Assisi ok


In Umbria green is the background of each shot. The different shades of colour tell about the different souls of the soil, from the silver green of olive trees of Umbria valley to the darker one of holm oaks that cover the slopes of Arnerino-Narnese to the dull one, similar to tobacco, of the Tiberina valley and finally meet the whole chromatic range of the Martani Mountains. And green is synonymous with parks: there are six of them and around 25% is in the National Park of Sibillini Mountains.

There are plenty of scenarios for sports activity and also a number of spelunking routes featured by carsic underground phenomena and labyrinths made of galleries and wells that open in the belly of Cucco Mountain. A charming “underground Umbria” to be discovered from an unusual Perugia at the foot of San Lorenzo cathedral and then reach the hypogean structures of S. Domenico in Narni while the opencast WWF oasis of Aviano stands out, one of the best areas to go birdwatching.
Perugia is wonderful; its Etruscan walls keep a monumental site where Piazza IV November with its Maggiore fountain and the palace of Priors, dating back to the XIIIth century, became the symbol of the medieval town and plays an asymmetric game with the alternated volumes of the mountain. For a bit of “sweetness” you can visit the Perugina historical museum where the famous chocolate is the protagonist. The reflections from the Trasimeno lake that inspired many painters form the Renaissance period with its light effects, first of all the Perugino.

And art again in Città di Castello, in the Church of San Francesco where a young Raphael painted the “Marriage of the Virgin”– the original  one is in the Brera Picture Gallery of Milan–, followed by Spello, Foligno, Trevi, and Montefalco: extraordinary examples of roman, medieval and renaissance  architecture that match with rural areas made of old farms in the countryside. Besides nature, art and history, Umbria is mystic too and it’s full of hermitages, abbeys and saints, St. Francis is the first and he’s the key to the understanding of the town of Assisi, a medieval town where the monuments dating back to the period of St. Francis are entered as key points. A “sumptuous religious feeling”, where S. Francesco cathedral stands out. You can’t miss Gubbio – a town that keeps its medieval features – and Spoleto: a cosmopolitan town that each year in Summer becomes the stage for the famous Festival of the Two Worlds (Festival dei Due Mondi). Norcia deserves a visit, it was the ancient seat of Bishops and today is the gastronomic capital of famous pork, wild boar and deer  meat and of the delicious black truffle. Orvieto is a natural stage; the blond tuff riff goes up and then falls down on the green valley of Paglia and holds up the town – where the cathedral, a gothic masterpiece stands out – while Todi represents a piece of Middle Ages with its historical Piazza del Popolo (the peoples’ square) in the core of the town.

Luciana Francesca Rebonato

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