Discovering ASSISI

Our facility is located in an excellent location, we are close to the city of Assisi and can also be reached on foot in 10-15 minutes with a beautiful walk in close contact with nature through a shortcut that runs along the walls of the city and comes just at first port of Assisi.

There seems must begin our tour of the magnificent and imposing Basilica of San Francesco, built in the XIII century and consists of two parts so different as to be complementary,

The Lower Church and the Church Superiore.Varcate beautiful oak doors carved by Niccolò da Gubbio and enter the Lower Church; continuing down the aisle you can admire the chapel of St. Catherine, built by the famous Cardinal Albornoz, who is buried there. Marvel in the side chapels painted by the likes of John Cosma and Taddeo Gaddi, as well as the time of the nave is a true work of art with frescoes by various artists including Simone Martini, Giotto and his school.

Down the aisle here is the main altar, erected at the tomb of St. Francis, above which dominate four large frescoes in which Giotto has glorified the three fundamental virtues of the Franciscan Rule: Poverty, Chastity and Obedience.

From the lower church you can go down to the crypt where rests the body of the saint.

This basement has been converted entirely leaving intact the limestone rock that contained the sarcophagus of the saint!

Stop now to look at the Upper Church, with its famous Gothic facade linear and refined at the center of which stands a beautiful rose window. Once inside you will be enchanted by the light filtering through the stained-glass windows, in contrast to the lower church in which the light is significantly lower. The top is covered with frescoes that tell the Old and New Testament, whose attribution is still uncertain after the thesis that he wanted to entrust the paternity to Giotto and Cimabue. The lower walls are works by Giotto and his school.

This is the most important and interesting pictorial cycle of Franciscan.

Among the 28 beautiful frescoes of Giotto and narrate the life of St. Francis Basilica in Assisi, there n`è one where you see the saint who appears to his companions on a chariot of fire, the brothers had a vision that one day in Church of San Rufino, while St. Francis was intent to pray.

Leaving the church and go along Via San Francesco, while you enjoy the narrow streets, features stone houses of Assisi and browse for the beautiful souvenir shops, food and wine, you will reach the medieval Piazza del Comune around which stands the Temple of Minerva, dating back to the first century BC, a real gem of ancient art.

Following the footsteps of the Holy, leave the square and go down to the right you find yourself in front of the New Church, built in the ‘600 on the birthplace of St. Francis.

Skirting the church you arrive at the Oratory of St. Francis Piccolino, in which according to legend was born on Santo.

Corso Mazzini path you are in Piazza S. Chiara, overlooked by the Basilica. Inside the Basilica of St. Clare, you can see the remains of the Holy and the beautiful wooden crucifix that, according to legend, spoke to St. Francis.

Do not forget to visit the Cathedral of San Rufino, bishop, martyr and patron saint of Assisi. The interior of the church, century, houses a Roman cistern, the baptismal font in which they were baptized Francis and Clare, and the wonderful crypt of the Basilica Ugoniana that dates back to the twelfth century.

Go to the discovery of the most humble linked to St. Francis, or the Hermitage and the Portiuncula in S. Maria degli Angeli.

An original idea on what to do in Assisi is the tour of the medieval walls and the gate of the ports that are 7, do not forget to take a picture postcard from the Rocca Maggiore!

To enjoy the best views of Assisi from where you get great views of the entire city and part of the valley.

 

Discovering SPELLO

Here is a mini-guide to know what to see in Spello, “Splendidissima Colonia Julia” in Roman times and today one of the most beautiful villages in Italy. On a day.

We begin our visit by its lower part, still surrounded by Roman Walls well preserved, in which there are three gates on the Via Roma, the Porta Urbica and, on the Market Square the grand Consular Port, of the first century. a. Christ. The third gate, called Porta Venere, has two beautiful towers based dodecagonal, the Towers of Propertius.

In our mini-guide on what to see in Spello can not miss the Santa Maria Maggiore with the famous Baglioni Chapel with the tiled floor of Deruta and the frescoes by Pinturicchio that are considered his best production and his self-portrait.

