A Travel Price Comparison for Italy Volterra vs. Siena for Food, Old Town, Couples, and Attractions

Should you visit Volterra or Siena?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Should I visit Volterra or Siena? This is a common question asked by many travelers. By figuring out which city has activities that align with your interests along with knowing which is more affordable, you'll understand where you can get more bang for your buck. So, let's dive into the details and the data, which all comes from actual travelers.

Volterra

Volterra is a historic, charming, and medieval town. This is a great small town that is just waiting to be explored. This is also a very beautiful destination which attracts plenty of visitors. It's also known for food, shopping, and museums.

Siena

Siena is a beautiful, romantic, and charming city. The famous beauty of this place is one of the main draws. It's also known for shopping, museums, and nightlife.

Volterra and Siena: Pros and Cons

Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Family-friendly
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Small town charm
  • Impressive beauty
Things to Consider
  • Less popular for nightlife
Pros
  • Popular museums and historical sights
  • Active nightlife
  • Good for couples and romance
  • Good for backpackers and budget travelers
  • Good for students
  • Impressive beauty
Things to Consider
  • Less family-friendly


Is there more to do in Volterra or Siena?

Tourists will generally find more to do in Siena. Although Volterra and Siena are both popular with visitors, Siena has more sights, activities, and attractions for travelers. Siena is more popular for its nightlife and impressive beauty, while Volterra is known for its food and small town charm. Siena is more touristy than Volterra and is known for its beautiful medieval architecture, its delicious local restaurants, and the twice yearly Palio horserace. It is also home to Piazza del Campo. Volterra is popular for its medieval history, its hilltop setting and its alabaster.

How is Volterra different from Siena?

Which is Better for a Holiday?

Let's take a look at the differences and similarities between Siena and Volterra. Then, you can decide for yourself which place is better for your next trip.

Are the Museums and Historical Sights Better in Volterra or Siena?

Volterra
Siena

Both Volterra and Siena have great landmarks and museums for visitors.

Volterra offers many unique museums, sights, and landmarks that will make for a memorable trip. For such a large town there are a huge number of historic sights packed into a small area. Check out the Roman Theater, the Etruscan Museum, and the Duomo.

Many visitors head to Siena specifically to visit some of its top-rated museums and other sights. At the heart of the city is Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta and Piazza del Campo. Other world famous sights include Palazzo Pubblico and Museo Civico, Torre del Mangia, and Pinacoteca Nazionale.


Is the Food Better in Volterra or Siena? Which Destination has the Best Restaurants?

Volterra
Siena

Volterra is very popular for its local cuisine and restaurants. Also, Siena is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its restaurants.

Volterra has long been recognized as a culinary destination with great restaurants. The town is surrounded by the region of truffles, so you'll find this item included in all kinds of recipes. Pumpkin sauce is also a specialty of the area and there are also many local cheeses. Many restaurants also have bruschetta as an appetizer.

Siena has a huge number of terrific restaurants. The town is all about local flavors and many restaurants use local ingredients in their dishes. Pecorino of Pienza is the local cheese, and you'll also find many cured meats. Local pasta dishes include wild boar ragu and a local spaghetti. You'll also find local meats such as lamb, rabbit, chicken and pork.

Is Volterra or Siena Better for Nightlife?

Volterra
Siena

Siena is a popular place for nightlife. However, Volterra is not particularly known for nightlife and partying.

Siena has an active nightlife scene for those who seek it out. The nightlife is laid back and relaxed. Most visitors enjoy socializing in the evening and meeting friends at Piazza del Campo. There are often live performances which you can enjoy as well as many cafes and wine bars around town.

Volterra doesn't have the most active nightlife scene. There are cozy bars and cafes where you can sip wine and soak up the atmosphere, but the town isn't known as a nightlife destination.

Is Volterra or Siena Better for its Old Town?

Volterra
Siena

It's fun to wander around the world-class old towns in both Volterra and Siena.

Volterra has a unique history which comes to life in its historic area. The walled town is perched on a hilltop and dates back to the 8th century BC. Visitors come specifically to explore its winding streets and stunning setting.

The old town of Siena is one of the most recognized in the world. The beautiful old town is filled with medieval brick buildings. At the heart of the city is Piazza del Campo, which is a lively square with many neighborhoods spreading out from there.


Is the Shopping Better in Volterra or Siena?

Volterra
Siena

Shopping is a popular activity in both Siena and Volterra.

