To many travellers, Umbria is at first defined in relation to
other, more familiar neighbouring parts of Italy. Tuscany, a region
twice as large, lies on its northwest border. Mighty Rome is due
south, fed by the great Tiber River whose headwaters have their
source in Umbria's rocky peaks.
Those who justifiably love this landlocked region in the very
heart of Italy remain quite contented for it to play second fiddle.
That merely leaves Umbria all the more unspoiled and uncrowded, a
treasure trove awaiting discovery only by truly discerning souls.
And, oh, what treasures! Ancient castles and venerable monasteries
rise from green hillsides populated with the most enchanting little
towns. Close by Lago Trasimeno, the nation's largest lake, the city
of Perugia showcases Etruscan and Roman ruins, a
red-and-white-marble Gothic cathedral, and elegant Renaissance
buildings. You can visit the charming village of Assisi, both the
birthplace and the final resting place of Saint Francis. Or you can
ramble through woodlands so dense they seem enchanted, along
sparkling streams, or through fields and vineyards every bit as
beautiful and sun-kissed as Tuscany's far more heralded (and far
more tourist-trodden) landscape.
Of course, such rural pleasures promise a cuisine of rare
bounty. You'll discover some of Italy's finest restaurants in
Umbria, featuring a down-to-earth yet refined cuisine famed for its
fresh and cured pork, robust pastas, freshwater fish, and, most of
all, highly prized black truffles that lend their seductive perfume
to many dishes. Umbrian wines have won renown well beyond the
region's borders, including refreshing white Orvieto and the fine
red Torgiano Rosso, along with versions of more widely known
non-Italian varietals as Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Pinot
Indeed, it would take many days to savour all the rare
experiences that Umbria so modestly offers. But just such rewards
do await those souls who are wise enough to follow the less beaten
path to Italy's heartland.
Districts (Provinces) & Towns of Umbria Region
Assisi | Gubbio | Orvieto | Perugia (Province) | Terni
(Province) | Todi