Definitely worth a visit to the Roman House, dating from the first century. C .: already restored in the second century, was brought to light in 1885 thanks to the excavations carried out under the Town Hall. The inscription on the walls of this building suggests that the same was owned by Vespasian Polla (mother of Vespasian): you can still see the atrium with the original flooring mosaic in black and white tiles, the impluvium, decorated with a mosaic wave, the four side rooms to the atrium and the great environment in which it held family gatherings, with the triclinium on the right side and left the peristyle.

Our tour continues with the Church of St. Andrew, built in 1258 and home to a community of Friars Minor founded by Andrea Caccioli, follower of Saint Francis and the church of San Lorenzo with a front really impressive, with loggia of XII century, rose windows of the sixteenth and decorative elements of the VIII.

If you love history and art, a visit to the Museum and the Art Gallery of Spello. The Museum is housed in the Palace of the Canons (XVI sec.), And preserves important works of art between the thirteenth and eighteenth century., Including the Madonna Enthroned with the Child, polychrome wooden sculpture of the thirteenth-sixteenth century. the large triptych of the Master of the Assumption of Amelia, Madonna and Child with Saints by Marcantonio Grecchi, the diptych Cola Petruccioli of 1391 and the processional cross of Paul Vanni 1398, the board of the Crucified Christ of Nicholas and Peter Pupil of Mazzaforte. Besides jewelery, cloths and sacred objects and the urn of San Felice eighteenth century.

Also notable is Villa Costanzi, better known as Villa Fidelia: created on the ruins of a Roman sanctuary, has a structure with terraces and was commissioned by the family Urbani in the sixteenth century. In addition to hosting the annual cultural events and concerts of quality encloses a beautiful park with old trees and a palace where there is an exhibition devoted to contemporary artists such as drums, Guttuso, Mangu and Ligabue and an ‘other dedicated to artists classics such as Titian, Carracci and Fattori.

Do not miss the most representative event of Spello, the Flower Festival of Corpus Domini which is held between May and June. Each year the streets of the medieval village turn into a wonderful, spectacular, huge carpet of flowers that exceeds 1.5 km. The downtown streets are decorated with paintings of sacred art made with flower petals, a unique event for the religious tourism that has transformed Spello in the “capital of the flowers” and also you also want to live “the night of Flowers”, admiring the preparation and the hectic work and spectacular of infioratori addition to assisting the many music shows and visit the exhibitions market.

 

Discovering PERUGIA

Arm yourself with shoes because you walk in Perugia, and is on top of one of the many climbs that will conquer the heart of the city, Piazza IV Novembre, where you can not but be amazed admiring the famous Fontana Maggiore. In our top ten list of what to see in Perugia Fontana deserves the first place. Symbol of the city, was built between 1275 and 1278 by Nicola and Giovanni Pisano on a circular staircase, consisting of two tanks of pink and white stone surmounted by a hollow bronze from which emerge three nymphs that support an amphora. The bowl rests on top of the columns from which rise statues of mythical characters related to the foundation of the city; the fifty tiles that decorate the lower basin represent the agricultural calendar, some biblical, historical and mythological, the two symbols of the city (griffin), the Guelph party (the lion) and Empire (the eagle), the seven liberal arts and philosophy. Have fun in the tiles to find the two scenes from Aesop’s Fables (cranes and wolf and the wolf and lamb).

Piazza IV Novembre is cloaked from the Cathedral of San Lorenzo and the imposing Palazzo dei Priori, home since 1878 the National Gallery of Umbria. Built in 1345, the Cathedral of San Lorenzo is dedicated to one of the patrons of the city. The side of the church that overlooks the square is actually the side panel, decorated only on the underside of a geometric pattern of lozenges of pink and white marble, while the entrance is located in Piazza Danti. In the cloister houses the Cathedral Museum.

The pulpit of the Cathedral of San Bernardino is said, because it was one of the pulpits of the sermons of the Holy Siena. The influence of the Holy city coincided with the drafting of Statuta Bernardiniana of which was endowed Perugia. Or municipal laws moralizing, to prohibit gambling and dance halls.

