Umbria: land of quiet spaces and silence

Known as the green hearth of Italy, in winter Umbria is covered by fog, snow and above all silence. We begin our excursions by visiting the places that most speak to us, Saint Francis of Assisi.

After a meal that we can assume will be large, we leave again toward Assisi, this time without passing the walls.
Moving on in the direction of the hermitage of the prisons, we enter the woods or better the forest of the regional park of Subasio mountain, which in this season is colored an incredible red and yellow. The hermitage is a small, suggestive complex of buildings located at the edge of the mountain. Here Saint Francis and his friends "locked themselves up" in prayer in the caves that still surround the hermitage today.

We will go back down to Assisi, and after having covered the whole road to Collestrada, going back up along the banks of the Chiascio river, we reach statale 298 toward Gubbio.
There is no need to describe the sensations we will have from the half an hour of gilded forests, hills and pastures that separate us from the village. Once we get to Gubbio, our first stop will be at the convent of Saint Francis at the lower part of the village, where the Spadalonga received the saint when he fled from his father's house.
We will not miss the opportunity to take in the rest of the town and especially Ranghiasci park and the Palace of the Consuls with the Piazza Grande.
And Gubbio and the city of the wolf? What became of them? According to popular tradition, the wild beast liberated by Saint Francis lived for a long time in peace with the citizenry and at the end of his days was buried just where they found a skeleton (via Savelli della Porta) during the excavations of 1872: the skeleton of a wolf.

If we feel we are not tired or like real Lombards on the way back, Saint Francis is still holding back his most beautiful surprise. Having left Umbria behind us to the north on E 45 or following along smaller roads, we will find signs to the hermitage of the Verna. At the place where Saint Francis was tempted and received the stigmata, there is now a convent that incorporates Franciscan spirituality.

Find your farmhouse in Umbria!

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Published on 03/19/2011


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