Umbria Region - Gubbio
We return to Umbria with our stay just outside of Gubbio, in San Martino in Colle. As with Italy, there is more than one town called San Martino in Colle!. One is south of Perugia on State Road 317 (S317) but we are staying in the town located outside of Gubbio.
We have an apartment at a beautiful agriturismo. Located outside of Gubbio, we can relax around the pool as well as tour this section of Umbria. The big festival in Gubbio, the largest in Umbria, takes place on the 15th of May, and we are going to miss that. Oh well, less crowds.
Gubbio has a medieval historic centre. The medieval core has very dark grey stone buildings, narrow streets and Gothic architecture. Many of the houses date back to the 14th and 15th centurie when wealthy merchants lived in the homes. In reading about the architecture, I am going to look carefully to see about the second small door that many of the homes had. The second smaller door, it is said, were called the porta dei morti, and it is through that door that those who died were carried out of the house. Even if it is not true, a great story.
So many cities and towns in Italy have the ZTL zones, Zones of Traffic Limitations. Drive into one of those zones and you will receive a fine, usually many months later when you have returned home. Expensive as car rental companies charge an administrative fee to look up your address and provide it to the authorities, and then the ticket itself and the complexities of paying the fine. In checking Gubbio, it is full of the ZTL zones.
My first throught was I would be able to avoid them as I frequently drive into the towns very early in the morning. But, in checking the city information posted I will not be in luck. The Porta Castello, Via Cavour, Porta Vittoria, Porta Romana etc all start at 6 am!
In Gubbio there is a Roman theatre as well as a number of palaces. Built during the reign of Emperor Augustus and at the time was the second-largest theatre in the Roman Empire.
The Eugubine Tables, from the 3rd century, were discovered in 1444. They are a set of bronze tablets that together make up the largest surviving text in ancient Umbrian.
On top of Mount Ingino is the Basilica of Sant’Ubaldo, built in the 1500s. Articles on the city note the best way to see Basilica is by taking a one-person funicular or Funivia Colle Eletto. It is an open air funicular holding two people standing. It takes around 6 minutes to get to the top of Mount Ingino. On the way up you can see all of Gubbio and its ancient Roman walls.
Since we are close to the boarder of the Marche Region, it is likely we will travel into that region as well.
The area around Gubbio. Some of the noted "most beautiful" towns notes in travel articles include Spello, Orvieto, Castiglione del Lago, Gubbio, Assisi, Todi, Torgiano, Norcia, Arrone and Bevagna. We have been to almost of of these towns, and it always good to return.
We may visit Perugia again.
This photography by photorgrapher CLAUDIO POGGI instantly started my mental planning to travel around the countryside. This is in the area of Sagrantino di Montefalco known for its grapes and wine. This is an hours drive south of Gubbio. Montefalco, has the remains of its walls as well as a number of churches, the 13th century Palazzo Comunale has a mullioned window from the original edifice and a 15th-century portal. Also notable are the gates in the walls, including Porta Sant'Agostino, Porta Camiano and Porta Federico II.
There are public elevators that are open Monday to Sunday, 9:00 to 18:30 - the first elevator goes from via Baldassini to Piazza Grande. Then there is a second elevator that goes from Via XX Settembre to the Cathedral and Palazzo Ducale. The second elevator stops running at 18:20 so you would not be stranded and unable to connect back with the first elevator. The small blue circles with the elevator icon shows the location of the elevators.
No dust is settling on Gubbio, they have an cable car that takes visitors up to visit the Basilica di Sant'Ubaldo. For the latter half of September, when we are there, weeks days it runs from 9:30 am to 1:15 pm, and then 2:30 to 7:30 pm. As the photo from the civic web site shows, this is a real open air experience! The cable car station is located at the very end of Via XX Settembre,
South of Assisi, Foligno is the third-largest city in Umbria. Often overlooked because of the manufacturing industry, itdoes have a rich history. Palazzo Trinci and the Cathedral of San Feliciano are noted on write-ups about the city.
Panicale is a walled Medieval town with a classic small square. A great stop over spot for coffee or a gelato. Said to be one of those places guaranteed to get a “Oh, I like this place! Can we see more of it.”
Built in 1956 by Tomaso Buzzi and apparently still being added to this is a strange collection of fantastical buildings, some look inspired by Salvador Dali. All worth the admission price.
Holds the title of one of the most beautiful villages in Italy. Medieval centre. Good photo opportunities. Weathered terracotta roof tiles, cobbled pathways and flower pots adorning most houses!
A beautiful hilltop town with impressive architecture. There are three distinct three circles of walls, the first Etruscan wall dates back to the 3rd Century with the Roman wall following and the outermost wall being from the Medieval ages. Get lost in the maze-like streets.
North of Perugia, Montone, on the prettiest villages. Located 7 km south east of Bevagna. To get to the ancient town on the hilltop you do have to drive through the modern town located at the bottom of the hill. The streets all lead up to the centre of the town. The centre is the Piazza del Comune or dell Repubblica. It is said it is not like the more tourist towns in the area. Here the streets are quiet. The main attraction in the town is the interior of the Saint Francesco Church (1335-1338). Not just a quiet hillside town. There is also Sagrantino, Passito and Secco wine - try to have some with a meal.
Up on a hill, surrounded by olive trees.Also on the list of the most beautiful villages in Italy!
A UNESCO World Heritage site, this is the most popular town in Umbria as this is where the Basilica of St Francesco is located. This is the birthplace of St. Francis, one of the patron saints of Italy. After the Vatican, this ranks right up there. Rocca Maggiore givea incredible views for miles!
Montefalco is known as an unspoilt gem.
A medieval layout, the town is said to be picture-perfect. The Piazza Silvestri is the main attraction. Home to a whole host of 13th-century buildings and two historic churches, there are quaint, beautiful and narrow streets.
This is the largest lake in Umbria. In the lake are three islands, with ferry service to two of them. It has a magical, shimmering, silvery quality to it that sometimes qualifies the Umbrian reputation for mysticism. Start from the town of San Feliciano on the eastern shore, and take the ferry to the Isola Polvese, a nature reserve. You won’t find too many tourists here, not even at the height of summer. We learned from the locals that it is the best place to go swimming complete with its own beach, so bring your bathing suit. There is also a cafe, restaurant, castle and a myriad of birdlife. This magical island is so small that you can walk around the entire thing in about 45 minutes.