Do not miss the magnificent Palazzo dei Priori, built in Gothic style between 1293 and 1443, one of the best examples of public building of the communal. It is accessed from Piazza IV Novembre, through a thirteenth-century portal adorned with statues of the griffin and lion. The interior retains environments of great interest as the Sala dei Notari, composed of eight arches with different paintings that tell legends, biblical stories and massime.Agli top floors housed the National Gallery of Umbria, whose rich artistic heritage is arranged in chronological order: the third floor is a compilation of works ranging from the thirteenth to the fifteenth century, on the second floor from the sixteenth to the nineteenth century. Among all, outstanding masterpieces by Duccio di Buoninsegna, Piero della Francesca, Fra Angelico, Pinturicchio and Perugino, teacher of Raphael.

Pietro Vannucci, known as Perugino and Pinturicchio have left them a self-portrait painted in the halls of the Collegio del Cambio, inside Palazzo dei Priori, blending between the bankers depicted.

Piazza IV Novembre part Corso Vannucci, which with its shops and local historians is the center of social life in Perugia.

The famous Bacio Perugina got his success when he changed the name of the original (which was punch!) And began to spread the beautiful packages dedicated to lovers and inspired by the painting “The Kiss” by Francesco Hayez.

You can enjoy the local and shops of Corso Vannucci and arrived eventually venture out to visit the Rocca Paolina, a veritable fortress that was built by Pope Paul III after the sack of Rome. Its construction necessitated the destruction of more than a hundred houses but also of monasteries and churches. It ‘was the symbol of authority and power of the Pope until 1860, the year of the annexation to the Kingdom of Italy.

Near the Fontana Maggiore, in Piazza Danti, do not miss the Etruscan Well, incredible hydraulic work built 300 years before the birth of Christ and perfectly complements that descends underground to 37 meters deep.

 

Discovering GUBBIO

A small guide to discover Gubbio, the city of the “crazy”, without being unprepared.

We begin our tour of Gubbio from the Cathedral, the main church of Gubbio and art treasure.

Revenue inside to admire the works of the greatest artists of the sixteenth century Gubbio and the two organs of the same time kept there.

The scenic and panoramic Piazza Grande is also home to Palazzo dei Consoli, symbol of the city, built in the Gothic style to testify the importance of Gubbio in the Middle Ages. Inside it houses the town museum, the “bell” and seven “Tables of Gubbio,” the most important document in the history of the Italic peoples, dated between the third and second centuries BC

Opposite the cathedral is the Palazzo Ducale, built in the fifteenth century according to the will of Duke Federico da Montefeltro, of which you can admire the studio (a faithful copy of the original exhibited at the Metropolitan Museum in New York) as well as a beautiful courtyard composed a series of arches supported by columns and decorated capitals.

Of note the House of St. Ubaldo, ancient tower house where he lived the patron saint of Gubbio that dates back to a period between the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, as evidenced by some traces of the original wall decorations contained within.

In the House of St. Ubaldo, once every 25 years, takes the resturo of “Candles”, protagonists of the much Corsa dei Ceri

Outside the walls you will find yourself face to face with the Roman Theatre, dating aI century BC and restored in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries that still during the summer season is the stage for classical performances.

Do not let the “town of fools” without making a trip to the park Ranghiasci, green area which climbs along the old walls, starting from one of the old city gates and offering one of the best views of Gubbio.

In Gubbio can BUYING the “driver crazy.” How? Reach Largo Bargello where you will find a small fountain around which you have to turn three times to earn the license of crazy (and citizenship eugubina)!

If you do not suffer from vertigo worth climb to the top of Mount Ingino (908 m asl) with the cable car to admire the Basilica of St. Ubaldo that houses the remains of the saint and the famous candles.

A mandatory visit to one of the ancient blacksmiths shops that you find around the country, where they still work hand incandescent materials beating on the anvil.

 

Discovering NORCIA and CASTELLUCCIO

The birthplace of St. Benedict, the home of the Black Truffle and art norcina will hook you in a unique and unforgettable experience of colors, scents and flavors!

Sort behind Monti Sibillini and considered the center of the most evocative Valnerina, Norcia offers gorgeous scenery of nature! Especially during the time of flowering, when the plateau of Castelluccio shows his natural show better, many visitors come to Norcia to admire the carpet of colors and scents that lies in front of their eyes! Other fragrances will not forget are the gastronomy, from the nose to the butchery!

