Information about The East of Umbria

Information about Umbria - map of Eastern part Umbria

The East Umbria page contains information about the towns: Assisi (in pdf), Foligno (also as a pdf), Santa Maria degli Angeli, Spello, Valtopina, Nocera Umbra, San Anatolia di Narco, Vallo Nera, Cerreto di Spoleto, Trevi, Campello sul Clitunno, Preci, Norcia, Cascia and Castelluccio.

Go back to the general page for sightseeing in Umbria.

The holiday villas and apartments in the East of Umbria Italy are listed on the right side of this page. Clicking on the picture or name will bring you to the details of that holiday rental.

More information about Assisi can be found in this Assisi pdf, while information about the town of Foligno can be read in this Foligno pdf.

Visit our Villa in Umbria blog for more information about things to do at the East of Umbria: 

Sibillini Mountains National Park
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 Bar in Valnerina

S. MARIA DEGLI ANGELI

santa maria degli angeli in Umbria

Located about 20 km from Perugia (SS 75), Santa Maria degli Angeli is a small industrial centre on the outskirts of Assisi and a shrine for pilgrims, as it is the site of the Porziuncola, the small chapel where St. Francis founded the Franciscan Order in 1209. Pilgrims travel to S. Maria degli Angeli, where St. Francis frequently sojourned and where he died in October 1226, to obtain indulgence.

What to see

Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli. An imposing Renaissance structure that protects and incorporates the ancient rural chapel of Porziuncola. Designed by Perugian architect Galeazzo Alessi in 1569, it also houses the Cappella del Transito, the ancient infirmary cell where St. Francis died. The church has a wide collection of Umbrian paintings from the 16th and 17th centuries, and a rose garden planted with thornless rosebushes tied to a legend from the saint's life.

Events

Festa del Perdono, 2nd August. A religious event attended by pilgrims from all over the world for more than a millennium.


SPELLO

spello with the yearly infiorata

A lovely and atmospheric city perched atop Monte Subasio just 4 km from Fo ligno and 35 km from Perugia, Spello offers a wealth of both artistic and ga stronomic treasures. The historic district situated between the gates erected in the Augustan and medieval periods is not to be missed.

What to see

Church of Santa Maria Maggiore (12th-17th c.), with 17th-century façade. Frescoes by Pinturicchio (1454-1513) in the Cappella Baglioni. Villa Fidelia (16th c.), built on the site where the Roman Temple of Venus, the theatre, and the thermal baths once stood.
Palazzo dei Canonici, which houses the Pinacoteca with a rich collection of works from the 13th-18th centuries.Church of S. Andrea, 13th c., with frescoes of the Foligno school of the 15th c. and a large painting on wood by Pinturicchio. Church of S. Lorenzo, built in 1120 and extensively modified between the 16th and 17th centuries. Houses an exquisite marble tabernacle created by Flaminio Vacca in the late 1500s. Porta Venere and Torri di Properzio from the Augustan age.

What to taste

The pecorino cheese of Monte Subasio, sausages, prosciutto, mountain aspara gus, mushrooms, and the prized whi te truffle. Excellent olive oil. Fine wines made from Merlot, Cabernet, Pinot Nero, Sangiovese, Trebbiano, and Grechetto grapes. Not to miss: Crescia (cheese bread), pasta with walnuts, stracciatella cheese, spelt soup, and wild game.

Events

Infiorata del Corpus Domini, a proces sion of many forms and colours, featuring amazing floral compositions displayed along the streets of the town representing liturgical figures and ornamental motifs. Olive Oil and Bruschetta Festival, held the last weekend in November. A unique parade of olive pickers on tractors decorated with olive branches.


VALTOPINA

valtopina

About 50 km from Perugia (SS 75, SS 3 in the direction of Gubbio) in the valley of the Topino river, lies Valtopina, a small town immersed in the verdant territory of the Monte Subasio Mountain Community. An area rich in historical, artistic, and naturalistic itineraries to explore on foot, horse back, or mountain bike.

What to see

The Roman ruins (in the villages of Foro, Ponterio, Pontecentesimo and Pieve Fanonica). Church of S. Pietro, with a lovely painting from the 17th century. Works by a follower of Caravaggio. Worthy of a visit within the municipal territory are the churches of S. Sisto in Gallano, S. Giovanni in Giove, and S. Biagio in Balciano.

WHAT TO TASTE

Woodland products of extraordinary quality: mushrooms, asparagus, bilberries, wild cardoons, but above all white and black truffles, the basis for numerous tasty dishes produced according to traditional recipes. Not to miss: brustengolo, a cake made using a mixture of corn meal cooked in milk, olive oil, chopped apples, pine nuts and walnuts, and pan caciato, a bread with pecorino cheese and walnuts.