Volterra is a great destination for shopping. Some of the streets are lined with boutique shops and one of the most popular things to buy in town is Alabaster. You'll also find plenty of Italian wine from the nearby vineyards.

Shopping is a popular activity when visiting Siena. The main shopping street in town is Via Banchi di Sopra, which has many boutiques that sell clothing, bags, and other items. The town also has many leather goods, ceramics, and other local items available.

Is Volterra or Siena Better for Families?

Volterra
Siena

Volterra is very good for its family-friendly activities. However, Siena is a mediocre city for its kid-friendly activities.

Volterra is a family-friendly place to visit. If you have a Twilight fan, this town is home to the Volturi, who are the royal family of vampires. For everyone else, its a charming town with medieval walls and wandering alleys that kids will enjoy exploring.

Siena is not always a place people visit with their families. The beauty and history may be lost to the little ones but there is a great atmosphere that even the young ones will appreciate. Kids will enjoy climbing to the top of Torre del Mangia or visiting one of the many playgrounds around town.

Is Volterra or Siena Better for Couples?

Volterra
Siena

With fun activities for couples, both Volterra and Siena make for a world-class place to visit.

Volterra makes for a terrific place to visit as a couple. It's unique atmosphere, amazing food, and medieval style make for a unique and world class couples destination. While many people visit as a day trip, you can spend the night and soak up the evening atmosphere as well.

For those traveling as a couple, Siena has plenty to offer. With its impressive beauty and long running history, this is a truly romantic city. The atmosphere is relaxed and there are plazas and neighborhoods that are great for exploring. There are also many great restaurants, superb wine, and world class sights that are not to be missed.


Is Volterra or Siena Better for Backpackers and Budget Travelers?

Volterra
Siena

Volterra and Siena are good places to visit for backpackers and budget travelers.

Plenty of budget travelers visit Volterra. There's only one or two hostels in town, so if you're looking for a more social backpacker setting, then this may not be your spot. It does make for a great day trip though and if you're more interested in culture than meeting other backpackers, then definitely stop by.

Siena is popular with backpackers and budget travelers. Many backpackers visit Siena as a daytrip from nearby Florence. While there are some affordable places to stay here, the atmosphere isn't as backpacker friendly as nearby Florence.

Is Volterra or Siena Better for Students?

Volterra
Siena

Siena is well known for students. However, Volterra is not popular with students.

Siena is a very popular city for students and younger travelers. It's home to one of the oldest universities in Italy, and it's a wonderful study abroad destination for any student who wants to spend some time in Italy.

Volterra is not popular with students.

Is Volterra or Siena Better for Public Transit? Which Is Easier to Get Around Without a Car?

Volterra
Siena

Siena is a popular place for its public transit. However, Volterra is not particularly known for times when you don't have a car.

You'll find some public transit in Siena, but it may not be enough to take you everywhere. TIEMME is the bus service that runs in and around town. Many lines pass through the train station and provide service from there.

Public transit is mostly limited in Volterra. Public transit isn't necessary as the city is best explored on foot.


Is Volterra or Siena a more walkable city?

Volterra
Siena

Volterra is very popular for its walkability. Also, Siena is not as famous, but is still a good city to visit for its high level of walkability.

It is easy to get around Volterra on foot. Most people explore the town on foot.

Siena is a very walkable town. The compact town center is best explored on foot.

For even more information, also check out Is Volterra Worth Visiting? and Is Siena Worth Visiting?.

Should I spend more time in Siena or Volterra?

How long in Volterra or Siena?

You'll be able to find lots of things to do in Volterra or Siena to fill your time. You can spend a similar amount of time exploring either. However, 1-2 days is a good amount of time to spend in either destination.

Families should spend more time in Volterra than Siena. Because of the many family-friendly attractions and fun things to do for kids in Volterra, it's a great place to visit with the whole family.

Backpackers and budget travelers should spend more time in Siena than Volterra if your budget allows for it. With a larger number of budget-friendly sights, good nightlife, and active things to do, anyone traveling on a budget would have a good time in Siena.


  • How many days in Volterra or Siena? Ideal Length of Stay
    Volterra 1-2 
    Siena 1-2

One day in Volterra or Siena?

Even though Volterra is a small town, it has plenty of activities to choose from. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. Lots of people come for the food. This town offers a variety of activities to choose from. Because of this, one day is usually enough time for a trip here.

The beautiful city of Siena offers food and shopping. Exploring the old town is a popular activity. With all of its activities, you can easily fill one day here. It will give you the chance to have new experiences.

A weekend in Volterra or Siena?

