Arrive in Umbria around noon and transfer to the beautiful city of Todi. Historically a border city between the Italics and the Etruscans, Todi’s roots date back to the 8th century BC. The town continues to stun visitors with more than just its rich history, but also its immaculate beauty. Walk through the sloping bricks of the Piazza del Popolo and the Duomo sits at the far end of the square, the sun glaring off of the pristine white façade, holding a stunning rose window at the center.
The church of San Fortunato is close to crumbled ruins of a medieval fortress on the far crest of the city. The church is decorated with vines for good, and figs for evil, and the balance juxtaposed through the aisles. The Tiber Valley lies at the foot of Todi. Take in the view and smell the soft grass, the fresh bread, and the vines.
Enjoy lunch in rustic style in a farmhouse cellar and taste Colli Martani and Grechetto di Todi. The low yields of the region means concentrated flavor in the harvested grapes, giving a fruity perfume and notes of lime-skin citrus. Take the time to tour the cellar; the damp darkness has helped perfect the storage of wine throughout history, dating back to Todi’s beginnings.
The village of Casigliano is a quick and delightful walk from the farmhouse. Casigliano is a converted medieval castle, now a plush Umbrian resort. With so many perfect days in Umbria, a walk through the grounds will have the sun on your back, a breeze through your hair, and the sweet scent of sunflowers in the air.
Next, leave for Corbara Lake which is surrounded by the decadent green and gold of grass and wheat fields, while the crisp, blue water can cool the hottest summer day. The private and luxurious grounds of the local castle await you with the fluid tastes of Orvieto ready for you to enjoy: Orvieto Classico can be of the sweet or dry variety, but either note will get your taste buds excited; the Lago di Corbara DOC has foresty notes with a little bright acid to keep you salivating for more.
Start the day with an Italian breakfast of Brioche and cappuccino, a light and easy way to begin another romantic day in Umbria. It is a short ride to Orvieto where a tasting of Umbria IGT awaits you, ready to fill your palate with a dry, medium body balance with a lovely cherry nose. Palazzo del Capitano del Popolo, the castle at Orvieto is like none you have seen in Umbria, towering over the city like a beige shadow. Built under the reign of Pope Hadrian IV, it eventually became a university for theology and law students in the area.
The city sits on the bluff and has a beautiful view overlooking the valley. A walk around the old walls of the city bring a sense of perspective to Orvieto’s history and its modernity. Serene gardens now line the walls and the smell of roses mix with the ancient stone. The smooth cobbled streets of the city are full of shops touting pastries, garments, and souvenirs. Traverse the ancient streets of the city and find Orvieto’s Cathedral, hard to miss with its decadent Gothic architecture. Frescos decorate the cathedral’s face, and a rose plated window is in the center as the entire cathedral glistens in the sunlight like a beacon.
Don’t forget to book a tour to the underground city of Orvieto. Full of labyrinthine caves and tunnels beneath the surface of the modern city, you will find a tour through these ancient mysteries. The underground city is more than a collection of tunnels, but it also has small rooms and passageways that were meant to help nobility escape Orvieto during a siege, with exit points a safe distance away from the city.
Montefalco sits atop a large hill looking over the valleys of Umbria like a guard. Take your time wandering through the streets of the city. Montefalco is known for it’s incredible history dating back to the middle-ages and also its collection of gorgeous churches. The churches of San’Agostino, Santa Clara, and Santa Maria Maddalena are filled with as much history and elegance as that of San Francesco. The churches are dotted throughout the city, with refurbished facades, and frescos that have captured the essence of the times, the art, and the artists. The church of San Fortunato houses the sarcophagus of Sant Fortunato, filled with relics now contained inside a glass reliquary behind the altar. The church of San Francesco is the most visited church inside Montefalco and is known for its vibrant frescos of Saint Francis’s life. The inside of the church smells like candles and myrrh. The only sound you hear is your footsteps trotting along the historic floor.
Toward the end of your tour you will visit one of the oldest cellars in Montefalco for a taste of Sagrantino di Montefalco DOCG, a wine with big cherry smoke and deliciously tannic. You will also be provided with tastes of Sagrantino di Montefalco Passito, and Rosso di Montefalco wines that all use the Sagrantino grape, a grape that has inspired passionate praise from those that have settled in Montefalco for ages. Enjoy a light and easy fare for lunch before traveling to Bevagna.
Bevanga is a cozy and intimate town surrounded by medieval walls, castles, and Roman ruins, along with a charming opera house that glows red and gold in the lights of the stage. A walk around Bevagna will not only take you through the charming central piazza but also around Castelbuono and the beautiful Roman mosaics of sea creatures that decorated the Thermae, the bathhouse.
After a light breakfast, travel to Torgiano, a town still guarded by its medieval walls and tower that dates back to the 13th century. The tower, now the symbol of the town, stands alone, hovering over the green of the park that now surrounds it. Walk under or through the tower, climb to the top, if open, to see how much of the countryside you can see. Imagine the imposing armies that have been seen trudging through the countryside, through the Tiber and Chiascio Rivers, on their way to the village of Torgiano.