EVENTS

Fair of Handmade Embroidery and Artisan Fabrics, in September. Truffle Fair, the last two weekends of November.


NOCERA UMBRA

Nocera Umbra in Umbria

Fifteen minutes by car from Valtopina (8 km on the SS 3). Perched atop a rocky spur from which it overlooks the Topino river and the Via Flaminia, Nocera Umbra still has clear signs of its past as a defensive stronghold dating from Roman times. Enclosed by sturdy walls in the Middle Ages, it retains interesting historical vestiges and the quality of its traditionally prized spring waters.

What to see

Cathedral: a Romanesque edifice completely rebuilt in 1448, featuring a beautiful majolica floor in the sacristy and a chapel decorated with 17th-century paintings by Giulio Cesare Angeli. The Campanaccio, an imposing 11th-century tower, the only element remaining of the old fortress. Church of S. Francesco, 14th c., now housing the Pinacoteca and Museo Civico, with frescoes by Matteo da Gualdo and a polyptych by Niccolò Alunno. Church of S. Filippo, in neo-Gothic style, designed by the architect Luigi Poletti and built between 1864 and 1868. Church of S. Chiara (13th c.), completely restructured during the 19th century, houses the Natività della Vergine, a 17th-century painting by Carlo Maratta. Municipal Theatre, a splendid example of Art Nouveau architecture.

What to taste

Mountain spelt, chickling peas, and lentils. Red potato gnocchi. Mushrooms and truf fles. Stacciola or carduccia (a wild mountain cardoon), roast or stewed mutton. Biscio (a savoury cake made with wild and garden herbs and ricotta cheese). The traditional sweets such as rocciata (a fruit and nut roll), rocci, and pizza Pasquale. Wines, oil, and lard, a basic ingredient in the local minestrone and a condiment for roast meats.

Events

Palio dei Quartieri, in August. The celebration begins on Wednesday with processions, visits to the taverns, and representations of the traditional trades, and culminates on Sunday with contests, tournaments, and the relay race with the sedan chair called the “Dama Infedele” (Unfaithful Lady). Festa delle acque, in August, celebration of the tradition of the local mineral springs, with food and wine events and musical and theatrical performances. Cavalcata di Satriano, in September, with knights in period costume who ride the route of the last journey of St. Francis between the lands of Nocera Umbra and Assisi.


S. ANATOLIA DI NARCO

Sant Anatolia di Narco in Umbria

About 80 km from Perugia (SS 3 Flaminia, SS 395). Situated on the left slope of the Valnerina (Nera river valley), this town takes its name from Anatolia, daughter of the wealthy Roman Anicia family, whose life was filled with pilgrimages, conversions and miracles up to the year 253 when she was martyred in Rieti, murdered by Audace. The current structure of S. Anatolia di Narco is predominantly medieval, with the village enclosed by 14th-century walls dominated by two 15th-century towers.

The 13th-century castle that constitutes the emblem of the medieval town. Parish church of Santa Anatolia, with a cycle of frescoes from the 14th century. Oratory of Santa Maria delle Grazie, late 16th century, with frescoes of various epochs. Benedictine Abbey of Saints Felice and Mauro, which lies at the foot of the village of Castel San Felice, 1 km from Sant’Anatolia. Built in 1190, the abbey is one of the finest examples of Romanesque architecture in the zone of Spoleto. Of naturalistic interest, Piano delle Melette and the plateau of Gavelli.

What to taste

The prized black truffle in all its combinations with pasta and rice, meat, and freshwater fish. Not to miss: giuncata, the typical cheese of the Valnerina, made from the curd of whole milk and collected in small rush baskets. Traditionally, it is eaten with sugar and cinnamon.

Events

Primavera in Valnerina, gardening and horticulture show with specialised exhibitors from all over Italy.

Festa della Madonna del buon Consiglio or Festa delle Santesse, the last Sunday in May. The ‘Santesse’ are two young women selected by the parish priest who will have the task of looking after the parish for the entire year.

Feast of the Patron Saint S. Anatolia, 9th July.


VALLO DI NERA

vallo di nera a village in Umbria

Located about 5 km from S. Anatolia (SS 209). Enclosure walls with gates and towers of the 12th century. The town maintains the architectural characteristics of the Middle Ages.

