Information about The South of Umbria

Information about Umbria - Soutern part map

The Southern Umbria page contains information about the towns: Spoleto (in a pdf), Terni (pdf), Amelia (pdf), Monteleone di Spoleto, Scheggino, Arrone, Montefranco, Ferentillo, Acquasparta, Avigliano, San Gemini and Narni

Go back to the general page for sightseeing in Umbria.

There are three pdf files with information about Spoleto, Terni and Amelia.

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

Cascata delle Marmore
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 wine tasting in San Gemini
Easy rafting in Umbria

MONTELEONE DI SPOLETO

monteleone di spoleto

From uncertain but remote origins. Monteleone di Spoleto rose on the ruins of the ancient city of Brufa. In the Middle-Ages it had been part of the Dukedom of Spoleto. Contended for a long time by Leonessa and Cascia, it was destroyed and rebuiId by Spoleto, whose events it followed. We don't know its ancient name, we only know that the actual one, was assumed in the 800's a.C. From certain Roman origins is the community of Trivia (ancient Trebis Trebula).


SCHEGGINO

scheggino near Spoleto in Umbria

Scheggino is a small town with less than 1000 habitants situated in the valley of the Nera river. From ancient origins, first called Schiaginum then Schezzino and in the beginning of the XVIIIth century, Scheggino, agricultural centre, rose on a slant around a triangular castle with quarter deck on the vertex, from which the primitive structure is still visible. Scheggino was fenced with a wall in the XIIth century, suffered a memorable siege by Picozzo Brancaleoni in 1522 who was unable to expunge the castle.

What to visit in Scheggino

The S. Nicola Church
The S. Rocco Church
The Poli Palace
The Tower
The Gates
The S. Nicola Church
The S. Felicità Church

Events

Feast of the "Vecchiarella"  January 6
Patron-Saint San Nicolò  December 6


ARRONE

Arrone in the South of Umbria

About 110 km from Perugia (E45, SS 3ter and SS N. 209 Valnerina) and 12 km from Terni. The small town of Arrone stands on a rocky hilltop along the left bank of the Nera river, within the Regional River Park. Picturesque particularly in the part called "La Terra", which retains the original urban structure with medieval walls.

What to see

Church of S. Giovanni Battista (13th c.), with polygonal apse above which the bell tower rises. The church holds numerous 15th-century frescoes from the Umbrian school. Church of Santa Maria Assunta (15th c.), with a fine 15th-century portal and important frescoes by Vincenzo Tamagni and Giovanni da Spoleto. The perimeter niches hold frescoes and terracotta sculptures of the 16th century and a triptych of 1487. Other sites worth a visit in the vicinity of Arrone: Church of S. Nicola, with fine 16th-century frescoes; Sanctuary of the Madonna dello Scoglio, on an imposing cliff affording a spectacular view onto the valley of the Nera river. Museo SottoSopra, in Polino. A museum dedicated to the science, history, and nature of the Umbrian mountains, designed for children but very interesting and engaging for adults as well. An occasion to get to know Polino, the smallest municipality in Umbria, situated at 836 metres elevation in the lovely valley of the Rosciano river. Also a winter destination for enthusiasts of cross-country and downhill skiing.

What to taste

Strengozzi (a long pasta made with flour and water) with truffles, which reach maturation in the period between November and March, the traditional dish of the Christmas festivities.

Events

Feast of S. Giovanni, in June. Mass, procession, and fireworks in honour of the saint.
Teatro e Natura, in the spring. An event-competition organised annually by the Experimental Theatre Centre for school children. The initiative takes place in the Nera river park in territories rich in traditions and evocative landscapes.


MONTEFRANCO

montefranco in Umbria

Ascending along the Nera river, you reach the town of Montefranco, situated at 414 metres elevation overlooking the Nera valley, nestled amidst olive groves and oak woods.

What to see

Church of S. Maria Assunta, of medieval origin. Archaeological site of Monte Moro, which yielded remains of the floors of a building dating to Roman times.

What to taste

Cheeses, mushrooms, woodland berries used for making exquisite jams and liqueurs, and black truffles, the most important product of the Valnerina.

Events

Feast of the Patron Saint S. Bernardino, May. Commemoration of the passage of the saint through these lands.


FERENTILLO

ferentillo in Umbria

After a few more km along the river you reach Ferentillo, a small town in the middle Valnerina situated in a gorge carved in the rock. It is the headquarters of one of the most well-known rock-climbing schools in Europe.

What to see

Church of S. Stefano, with numerous mummies that have given notoriety to the town. The corpses wrapped in carta pecora (parchment) remained partially intact thanks to particular combinations of chemical elements and continuous ventilation. Worth a visit in the vicinity of Ferentillo: the Abbey of S. Pietro in Valle (8th c). Parish church of Santa Maria (13th c.). The façade has three fine 15th-century portals, and the interior has a number of frescoes from the Umbrian and Byzantine schools.

What to taste

Black truffles, for flavouring first and second course dishes. Prized woodland products not to be missed: honey, chestnuts, mushrooms, and berries.

Events

Festa de lu Ciuccittu, in April. An entertaining contest held in the streets of the town to celebrate the arrival of spring.
Le Rocche Raccontano, in August. Festival of legends and folklore.


ACQUASPARTA

Acquasparta in Umbria

Located 70 km from Perugia (E45). Known from Roman times as a hot springs resort, Acquasparta is situated 350 metres above sea level on a hill overlooking the valley of the Naia, a tributary of the Tiber. The town preserves remains of the medieval walls with interesting cylindrical towers.

