As the capital of landlocked Umbria, Perugia a perfectly preserved, historic town dominating the Tiber Valley from high on a rough hill inhabited ever since prehistoric times.
Today Perugia is a modern and cosmopolitan city proud of its historic traditions and beautiful buildings. You will find layer upon layer of history still in use alongside our hectic modern world. Renaissance palaces have been turned into shops and modern escalators put into medieval remains. Despite a rich heritage and a cosmopolitan atmosphere, in summer you can visit without tourist hordes.
The Arts are very important within the city. The famous painter Pietro Vannucci, was a native of Perugia. He decorated the local Sala del Cambio with a beautiful series of frescoes. Today Perugia hosts a 10 day jazz festival in July and in October the whole town goes chocolate crazy during the nine-day event, Eurochocolate.
The town is great for wandering and exploring. Its narrow and steep lanes are picturesque and full of hidden restaurants, faded frescoes and stunning views. After the earthquake it suffered in 1997, Assisi has been carefully rebuilt and restored. For hundreds of years Assisi has been dominated by the unpretentious figure of St. Francis, whose followers filled the little town with churches, monasteries and shrines.
Assisi’s churches are numerous as are the Roman excavations,
which can be seen in the town’s little museum. As well as archaeological finds the museum gives access to a tunnel running under the modern piazza. Here you walk on the original surface of the Roman Forum. For the best views over the town visit the Rocca Maggiore, a large fortress towering above Assisi and providing a spectacular view over the surrounding hills and valleys.