It's hard to know how much time to spend in Volterra. For many, it makes a great getaway for a weekend. Most visitors spend time around the old town while in the area. This would be the perfect place to spend a weekend, as it has just the right amount of activities. The length of your ideal trip is an individual decision.

Siena is a popular place that is full of things to see and experience. If you have a weekend, this city makes for a great vacation. Make sure you visit the old town while you're here. While some people choose to spend more or less time in Siena, a weekend is sufficent for most. Take your pick from the many activities offered here.


Five days in Volterra or Siena?

Volterra is a fun place to experience. Volterra is a small town, so it's a great destination if you're short on time. Lots of people come for the food. Visiting the old town is also a must. Most people find that five days is more than enough time to see everything.

Siena is a popular choice for travelers. Five days is usually plenty of time to spend here with extra days to spare. With this much time, visitors often visit nearby destinations or take day trips. The entire region has so many activities, and you'll want time to do everything.

A week in Volterra or Siena?

Volterra is a small town, so you can explore the area with less time. The old town is one of the main draws for visitors. Take your pick from the many activities offered here. Lots of people come for the food. One week is plenty of time to see everything, even with extra days to spare.

Siena is a great place to explore. Visiting the old town is also a must. One week is more than enough time to enjoy everything. Take some day trips to nearby places to fill the extra days. This city offers something for everyone.


For some great organized tour ideas, see The Best Romantic Tours for Couples in Italy, The Best Walking Tours in Italy, The Best Luxury Tours to Italy, and The Best Budget Tours to Italy.


Which place is cheaper, Siena or Volterra?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Volterra is €101, while the average daily cost in Siena is €133. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each destination. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Volterra and Siena in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Volterra 61
    Siena 69
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Volterra 122
    Siena 138
Compare Hotels in Volterra and Siena

Looking for a hotel in Volterra or Siena? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Volterra


Hotels in Siena


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Volterra Hotel Prices and Siena Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Volterra 4.29
    Siena 20

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Volterra

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Volterra:

  • Private Transfer from San Gimignano to Firenze (FLR) Airport: $251

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Siena

Some specific examples of transportation prices in Siena:

  • Arrival transfer Siena Airport SAY to Siena City by van or car: $150
  • From Florence: Private Siena Day Trip with Transfers: $354
  • Private Departure Transfer: Siena Hotel to Florence Airport: $214
  • Rome Fiumicino Airport: Shared Transfer to/from Siena by Bus: $11
  • Siena - Rome Transfer Tour with Orvieto & Montepulciano: $1,080
  • Transfer Siena-Florence with visit to Chianti and wine tasting: $222
  • Transfer Siena-Pisa with stop in San Gimignano & Lunch: $249

Is it cheaper to fly into Volterra or Siena?

Prices for flights to both Siena and Volterra change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Volterra 36
    Siena 51

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Volterra

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Volterra.

  • Buffet dinner at the farm: $50
  • Dining experience at a local's home in San Gimignano with show cooking: $94
  • Homemade Pasta Cooking Class: $110
  • Volterra - Olive oil tasting with lunch with lunch or dinner: $115
  • Pizza Cooking Class: $115
  • Fresh Pasta Cooking Class at a Tuscan Farmhouse: $115
  • "Hands in dough" Cooking Class with Lunch: $121
  • Tuscan Cooking Class: $127
  • Tuscany: Wine Tasting Lunch or Dinner: $131
  • Cooking class in San Gimignano: $132
  • 5 hour cooking class with traditional food: $133
  • San Gimignano Romantic Dinner in the Vineyards : $138

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Siena

Also, here are some specific examples of food and dining related activities in Siena.

  • Siena food tour and Chianti wine: $71
  • Walking Food Tour with Tastings: $97
  • Small-group Street food tour in Siena: $99
  • Siena Food Tour - Do Eat Better Experience : $101
  • From Siena/Chianti: Dinner & Drinks in the Chianti Vineyards: $104
  • Dinner in the Vineyards: $105
  • Romantic Dinner in the Vineyard at Poggio ai Laghi Winery: $111
  • Pisa Traditional Food Tour: $119
  • Siena countryside: cooking class in a real Tuscan farmhouse: $125
  • Family Cooking Class: Pizza and Tiramisù from Siena: $125
  • Small Group Cooking Class in Chianti Farmhouse: $125
  • Small group Cooking Class in Chianti Farmhouse: $127

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Volterra 11
    Siena 3.75

Tours and Activities in Volterra

Here are a few actual costs in Volterra for available activities, ticket prices, and tours:

