking

    The last few kilometres of road to Volterra can be pretty tortuous. Volterra, like most Tuscan towns, operates a strict ZTL system, a Limited Traffic Zone. This means that the Centro Storico (historic centre) is essentially closed to traffic, particularly for non-residents.

    Cars will need to be left outside Volterra or at the Piazza Martiri della Liberta car park in the south of town. This is the most convenient parking spot, and also convenient for the bus station and a taxi rank. Other car parks ring the town and include: Parcheggio di Porta Fiorentina (to the north); Parcheggio Porta Docciola (to the north-east); and Parcheggio di Vittorio Veneto (to the east).

    Advice on ZTLs: You may see other cars crossing the ZTL boundary (Limited Traffic Zone) and assume you can proceed. Not so. The drivers crossing into the ZTL zone will probably be locals and have residents’ permits. Visitors do not so are liable to fines. Zones are monitored by cameras, so tickets are issued immediately and automatically, as soon as (and each time) the car crosses the ZTL boundary.

    See Volterra’s city website for a downloadable map of parking sites in town:

  • Getting there & getting around

    Volterra may feel in the middle of nowhere and that is part of its charm, and part of the reason it is far more peaceful than San Gimignano. In reality, by car, it is around 40 km from the coast, 29 km from San Gimignano, 47 km from Siena, 63 km from Pisa and 70 km from Florence.

    Regular bus services connect Volterra with San Gimignano (via Colle Val d’Elsa), and there are also buses that connect with Pisa (via Pontedera), Siena and Florence, as well as with the unspoilt Tuscan coast at Cecina. Volterra's bus station is on Piazza Martiri della Libertà.

    Volterra is not an easy place to reach by rail. The most convenient stations are Cecina and Pontedera, but from there you still have to catch a bus to Volterra.

Experience an official tuscany tour with

Small-Group Florence Food Walking Tour

Discover the gourmet delights of Florence on a 3.5-hour small-group walking tour! Follow your expert guide through the city and eat and drink like the locals. Sip rich Italian coffee, browse a typical Florentine delicatessen, explore the San Lorenzo Central Market, visit a wine shop and sample the best gelato in town!

This small-group walking tour is limited to twelve people to ensure a more personalized experience.

from 81,3 US Dollar

Cooking Lesson: From The Market To The Table in Florence

Learn how to prepare a typical Italian meal from scratch thanks to a professional chef, and impress all your friends and family at home! With this 4.5-hour cooking class, you will start the tour with a visit to the Central Market in Florence, then you will immerse yourself in the cooking class and top off the experience with a delicious lunch with your own creations.

from 98,81 US Dollar

Day Trip to Venice by Bus from San Gimignano

Visit one of the most romantic cities in the world on a day tour from San Gimignano. Explore the city on your own in all its beauty and charm during the morning, and get together with your expert guide in the afternoon for a guided tour of Venice's main sightseeing spots.There is also the option for a gondola ride.

from 148,84 US Dollar

Skip the Line: Vatican City Day Trip from Florence by High-Speed Train

Swap the sights of Florence for Vatican City on a day trip by high-speed train. After traveling to the capital, meet a local guide for a skip-the-line tour of the Vatican Museums and St Peter’s Basilica, two UNESCO World Heritage sites that many believe to be the holiest spots in Christendom. Learn about its impressive trove of art, including Michelangelo’s ‘Creation of Adam,’ and visit the Sistine Chapel and Museo Pio-Clementino among other highlights. In the afternoon, make use of a metro ticket to explore and discover Trastevere, the Trevi Fountain and more.

from 223,88 US Dollar
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