It is almost impossible to access the ancient part of Perugia by car (on the top of a cliff), you are best advised to park in Piazza Partigiani and take a series of escalators that run underground, over the ancient and fascinating medieval fortress called Rocca Paolina, which will lead you directly to the old city. Walking through Corso Vannucci, the center of social life with its cafes and fine shops, you arrive in the amazing IV November square where you can appreciate some important sights: the famous circular staircase fountain, symbol of the city; the imposing Gothic style Palazzo dei Priori, which has hosted the National Gallery of Umbria since1878; the 14th-century Cathedral; and the perfectly preserved Etruscan Well, an incredible engineering work built 300 years before the birth of Christ. The town comes alive with regular music festivals (the most famous in July, Umbria Jazz) and a chocolate festival in October! Don’t forget to sample Perugina Baci chocs.
Assisi, the most revered shrine in all of Italy, with the Basilica di San Francesco, second in importance only to St. Peter’s. It will take time to explore all the city’s art, from Giotto and Cimabue’s paintings to the recently restored Rocca Maggiore fortress. The old town is extremely pleasant and its cobbled streets are well worth exploring in a leisurely manner. Nearby Spello is a quiet Umbrian ridge-top town is a delight for those who love to discover the integration of Roman structures into a living town. Deruta is another suggestive and intriguing Umbrian town that may be worth a visit, famous for its ceramics.
- Itinerary: Poggiobello – Perugia– Assisi – Spello
- Total Km: 95 km
- Driving Time: 1h 30min