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil Experience: $13
  • Volterra by Night 2-Hour Guided Tour: $19
  • Cesani Wine Experience: $33
  • Private Wine, Evo Oils & Balsamic Vinegar Experience with Meal: $61
  • Private Balsamic Vinegar Experience with Wine, Evo Oil & Meal: $61
  • Cocktail Mixing Experience with Snacks: $76
  • Chianti and Castles Tour from San Gimignano Small Group: $94
  • Brunello di Montalcino Wine Experience from San Gimignano: $115
  • San Gimignano, Volterra, St Galgano Abbey small group tour: $152
  • Private Tour in San Gimignano: $152
  • Electric Bike Experience around Colle di Val d’Elsa- private tour: $155
  • Volterra tour + Salt Mine visit by shuttle from Lucca&Pisa: $163

Tours and Activities in Siena

Some specific costs of activities, tours, and entrance tickets for Siena are as follows:

  • First Discovery Walk and Reading Walking Tour: $3.27
  • Digital Guide made with a Local for your Tour: $4.36
  • Siena Scavenger Hunt and Sights Self-Guided Tour: $4.47
  • Siena Walking Tour with Audio and Written Guide by a local: $4.87
  • Siena Scavenger Hunt and Best Landmarks Self-Guided Tour: $5.54
  • Palazzo Pubblico Entry Ticket: $6.54
  • City Highlights Self-Guided Walking Audio Tour: $6.99
  • Highlights Self-Guided Scavenger Hunt and City Tour: $7.09
  • Escape Game and Tour: $7.09
  • Medieval Families Quest Experience: $8.17
  • Siena Cathedral and Piccolomini Library Entry Ticket: $8.73
  • Discover Siena's Timeless Majesty: A Self-Guided Audio Tour: $11

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Volterra 16
    Siena 2.19

Sample the Local Flavors in Volterra

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Volterra:

  • Casa Emma Wine Tasting : $31
  • San Gimignano: Chianti wine tasting : $33
  • Wine tasting in San Gimignano: $33
  • Gourmet Wine Tour San Gimignano Wine Tasting - San Quirico Winery: $36
  • Visit Best Wineries in Tuscany - Wine Tasting & Tour: $43
  • Superior Wine Tasting in San Gimignano: $50
  • Vineyard visit with local appetisers and wine tasting: $53
  • 5 Wine Tastings in San Gimignano: $61
  • Lunch with Wine Tasting: $61
  • "Gourmet" Wine Tasting at Cesani's: $66
  • Wine Tour with Lunch and Wine Tasting: $72
  • San Gimignano: Chianti wine tasting and lunch : $77

Sample the Local Flavors in Siena

Some specific costs for nightlife related activities in Siena:

  • Wine Tasting at the Winery in the Panoramic Terrance: $28
  • Montalcino: Brunello Wine Tasting Experience: $36
  • Wine tasting Experience with Tuscan Sparkling Wines: $38
  • Total Immersion Wine Tour in Chianti: $44
  • Tour and Wine Tasting in a Tuscan Private Castle: $47
  • Brunello di Montalcino Wine Tasting with Tuscan appetizer in ancient residence: $49
  • From Florence: San Gimignano, Siena, and Chianti Wine Tour: $52
  • Lapi&Tour Guided tour of the cellars with wine tasting: $53
  • Tuscany Hiking Tour from Siena Including Wine Tasting: $61
  • Siena Underground Wine tasting in a Medieval Cave: $64
  • Montalcino: Brunello Wine Tasting & Lunch in a Tuscan Castle: $65
  • Tuscan Classics Wine Tasting Class with Aperitivo: $65


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Volterra and Siena, we can see that Siena is more expensive. And not only is Volterra much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Volterra would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Volterra and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Siena would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Siena than you might in Volterra.

If you're trying to decide if either of these two destinations are within your price range, also see Is Volterra Expensive? and Is Siena Expensive?.


Which is Bigger, Volterra or Siena?

Siena has a larger population, and is about 5 times larger than the population of Volterra. When comparing the sizes of Volterra and Siena, keep in mind that a larger population does not always imply the destination has more attractions or better activities. So, always research the type of place that you want to visit along with the activities and attractions that interest you.


When is the best time to visit Volterra or Siena?

Both destinations experience a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. And since both cities are in the northern hemisphere, summer is in July and winter is in January.