What to see

Church of Santa Cecilia (12th c.), with the tomb of Prince Federico Cesi who ordered the construction of the Accademia dei Lincei in Acquasparta in 1603. Church of S. Francesco (1294), a typical expression of "poor" Franciscan architecture, which houses a copy of the famous painting by Margheritone di Arezzo at the Uffizi Gallery in Florence, depicting St. Francis of Assisi and the episodes of his life. Church of the Madonna del Giglio (1600), opposite the old gate, where you can admire numerous frescoes. Church of the Sacramento, erected in 1684, which houses a fine mosaic set into the floor.

What to taste

Dolcimpasto, a pork sausage flavoured with honey, raisins, pine nuts, and small cubes of bacon fat, accompanied by a savoury plate of wilted chickory with garlic and chili peppers. Cicotto, cooked pig's trotter with aromatic spices. Not to be missed: the local honey, ricotta, olive oil, and wines.

Events

Re-enactment of the wedding of Federico Cesi, in September, including a procession with participants in elegant period costumes in homage to Federico il Linceo.


AVIGLIANO

Avigliano Umbro

A small town set between the Naia river valley and the Monti Amerini, situated amidst medieval ruins, lovely landscapes, and a rare and spectacular petrified forest.

What to see

Municipal Theatre with Art Nouveau façade. Church of the Santissima Trinità (17th c.). Not to miss: a visit to the Petrified Forest located in the village of Dunarobba, 2.5 km from the walls of Avigliano. One of the most interesting paleontological sites in the world, it preserves petrified trunks more than two million years old. The fossilisation phenomenon that can be observed at this site is different from all other petrified forests, as the trunks here maintain their original consistency and erect position.

What to taste

Rabbit or hare alla cacciatora, faraona alla leccarda (roast guinea fowl). Mushrooms, olive oil, honey, wines, cheeses.

Events

Agosto Aviglianese, a music festival with a wealth of events and initiatives.


SAN GEMINI

san gemini

San Gemini is about 90 km from Perugia (E45 SS 3ter). An ancient Roman settlement and important castle stronghold during the Middle Ages, it is known throughout Italy for the production of mineral water (Sangemini and Fabia) and for its important hot springs.

What to see

The villa near the main square that conserves Roman remains. Church of S. Francesco (circa 1200), with a fresco of the Crucifixion from the 14th century.
Oratorio Priorale di S. Carlo. On the back wall, beneath an aedicola of 1200, you can admire the Madonna fra Angeli, with Saints Caterina d'Alessandria and Lucia in the foreground (15th c.). The Duomo, dedicated to the patron saint S. Gemine. The oldest remains date to the 12th century. The church contains a number of 17th-century paintings: Il Martirio di S. Sebastiano, Madonna con Bambino e Santo Vescovo and S. Matteo Evangelista. Abbey of S. Nicolò (11th c.), which holds a Madonna con Bambino by Ruggero da Todi (1295). Palazzo Pretorio, 13th c., also known as Palazzo del Popolo or Palazzo Vecchio. Next to it rises the majestic Torre Esperia that still contains the "bell of the assemblies". Parco della Fonte Sangemini, outside the town. A green oasis with centuries-old trees, it houses a well-equipped spa centre that uses the prodigious curative waters coming from the Monti Martani. In the immediate vicinity of San Gemini, a must-see is the archaeological zone of Carsulae, with excavations of an ancient Roman city.

What to taste

Faraona alla leccarda (roast guinea fowl), famous throughout the area, which takes its name from the "leccarda", a traditional receptacle placed under the bird as it turns on the spit. To accompany with the excellent local DOC wines.

Events

Giostra dell'Arme, in September-October, evocation of the communal "Statutes" of the 14th century reporting the Knightly Tournaments organised in honour of the patron saint.


NARNI

Narni

From S. Gemini on the SS. 3ter, in the direction of Orte, after about 10 km you reach Narni, a typical Umbrian city with strong medieval connotations. The city overlooks the gorge of the Nera river.

What to see

Cathedral (12th Sec.), in Romanesque style, Gothic in the apse, conserves one of the oldest Umbrian sacred monuments: the Sepulchre of Saints Giovenale and Cassio, with a 7th-century sarcophagus and 9th-century mosaic. Church of S. Francesco (13th c.), built during the saint's sojourn in Narni. Church of S.Agostino (14th c.), which conserves a wealth of art treasures including Gloria di Sant'Agostino by Carlo Federico Benincasa. Palazzo dei Priori (1275), with assembly room and loggia attributed to Gattapone. Palazzo Comunale (1273-created from the union of three medieval residential towers) and Pinacoteca Civica (former Palazzo Vescovile. Soon to open at Palazzo Eroli). In these two sites, you can admire works of particular interest: Incoronazione della Vergine by Ghirlandaio (1456); S. Francesco stimmatizzato (1500) by Spagna, and Annunciazione (1451-1452) by Benozzo Gozzoli.

Also worth a visit: Palazzo Scotti (1500) with frescoes by the Zuccaris, Palazzo Cardoli (15th c.), Palazzo Capocaccia (1545), and the birthplace of the famous condottiere known as Gattamelata.

What to taste

Mushrooms and truffles, used extensively in many local dishes, as well as sausages and meats. Excellent DOC wines of the Colli Amerini produced in the territory of Narni.

Events

Black Festival di Musica Blues, in August-September. A point of reference and meeting for American music: black gospel, rhythm and blues, soul and jazz.
Corsa all'anello, in April-May. Celebrations in honour of the patron saint Giovenale that date back to the first half of the 14th century. Exhibits, performances, and concerts.

narni underground