Joints in the main square, you can visit the Church of St. Benedict, built over the birthplace of the saint. The typical gabled facade with large central rosette with the symbols of the four evangelists above the portal graced by columns and the sculptural group representing the Madonna and Child with two angels at the sides with statues of Saints Benedict and Scholastica. Polychrome marble inlaid, break the whiteness of the facade. Built on the basis of a Latin cross and a single nave, the original church in 1200 is on two floors: the lower the crypt where you can see the remains of the Roman walls, and the top of the main church. Coming out of the main door and turning to the left under a porch in 1500 line up the old “Measurements” (XIV c.), Large stone water jars, used in the markets as a measure for the goods.

Staying in the square you can admire the Town Hall of the thirteenth century Loggia, Staircase and bell tower. Inside are to visit the Hall of the Great Council, the Sala dei Quaranta Sertoriana or conservatives of peace and the Cappella dei Priori, the eighteenth-century structure, which contains the precious reliquary of St. Benedict, one of the last in the Gothic style. Residence fortified seat of apostolic governors, the Castellina, was built by the Pope Julius III to ensure the state of the Church more control over the City of Norcia. Restored XVIII after numerous earthquakes, it became the seat of public offices of the City, only to be destined to the preparation of the Civic and Diocesan Museum.

Of ancient origins also the Cathedral of Santa Maria Silver. Built between 1556-1570 in Renaissance style with large stone arcs and chapels. The interior contains numerous works of art, including the fresco in which are portrayed the Saints Benedict and Scholastica in the center the Madonna and Child, and the Crucifix. The sixteenth-century fresco depicting St. Nicholas of Tolentino with a dove on his shoulder, the Madonna and Child blessing the center and St. Augustine dominates the portal of the Church of St. Augustine, very similar to that of St. Benedict. Another example of Gothic art, the current seat of the auditorium, the public library and the historical archive, is the monumental complex of San Francesco. Among the interior frescoes of the fifteenth and sixteenth centuries is possible to appreciate the magnificent altarpiece of the Coronation of the Virgin painted by Jacopo Siculo (1541).

As well as the valley is surrounded by the Monti Sibillini, also the town of Norcia is INSIDE tHIS collection of the walls completely intact. In the most depressed, plateau, for an extension of about 70 hectares, there are a number of fields, known as the Water Meadows, irrigation systems created by Benedictine monks between the ‘400 and’ 500 which allowed flooding large areas of land in a continuous and controlled for long periods of the year, allowing the collection of a hay plentiful.

After visiting churches and historic buildings, we suggest a relaxing nature walk in the direction of Castelluccio di Norcia, a small village lashed by the wind, with a hilltop in the heart of the Sibillini Mountains. Multiple alternatives offered to tourists adventurous and sports: hiking, horseback riding, hiking, rafting, canoeing, mountain biking .. Recognized as the international summer retreat for the most prestigious sports clubs, the mountainous area of Forca Canapine at a height of 1542 meters, is ideal for downhill skiing and home to the best free flight school in Europe. In early summer, usually between the second half of June and early July, you can see the famous flowering of the Plain, natural spectacle that attracts hundreds of tourists from around the world.

Of typical and genuine products to be tasted in Norcia there is something for everyone! Starting with the delicious dishes cooked with prized black truffle and continuing with goat cheese, spelled, saffron, Castelluccio lentils and mushrooms, especially the mushrooms. In the woods, you can also collect a large amount of berries.

Hence the art of the butcher, a real specialization in the processing of pork. In many norcinerie can sample and buy prosciutto di Norcia IGP and tasty meats.

For seafood lovers suggest you try the trout of the Nera and crayfish. And to finish the beer produced by Benedictine monks!

 

Discovering CASCIA

A few kilometers from Norcia, located in the most mountainous Umbria Cascia born, owes its importance to the shrine erected in the name of Santa Rita, one of the most important spiritual centers of the region and the famous pilgrimage .. but also to its renowned hospitality and good food!

Founded in Roman times, Cascia experienced the greatest splendor in the Middle Ages, first under the domination of worship Foligno, then under the rule of Frederick II of Swabia, later fought, unsuccessfully, from the nearby town of Norcia, Leonessa and Spoleto. Only at the turn of 1500, surrendered to the Papal State under whose rule it remained for less than 30 years, since then always maintained its independence. In speaking of Cascia it is impossible not to mention Santa Rita; the nun, who was beatified in 1900, he lived between 1381 and 1457. Today, Santa, known as a dispenser of grace, is revered around the world and a lot of people go on pilgrimage every year during the celebrations at the Shrine of St Rita dedicated to her.

