Umbria hilltown guided tours / Gubbio
Gubbio, Medieval Splendor
Gubbio is less than an hour by car from Assisi and a route “off the beaten track” winds through a stretch of the most stunning landscapes of Umbria, past the crumbling ruins of abandoned 12th c. feudal castle.
Dramatically perched on a hill overlooking the ruins of its 1st A.D. Roman theater, here in Gubbio time seems to have quite literally stopped in the Middle Ages. Gubbio’s “detachment” from today’s world is also a reality: the town is not on a railway line – here, one feels in a world apart. My guided visit of Gubbio starts with a stop at to pay homage to World War II martyrs at a revered local shrine.
I’ll take you through Gubbio’s most stunning (and hidden!) medieval backstreets to the imposing 14th c. Palazzo dei Consoli, said to rival Palazzo Vecchio in Florence in its beauty (I think it surpasses it). Let me synthesize for you here the history of Gubbio from the pre-Roman period, on to the Roman, the medieval and then the Renaissance. Learn here about Gubbio’s passione (and my own!) for la Corsa dei Ceri, every May.
When guests ask me where to find the loveliest of maiolica, a surprise in store: in Gubbio, you can meet a lovely young artisan at work on the gold-incised black bucchero (Etruscan technique). Sabrina is acclaimed as one of Italy’s most talented living ceramicists – and not only in the art of maiolica!
Hungry? You can find not only superb cucina umbra in Gubbio but you can enjoy savoring it either in a vaulted medieval wine cellar or in a garden with rooftop views.
After lunch, a charming backstreet wander will lead us to the funicular for the top of Mt. Ingino and the monastery where St. Ubaldo, patron saint of Gubbio, is buried. “The locals” head there to touch the Ceri in reverence. We’ll do the same.
At the end of a memorable Gubbio day, why not head back to Assisi via another road? More Umbrian landscapes to delight the eye!
Click here to read more about Gubbio’s passione for their Ceri!
Read about – and see! – Gubbio’s May festival here
Click here to read about an April Gubbio festival
Read about World War II Gubbio martyrs
Agenzia Viaggi Stoppini in Assisi handles all technical support for my guided visits (bus transportation, organization of meals, etc)