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Italy, Umbria from above
Beautiful Umbria is located in central Italy and is the only region that does not have a border with the sea or another country. It has been more secluded from outside influences and thus retains many Old World Italian traditions. Umbria is a region made up of hills, valleys, and forests and is known as the “green heart of Italy” and for its delicious food, wine, and agricultural tourism. Umbria is also known for its distinctive history, historical towns, art, and culture. Among its most famous towns and sites is Assisi, the hometown of St. Francis. You will have an unforgettable vacation in Umbria no matter what kind of trip you’re looking for!
Umbria is has many small towns with fascinating attractions and various accommodations. The area can be divided into three parts, Perugia, Deruto, and Gubbio. Perugia in the north is the capital and is renowned for its chocolate. Fine crafts and plate ware fans will love Deruto, which is a ceramic center. Gubbio is perfect for a beautiful and romantic medieval getaway. Other notable towns are Castiglione del Lago, Assissi, which is known for its World Heritage Site the Basilica of Saint Francis, and Montefalco. For a trip featuring aspects of the Roman Empire, the southern cities of Narni and Orvieto are great options.
Umbria’s charm lies in the attractions offered by its hillside towns. Some of these date back to Etruscan and Roman times when the Umbri tribe lost their territory to the Etruscans, who later lost to the Romans. Archaeology enthusiasts should visit the Etruscan Arch in Perugia, the Roman amphitheater at Terni and the Temple of Minerva at Assisi. Old paintings and frescos of artists from the 15th-16th century Umbrian art school can be found in walls of tiny churches in Umbria’s towns.
Each city has something to draw in Umbria’s visitors. Assisi, the hometown of St. Francis is known for the Basilica, Perugia is an old medieval town. Strolling around its streets will reveal different attractions such as a Roman aqueduct, and Etruscan wall, fortress ruins, a large medieval fountain, and many others. Not to be missed is a tour of the Perugina chocolate factory, maker of the famous Baci chocolates. At the end of the tour, visitors are offered a special all-you-can-eat treat.
Those who seek natural beauty will not lack for things to see in Umbria. Among its beautiful natural attractions are the Falls of Marmore, Lake Trasimeno, and the mineral springs of Collina de Benessere.
For those interested in food and wine, Umbrian cuisine features the black truffle prominently as an ingredient since it is a specialty of the region. It is often served over a type of thin pasta, tagliolini. Another specialty is pork from the black pigs of Norcia, a town in southeast Umbria. For wine, Montefalco and Orvieto Classico are the most famous red and white wine, respectively.
And for those who need some retail therapy, there are numerous local markets, artisan stores, and outlet stores where you can find beautiful pottery and ceramics, cashmere, and linen textiles.
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