Main attractions of the city are the Basilica Sanctuary and the Monastery of Santa Rita, real world famous religious centers offering all visitors a significant opportunity for reflection and prayer. Born replacing the previous and rebuilt in 1557, the basilica is a modern building, built in nine years, from 1938 to 1947. On the sides of the portal are two pillars divided into ten panels carved with reliefs that refer to important episodes the life of the saint, with inscriptions in the vernacular, taken from the fifteenth century wooden crate created to accommodate the first burial of St. Rita. In this place still living sisters Rita, the Augustinian nuns cloistered. In the chapel is located inside the sarcophagus where the nuns deposited the body of Rita immediately after his death. Of the thirteenth century the monastery where the saint lived as a cloistered nun in the last forty years of his life.

The main architectural works that we can appreciate visiting the city belong to the medieval period, as the Gothic church of San Francesco, which affects the beauty of the rose and its arched doorway, and that of St. Augustine, to which there are wonderful examples of frescoes of the Umbrian school and Perugia; the church of St. Anthony Abbot, the original of 1400 but restored and modified in the Baroque period, within which presents a series of paintings on the history of the saint. Built in the Lombard period, the collegiate church of Santa Maria is probably the oldest building in the city, though, because of the damage reported in the earthquakes that have characterized the geologic history of these lands, has been significantly modified. Inside can be admired notable works of art as a wooden crucifix of 1400. Finally, Carli Palace, with its interior that is perhaps the most representative example of civil architecture of the city and Palazzo Santi, home of the Museum, where the information is enriched by the suggestions that may offer the archaeological or refined forms of wooden sculpture of the XIV and XV of which the museum has a remarkable testimony.

If you’re passionate about the history of Santa Rita and its sanctuary, head to the mountain village of Roccaporena, the birthplace of the saint, which preserves the memories of his life as a young bride, mother and after the cruel murder of her husband as a widow. You can see his house, now become a chapel, the rock of prayer on which he meditated, the rose garden and the garden of the miracle, where during an icy winter of 1457, a few days before his death, a rose blossomed and matured a fig .

 

Discovering Todi

Known as “the most livable city in the world”, a medieval town of Todi is a unique beauty and elegance that stands on top of a hill dominating the enchanting valley of the Tiber.

Situated a few kilometers from Perugia and Orvieto, the town is limited in three rings of walls (Etruscan, Roman and medieval) that enclose countless treasures. Among the things to do in Todi, one of the most beautiful views is surely to Piazza del Popolo, the heart of the town overlooked by some of the most important buildings of the historic center that contrast with a striking effect, the religious complex.

Here you can see the whole of the City Hall, born from the union of the People’s Palace in which are housed the Lapidary Museum, the Art Gallery and the Roman Etruscan Museum, the thirteenth-century Palazzo del Capitano and Palazzo dei Priori, perhaps the most beautiful of three and was finished in the fourteenth century.

The Cathedral, built in the twelfth century on the ruins of a temple dedicated to the god Apollo, is characterized by a long flight of steps and a beautiful Romanesque façade; climbing the stairs, from the top of the stairs, you can take great pictures of the whole square.

Not far away, about 20 meters from the square is the Church of St. Fortunato, dedicated to the patron saint of the city and built in the thirteenth century, which preserves the crypt the tomb of the humanist poet Jacopone and has a beautiful fresco of Masolino da Panicale ;

The brother of the poet author Laude became monk to 48 years, from a libertine life to a state of total penance, only to be excommunicated and imprisoned for 67 years, for opposing the election of Pope Boniface VIII. Centuries later continues to be a figure discussed and uncomfortable to the point that on his tombstone was deliberately brought forward by ten years, the date of his death, so as to draw a veil over the period of his excommunication.

In our suggestions on what to see in Todi can not miss the Temple of Consolation, executed in the sixteenth century and designed by Bramante that has a structure with a central plan surmounted by a beautiful dome and hosting on its altar a ‘ancient image of the Madonna, the which, according to tradition, was miraculous.