What to see

Castle of Vallo (1217). The excellent state of preservation of the wall makes this one of the most interesting towns of the Valnerina. Church of Santa Maria (13th c.). Houses 14th and 15th-century frescoes, including a series depicting stories of Christ and the Virgin Mary painted in 1383 by Cola di Pietro and Francesco di Antonio. Parish church of San Giovanni Battista (13th c.). Situated at the highest point of the hill, only the apse and parts of the side walls remain. Church of Santa Caterina (14th c.). The façade is characterised by a Renaissance portal and a bell gable with two bells aligned vertically.

What to taste

The wealth of woodland products: black truffles, porcini mushrooms, and chestnuts that accompany excellent wild boar dishes.

Events

Feast of the Patron Saint San Sebastiano, 20th January. Escargot Festival, August, in the hamlet of Meggiano.


CERRETO DI SPOLETO

Cerreto di Spoleto in the East of Umbria

Climbing the Valnerina on the SS209 you reach Cerreto di Spoleto at 557 metres elevation, whose name comes from the woods of cerri (Turkey oak) that surround it. Established in the Middle Ages, the town was famous for its herbalists, empirical spice sellers who peddled miraculous unguents and long-life elixirs. Today it is primarily known for black truffle hunting.

What to see

Monastery of S. Giacomo (14th-15thc.). The inner walls are adorned with lovely 15th-century paintings depicting stories of Saints Giovanni and Caterina, as well as images of the Madonna with Child and the Crucifixion. Church of Santa Maria De Libera, from the Renaissance period, with fine frescoes of the Umbria-Marche school in the side chapels. Church and Franciscan monastery of Madonna di Costantinopoli (16th-17th c.), with several altars in stucco and wood and respective paintings from the 17th century. In the immediate vicinity, worthy of a visit: Borgo Cerreto, an authentic defensive fort, the remains of the walls and towers still visible; Sanctuary of the Madonna della Stella, a 17th-century Augustine hermitage near the village of Ruscio.

What to taste

The prized black truffle, to taste with fario trout, indigenous to the Nera river.

Events

Festa della Madonna, on the day of Pentecost. Truffle Market, every Thursday from November through March. Sagra del Ciarlatano, in August. Mushroom Festival, in August, at Borgo Cerreto.


TREVI

Olive trees near Trevi in Umbria

What to see

Church of S. Emiliano (12th c.), which holds the altar of the Sacramento by Rocco da Vicenza (1522) and 16th-century frescoes attributed to Francesco Melanzio.
Church of San Francesco (1200), Gothic, with frescoes of the 14th and 15th centuries.
S.Francesco art collection (Pinacoteca, Museo della Città, archaeological and stonework collections) and Museo della Civiltà dell’Ulivo.
Not to miss: a visit to the palazzi of Trevi, including Casa Petrucci (16th c.), Palazzo Valenti (16th c.), Palazzo della Prepositura Valenti (mid-17th c.).

What to taste

The black celery of Trevi, a basic ingredient in local recipes and known by connoisseurs throughout Italy for its particular flavour. Strangozzi with truffles, caciotta cheese with truffles, seared duck breast, sausages. Not to miss: the superb olives of Trevi, the basis for the excellent DOP olive oil produced here, one of the best in Italy. Also, the local Trebbiano wine with its unmistakable bouquet and limited production.

Events

Black Celery Festival, the third Sunday in October. An occasion to taste and purchase a truly special celery, which has an extremely limited production and is difficult to find outside the zone.
Palio dei Terzieri, in October, which commemorates the tenacity and ardour of the young men of Trevi in rebuilding their city following its destruction in 1214.
Scene di Vita Medievale, end of October, an atmospheric re-enactment of medieval life.


CAMPELLO SUL CLITUNNO

    campello sul clitunno fonti del clitunno in Umbria

About 10 km from Trevi (SS 3 Flaminia) lies the charming medieval town of Campello sul Clitunno.

What to see

Church of Santa Maria della Bianca (16th c.) with a lovely portal by Cione di Taddeo da Lugano and, inside, two works by Spagna: Annunciazione and Presepio (15th-16th c.). The Castle of Campello Alto, situated outside the town (northeast, on a hill), commissioned in the 10th century by Campello Rovero, Baron of Burgundy, now the site of a Barnabite monastery. Important works include a fresco by Spagna, Madonna della Misericordia, and one in Giotto-esque style, Crocefissione e Santi.

What to taste

Black truffles, which can be savoured in numerous local dishes. Not to miss: shaved truffles on crostini and on the traditional handmade pasta.

Events

Medieval Fest, in August, a very popular local event with performances in period costume.
Truffle Festival, also in August, an occasion for tasting the excellent truffles found throughout this territory.


PRECI

Located about 100 km from Perugia (SS 75, SS 3, SS 395, SS 209). Following the Nera river you arrive at Preci, a medieval town overlooking the Valle Castoriana. The town lies within the boundaries of the Monti Sibillini National Park, established in 1993 and considered to be one of the most beautiful parks of central Italy.

