DAY 1 - BOLOGNA PERUGIA
Meeting with tour leader in Bologna and departure by motor coach to Umbria and Perugia, the region's capital city of art and history, beautifully situated between the Tiber Valley and Lake Trasimeno. Upon 'arrival climb by minimetro to the rocca, the heart of the historic center, enclosed by Etruscan and medieval walls. Guided tour of the city: the Palazzo dei Priori, now home to the Town Hall and the Umbrian National Gallery; the Fontana Maggiore, symbol of the city and admirable example of sculpture, executed by the brothers Nicola and Giovanni Pisano in 1280; the Cathedral of San Lorenzo, dating from the mid-14th century. Visit the NobleCollege of Change, former home of bankers and money changers, a veritable treasure chest. The Salone delle Udienze houses a cycle of frescoes by Pietro Perugino, a masterpiece by the artist at the height of his career in the late 15th century. At the end of the visit time at leisure in the city center. We suggest a stop at one of Perugia's historic pastry shops to enjoy
one of the chocolate specialties or a visit to the Umbrian National Gallery inside the Palazzo dei Priori. For the Oct. 14 and 21 departure: opportunity to visit the Eurochocolate booths in Perugia.
Hotel accommodation. Dinner and overnight stay.
DAY 2: ASSISI
Breakfast at the hotel. In the morning departure for Assisi, listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site because it "holds a collection of masterpieces of human creative genius." Each stone speaks of its
most distinguished citizen, St. Francis, Patron Saint of Italy. The visit, amid art and spirituality, begins at the Basilica of St. Mary of the Angels, which houses the "Portiuncula," the place where St. Francis died: left abandoned for a long time, it was restored by Francis himself upon his return to Assisi in late 1207. Continue to the center where you will admire the Basilica of St. Francis with the Saint's tomb and the splendid frescoes by Giotto and his School. Walking through the alleys, one reaches the Church of St. Clare with the relics of the saint and the wooden crucifix that, according to tradition, spoke to St. Francis. Free lunch. In the afternoon, time at leisure and the possibility of participating in an excursion (optional and at extra charge) to San Damiano and the Hermitage of the Carceri, places of extraordinary beauty, where St. Francis and his friars used to retire in prayer and meditation. Dinner at a farmhouse to enjoy the flavors of Umbrian cuisine. Overnight.
DAY 3: SPELLO - SPOLETO - MARMORE WATERFALL
Breakfast at the hotel. The day is devoted to visiting some of Umbria's most beautiful cities. First visit to Spello, an ancient medieval village on the slopes of Mount Subasio, among the most beautiful in Italy. Visit the Baglioni Chapel inside the Collegiate Church of Santa Maria Maggiore, famous for a cycle of frescoes by Pinturicchio dating from 1500 and Deruta ceramic floors. Continuation to Spoleto. Guided tour of the town: the Roman Theater, the Mauri Palace, the Church of St. Ansanus and the Arch of Drusus. Free lunch. In the afternoon we reach the Marmore Falls, a natural spectacle of incredible beauty, listed by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Praised over the centuries for its beauty, it appears as a roaring column of water spread over three jumps of more than 165 meters in height. Walk along one of the park's trails. In the evening return to the hotel. Dinner and overnight stay.
DAY 4: PERUGIA - GUBBIO - BOLOGNA.
Breakfast at the hotel. Depart in the direction of Gubbio, one of the oldest towns in Umbria, on the slopes of Mount Ingino. Guided tour of the historic center with the Piazza Grande, a veritable terrace overlooking the city, the Palazzo dei Consoli with its unmistakable crenellated profile, the Cathedral and the Renaissance-style Ducal Palace ordered by Federico da Montefeltro. Free lunch. In the afternoon, departure in the direction of Bologna. In the evening return to the starting location.