To truly experience the beauty of Todi we suggest a visit to his underground treasures, the cisterns. Built by the Romans, are located just below the Piazza del Popolo and were used to collect rainwater.

Another tip on what to do in Todi: a dip in the Middle Ages! Go through the three medieval villages of Ulpian, New and Porta Fratta and the area of the lower valley of the said Pontigli; within the narrow alleys frequently open the doors to all sixth of the ancient craft shops, belonging, in medieval times, the twenty-three corporations of arts and crafts that dominated the entire economic life of the city; were often the same corporations, in addition to the monastic orders, who commissioned the construction of several small churches and oratories of which are still visible traces.

Situated next to Piazza del Popolo, Piazza Garibaldi offers a breathtaking view of the surrounding countryside and for another beautiful view we suggest you get on its highest point, the bell tower of San Fortunato, from which you can even catch a glimpse of Perugia.

A Todi is the house painted Patrick Ireland (aka Brian O’Doherty) and Barbara Novack, a true work of contemporary art that hides deep symbolic meanings. The key to solve the riddle is the OGHAM, an extinct language for over 1200 years, with which the ancient Irish translated the Roman alphabet in lines. So, those who apparently seem rigors geometric ends in themselves turn out to be letters. And the surprises continue when you discover that behind such a choice, as that of the stage name of Patrick Ireland, there is the Bloody Sunday of 1972, and the will to remember the innocent victims of that bloody Sunday.

Discovering Orvieto

Orvieto 360 °, one of the oldest cities of Italy, owes its origins to the Etruscan civilization: the first settlements date back to the ninth century BC and found inside the caves tufaceericavate in the bedrock upon which today rises the Umbrian town.

Impossible not to start our tour of Orvieto from the beautiful Duomo, a colorful example of Romanesque-Gothic architecture, rich in works of art, which holds within it the Sacred Corporal. Started in 1290, was later continued by Lorenzo Maitani, who was responsible in particular the wonderful facade with its exceptional bas-reliefs; the elegant front, 40 meters wide and 52 m high, is decorated with mosaics and the rose window of Andrea Orcagna. The interior of the cathedral is decorated with important works, including the famous frescoes by Luca Signorelli and the Reliquary of the Corporal.

The frescoes in the Cappella Nuova (conducted from 1499 to 1504 by Luca Signorelli, who portrayed Heaven and Hell, elect and reprobate, scenes with prophets, angels and saints) will surely leave you breathless with their beauty and brightness of their colors.

In the chapel on the opposite side of the church, is the Reliquary of the Corporal, a famous masterpiece of jewelery made in 1337-1338 by the Sienese Ugolino di Vieri, which houses the Corporal who in 1263 became stained with blood when a Bohemian priest, celebrating Mass without faith, broke the consecrated host, from which came out the blood.

In the back of the cathedral are the Palaces of the Popes, austere buildings thirteenth named after Urban IV, Martin IV, Boniface VIII. In the latter, also called Palazzo Soliano, is the Museo dell’Opera del Duomo.

After admiring these wonders you can immerse yourself in the timeless Underground City that was entirely derived from the cavities excavated by the inhabitants over the centuries, full of pits and caves; the most famous is probably the St. Patrick’s Well, near the communal gardens that lie inside the Fortezza Albornoz.

Well, extraordinary work of civil engineering of the sixteenth century, was dug at the behest of Pope Clement VII, who took refuge in Orvieto during the sack of Rome in 1527. Its implementation, desired for reasons of survival in case of siege or natural disasters, was entrusted to Antonio da Sangallo, assisted by Giovanni Battista da Cortona. Its dimensions are impressive: 62 meters deep, has a diameter of 13.5 meters. All around winding two spiral staircases spiral that never meet; the two steps, each consisting of 248 steps, receiving light from 72 windows creating a surreal atmosphere.

 

Other itenerari Recommended …

Our property is situated in an excellent location, we are in the middle of the ‘whole Umbria and equidistant from all the other villages, in addition to those mentioned above can visit:

Spoleto, Trevi and the Clitunno sources, Terni and the Cascade Falls, Lake Trasimeno and the guided tour to the islands.