UMBRIA’S MOST SPECTACULAR CITIES!
This city can get a bit crowded. People from all over Italy and Europe come to see the birthplace of St. Francis, who was born in 1181. The Basilica of San Francesco is where he was buried. The religious structure is saturated with frescos by famous artists who were extremely influential in the field of painting. Among those are Cimabue, Simione Martini, and Giotto. However, the city itself is incredibly charming and well-worth the visit, even if it doesn’t agree with your own religious views or customs.
Gubbio hosts a festival every year that is definitely worth checking out if your vacation times are flexible. If you can make it here during the Festa dei Ceri, you won’t regret it! If not, there’s still plenty of things that make the city lovely to visit. Taking the cable car up to Mount Ingino is great for a wide view of the whole city and the surrounding panorama. Inside the city itself, you can enjoy the mountainous scenery and the Medieval structures and architecture.
Montefalco is one of 4 main cities in the Spoleto Valley. The historical city center is a blast from the past while the Civic Museum of San Francesco gives a taste of religion, following the life of St. Francis through a series of frescos from the Renaissance period. Additionally to being surrounded by mountains, Montefalco is also known for a fantastic wine, the Sagrantino di Montefalco. You must try it if you’re in town. If you have some free time during your trip, check out the other three cities in the valley, Trevi, Bevagna, and Spello. The last one is mentioned below so keep reading!
Even the name is similar to “nordic.” It’s an odd coincidence given its wildly mountainous environment. It is surrounded by the Sibillini mountain range and the Pian Grande, which is a great place for mountain sports and hiking. Also, this city is a spectacular spot for foodies! Certain cheeses, meats, and the particular truffles are some of the gastronomic gems of this lovely small mountain town.
The city of Orvieto has a very unique history for a variety of reasons. During complicated periods in Rome when the city and structure was more disordered, the Popes would reside here in this splendid town. But even before that, Orvieto was particularly special. The well of St. Patrick is found here and was even altered for defensive use in the occasion of a potential siege taking place. The fantastic cathedral is the main focus of the city and its external walls took about 300 years to complete. You will not be able to resist taking a look while you’re passing by.
This is one of the most lovely cities to visit in the central area of Italy. It is home to a beautiful city center, full of historical Etruscan and Roman statues and artifacts. The Medieval style is present throughout as well, especially in the Palazzo dei Priori, a gothic style palace. You will also find the National Gallery of Umbria in here, a fantastic gallery of art covering centuries of art history. It’s also worth mentioning that this is the capital city of Umbria.
CITTA’ DELLA PIEVE
The city of Pieve is a unique combination of influence from Tuscany, Umbria, and Lazio. It is situated on the border between Tuscany and Umbria. The center of the city has walls outlining the area, enclosing beautiful artistic paintings and markets. The Logge del Perugino is spectacularly painted and is a resort that many come from all over the world to see. Sitting on a hill, it offers views of Lake Trasimeno.
The small town of Spello is one of the four towns in the Spoleto Valley, in addition to the previously mentioned city of Montefalco. The best time to visit this town is during the Corpus Domini. This religious festival is an occasion in which all the citizens of the town, of all ages and genders toss flower petals over the streets. This ceremony is called the “Infiorata.” The following day, the flower petals are removed during part two of the religious ceremony. Additionally, apart from the festival, the city itself is incredibly intimate. The Medieval homes of the valley also spread through Spello, and add unique charm to its narrow streets.
Spoleto also has a wonderful festival worth seeing if you happen to be there during the right time. The “Festival dei Due Mondi” – meaning the festival of two worlds – is recognized in Europe as one of the most important summer festivals. The fortress in town is always equipped with picturesque views. Additionally, this is yet another great Italian town with valuable frescos of the Renaissance period in its main cathedral. There are many important artistic artifacts to explore in this hilltop town.
You may have seen this town featured in some older vintage style movies. Its Medieval architecture, well-preserved in the town’s main piazza is a perfect backdrop for some films and also for your vacation! The town of Todi sits on a pyramid structured hilltop with its Medieval style and intimidating Duomo facing one end of the town.