Should I visit Volterra or Siena in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Volterra and Siena. The small town charm and the family-friendly experiences are the main draw to Volterra this time of year. Also, many travelers come to Siena for the family-friendly experiences.

Volterra is around the same temperature as Siena in the summer. The daily temperature in Volterra averages around 23°C (74°F) in July, and Siena fluctuates around 23°C (73°F).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Siena this time of the year. In Volterra, it's very sunny this time of the year. Volterra usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Siena during summer. Volterra gets 316 hours of sunny skies, while Siena receives 316 hours of full sun in the summer.

In July, Volterra usually receives less rain than Siena. Volterra gets 23 mm (0.9 in) of rain, while Siena receives 45 mm (1.8 in) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures July
    Volterra 23°C (74°F) 
    Siena 23°C (73°F)

Should I visit Volterra or Siena in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Volterra as well as Siena. Many travelers come to Volterra for the shopping scene, the small town atmosphere, and the natural beauty of the area. Also, many visitors come to Siena in the autumn for the shopping scene and the natural beauty of the area.

In the autumn, Volterra is around the same temperature as Siena. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Volterra in October average around 16°C (61°F), and Siena averages at about 16°C (61°F).

In the autumn, Volterra often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Siena. Volterra gets 177 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Siena receives 177 hours of full sun.

Volterra receives a lot of rain in the autumn. Volterra usually gets more rain in October than Siena. Volterra gets 123 mm (4.8 in) of rain, while Siena receives 87 mm (3.4 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures October
    Volterra 16°C (61°F) 
    Siena 16°C (61°F)

Should I visit Volterra or Siena in the Winter?

Both Siena and Volterra are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities. Many visitors come to Volterra in the winter for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine. Also, most visitors come to Siena for the museums, the shopping scene, and the cuisine during these months.

In January, Volterra is generally around the same temperature as Siena. Daily temperatures in Volterra average around 7°C (45°F), and Siena fluctuates around 7°C (45°F).

Volterra usually receives around the same amount of sunshine as Siena during winter. Volterra gets 105 hours of sunny skies, while Siena receives 105 hours of full sun in the winter.

In January, Volterra usually receives more rain than Siena. Volterra gets 75 mm (3 in) of rain, while Siena receives 64 mm (2.5 in) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures January
    Volterra 7°C (45°F) 
    Siena 7°C (45°F)

Should I visit Volterra or Siena in the Spring?

Both Siena and Volterra during the spring are popular places to visit. Most visitors come to Volterra for the small town charm and the natural beauty during these months. Furthermore, the spring months attract visitors to Siena because of the natural beauty.

Volterra is around the same temperature as Siena in the spring. The daily temperature in Volterra averages around 13°C (55°F) in April, and Siena fluctuates around 12°C (54°F).

In the spring, Volterra often gets around the same amount of sunshine as Siena. Volterra gets 192 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Siena receives 192 hours of full sun.

Volterra usually gets more rain in April than Siena. Volterra gets 79 mm (3.1 in) of rain, while Siena receives 70 mm (2.8 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures April
    Volterra 13°C (55°F) 
    Siena 12°C (54°F)

Typical Weather for Siena and Volterra

Volterra Siena
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 7°C (45°F) 75 mm (3 in) 7°C (45°F) 64 mm (2.5 in)
Feb 8°C (47°F) 71 mm (2.8 in) 7°C (45°F) 67 mm (2.6 in)
Mar 10°C (51°F) 76 mm (3 in) 9°C (48°F) 71 mm (2.8 in)
Apr 13°C (55°F) 79 mm (3.1 in) 12°C (54°F) 70 mm (2.8 in)
May 17°C (62°F) 59 mm (2.3 in) 16°C (61°F) 62 mm (2.4 in)
Jun 21°C (69°F) 44 mm (1.7 in) 20°C (68°F) 56 mm (2.2 in)
Jul 23°C (74°F) 23 mm (0.9 in) 23°C (73°F) 45 mm (1.8 in)
Aug 24°C (74°F) 60 mm (2.4 in) 23°C (73°F) 59 mm (2.3 in)
Sep 21°C (69°F) 89 mm (3.5 in) 20°C (68°F) 78 mm (3.1 in)
Oct 16°C (61°F) 123 mm (4.8 in) 16°C (61°F) 87 mm (3.4 in)
Nov 12°C (53°F) 124 mm (4.9 in) 10°C (50°F) 95 mm (3.7 in)
Dec 7°C (45°F) 85 mm (3.3 in) 7°C (45°F) 69 mm (2.7 in)