What to see

Benedictine Abbey of S. Eutizio, built in three stages from the 10th to the 14th century. Erected on a rocky crag where the medieval foundation lies, it is surmounted by an imposing 17th-century bell tower. Castle of Preci (14th c.), destroyed and rebuilt numerous times. In the 16th century it was the site of an important surgical school.

What to taste

Charcuterie (salame and salamini, fresh and cured sausages, capocollo, mortadella, cured venison, wild boar, and truffled boar trotter), sheep’s milk cheeses produced with artisan methods and often flavoured with black truffles.

Events

Easter, Sacred representation of the Passion of Christ.
Feast of Sant’Eutizio, 23rd May.
Madonna della Pietà, 7th June, patron’s day feast.
Pane, prosciutto e fantasia, a food and wine fair showcasing prosciutto.


NORCIA

norcia near the Monti Sibillini in Umbria

From Preci you reach Norcia via the villages of Campi and Forca d’Acarano (about 20 km). A town of ancient Etruscan origin, Norcia is encircled by medieval walls (13th c.).

What to see

Basilica of S. Benedetto, with a Gothic façade (late 14th c.). Cathedral of S. Maria Argentea, built over the ruins of a pagan temple dedicated to the Goddess Fortuna Argentea and converted to Christian use in the 3rd century.
La Castellina, designed by Vignola, a solid quadrilateral fortress with corner towers, erected by order of Pope Julius III to quell the constant succession of uprisings that took place in the first half of the 16th century.

At the entrance to the city are the Marcite, perennially irrigated fields created by the Benedictines by exploiting springs at constant temperature of the Salicone and Torbidone rivers.

What to taste

The black truffle of Norcia in various combinations with first courses and meat dishes. The prized cured meats processed according to traditional recipes. The cheeses, including pecorino in its infinite varieties: with black truffles, di fossa, di grotta, and the so-called pecorino alla cenere. Not to miss: the lentils of Castelluccio. With a limited production, this legume with its delicate and unmistakable taste is one of the most prized varieties in Italy.

Events

Benedictine Celebrations, in the spring, in honour of St. Benedict, patron saint of Norcia and of Europe. Each year, on the evening of 20th March, a torch dispatched from a European capital is brought to Norcia, greeted by the ambassadors of the European States.
Fair of the prized black truffle of Norcia and typical products of the Valnerina, end of February - first of March.
Easter - Good Friday Procession, “Processione del Cristo Morto” and sacred representations of the Passion in the streets of the town.
Fiorita di Castelluccio di Norcia, wildflower festival, third Sunday in June.
Fiera de senti un po’, 16th August.
I Faoni di Norcia, traditional bonfires in the town quarters, 8th-9th December.


CASCIA

cascia in Umbria

From Norcia, you descend on the SS 396 to the village of Serravalle and then the SS 320 to reach Cascia. A city of pre-Roman origin, it continued to be important during the Roman period, throughout the Middle Ages and up to the epoch of the Papal State, when it was made an important garrison on the border of the Kingdom of Naples. The birthplace of St. Rita, Cascia is one of the main spiritual centres of Umbria.

What to see

Plateau of Chiavano and Villa S. Silvestro, an Italic temple that represents an important testimony to the archaic period.
Museo di Palazzo Santi, which houses important archaeological finds.
Palazzo Carli, which houses the archives and library.
Church of S. Antonio, with scenes of the Passion of Christ and stories of S. Antonio painted by Nicola da Siena. Church of S. Francesco and the collegiate church of S. Maria.

What to taste

Saffron, a typical and important product of Cascia, in all its combinations with pasta and vegetables. Renowned cheese production, including the excellent pecorino to taste fresh or aged, and ricotta, aged in ashes or flavoured with liqueur.

Events

Feast of S. Antonio, 17th January, traditional procession in period costume followed by the auction of lambs.
Rassegna delle Pasquarelle, 22nd January, songs and instruments of popular tradition.
Easter - Good Friday Procession, sacred representation of the death of Christ and procession through the streets of the town.
St. Rita Celebrations, in May. A large torchlight procession in commemoration of the death of St. Rita. At sunset, thousands of oil lamps are lit on the buildings, in the streets, and in the fields along the valley of the Corno River. The following morning, the procession departs from Roccaporena, the birthplace of St. Rita.
Saffron Fair, last weekend in October.
Crèche Exhibition, during the Christmas period, along the streets of the town.


 

CASTELLUCCIO

Castelluccio is central to the Piano Grande, absolutely worth a visit also outside the flowering season!