What's the secret to happiness? A pair of comfortable shoes, good company, and a couple of days off. Ready? Good, let us start our journey of discovery in Umbria!
A weekend won't suffice to get to know all of the region's marvels, but it's enough to get a taste for its values, secrets, and culture that will entice you to return. The itinerary we propose today starts in Amelia, known in ancient times also as Ameria from its founder Ameroes.
This land is rich in taste and tradition, a paradise made of wines, roasts, herbs, and quality craftsmanship. Cooking here is a real state of mind and follows a ‘slow living' philosophy. Knowledge and expertise are applied every day to recreate ancient recipes and dishes.
A few examples? You can try delicious soups made from chickpeas, pumpkin, and peas. Alternatively, you can try roast pigeon alla leccarda, served on grilled bread; or manfricoli, panpepato, and sweet biscuits with must.
Noteworthy is the century-old local olive-tree cultivation. Not by chance is Amelia located along the Strada dell'Olio DOP Umbria (an official itinerary celebrating the best oils produced in Umbria) and it also shouldn't come as a surprise that the area is renowned for its numerous vineyards and wine cellars. If you're passing through here, you must try a glass of Malvasia or Novello.
After savouring the local produce, let us pay a visit to the Mura Ciclopiche, Amelia's great city walls erected between the 6th and the 9th centuries.
We continue our tour towards San Gemini, a town of pre-Roman origin which owes its name to Gemine, a Syrian monk who passed by these lands and stopped to preach here. We recommend a visit to Abbey of San Nicolò, to the church of San Giovanni, to the town walls, and to Carsulae, the remains of an ancient urban centre and its Roman bathhouse.
The following day we head to the Marmore Waterfall, a perfect destination for those seeking out the wilderness. This is one's of Europe's tallest water-sprays, with a total height of about 165 metres, divided into three levels.
After admiring these places which over history have enchanted the likes of Virgil, Cicero, and Byron, we head towards Narni to explore its historic city centre. The town hall (Municipio), the underground chambers beneath San Domenico, the Palazzo Comunale, and the Rocca Albornoz are only some of the monuments you will find along the town's streets. This ideal view of the past is just what you need to end the evening with a bang.