Enjoy the Museo dell’olivo e dell’olio, the Olive and Oil Museum, housed inside the old olive mill. The 11-room display deals with different aspects of oil and olive trees, including the history of the olive in accordance with Greek mythology. The Museo del vino, the Wine Museum, which offers a historical and cultural context of wine in the Western world, from techniques to celebration, is filled with decorations dedicated to Dionysos/Bacchus. Both of these museums house the incredible history of the town’s wine and olive oil production dating back to the Etruscans.
In the center of the town you can visit the churches of Santa Maria nel Castello and the Church of Madonna dell’Uliveto. Both churches contain priceless paintings from the 16th and 17th centuries. The astonishing Palazzo Graziani-Baglioni is grand and pristine. The palace is decorated with frescoed ceilings depicting a sacrifice to the Goddess Cupra, Hannibal’s defeat of the Romans at Lake Trasimene, along with St. Francis and his followers praying for the victims of war in the valley.
It is a close walk to the quaint cellar where you will taste the Torgiano Ross Riserva DOCG. The wine is dry, soft, full-bodied, with a delicate nose and persistent aromas of blackberries and cherries, with a presence of chocolate, vanilla and coffee. This wine is not to be missed, and in the dim light of the cellar your palate will taste why this wine is romantic, and why Torgiano is special.
After your tasting, visit the small village of Deruta. Most likely built on Roman foundations, Deruta is known for its art and its shopping. Visit the ceramics museum to learn the history of Deruta’s favorite art, most notably the “Bella Donna” plates, clad with portraits of lovely ladies whose names appear on the plate with becoming inscriptions. For a delectable dinner, try Locanda del Bracconiere. Their dish Duetto al Tartufo, a duo of pastas with the shavings of black truffle, is like a playground for your taste buds.
Follow the first footsteps of San Francesco and Saint Frances of Assisi, for a visit to Assisi. The town stretches over the slopes of Monte Subasio and on a clear day you can see across the Umbrian plain to the gates of Perugia. Stemming from Roman origins, the current look of the town, with its streets and buildings arranged up and down the mountain, is contributed to the urban development of the Middle Ages.
The city’s oldest center is made up of eight fortified gates and connection of long walls. At the top of the mountain are two castles, the Major Castle and the Minor Castle. There are also remnants of a Roman amphitheater and the Temple of Minerva. These sights are special to Assisi, surrounded and absorbed into the town’s structure and history. The main attraction that has brought tourists and pilgrims alike is the Basilica of San Francisco d’Assisi. Saint Francis, the saint for whom the current Pope has taken his name, was born in Assisi and the stories of his life are still felt and told throughout the world, especially at the basilica in Assisi. The basilica itself boasts incredible pillars and a gigantic archway that beckons you to enter. The structure itself is a clean white, with a rose window, looking out into the Umbrian plain, with two courtyards, open and airy to two separate entrances of the church. The basilica is as breathtaking on the outside as it is natural and unpretentious on the inside, following in San Francesco’s modesty.
For a lovely treat, wander up the road a bit and try the incredibly smooth olive oil and sweet balsamic of Francesco’s, an exuberant and friendly man, born and raised in Assisi. Today's included lunch will be just outside of Assisi. It is your chance to taste the delicate white wines of the region, along with the deep purple reds, one light and citrusy, the other full and earthy.
If you have the energy, finish the day in Spello, a quaint and quintessential Umbrian town. Spello is full of Roman ruins speckled throughout the town and the countryside nearby, along with the church of Santa Maria Maggiore, most likely built over a temple dedicated to Juno and Vesta. The church has a Romanesque portal and striking bell tower. Walk through stunning Venus’s gate, built in the 1st century and enjoy the ancient feel of the modern town.
Perugia is the capital of Umbria and the great “Guelf strong-hold” sits in the heart of the region. Perugia is accessible from everywhere and anywhere and has five historical quarters all closed in by the original Etruscan walls. The streets that line the city are narrow with long stretches that showcase the antique walls of the city. Take a moment to sit in the Piazza Grande, now called Piazza IV Novembre. It is an opulent square with a circular fountain, the Fontana Maggiore, sitting at the far end close to the pillars and arches of the Palazzo dei Priori, now a government building. The structure commands the corner of the piazza, the artery of Perugia’s medieval past.
The Piazza is an unparalleled architectural complex. The grand architecture of the Basilica of San Domenico is as impressive as the art that decorates it inside, including a wooden choir from the Renaissance. Visit the gardens in the Rocca Paolina, once a stronghold built by Pope Paul III. You can wander through the complexities of the fortress, including the opulent gardens that smell like cedar and rose water.
Today's wine tasting takes place just outside of Perugia with wine that will tickle your tongue pink: full, and flavorful, you will be happy to have people to share the moment with. Enjoy your last night in Umbria with a relaxing dinner at 9cento Restaurant. Taste the tagliatelle con porcini e fiori di zucca, pasta tagliatelle with porcini mushrooms and pumpkin blossoms. Dinner will be a perfect end to a perfect trip.
Before you leave Umbria, a trip to Spoleto is a must. Spoleto is a beautiful and quaint Umbrian town a short distance from Assisi. Spoleto is full of Roman ruins speckled throughout the town and the nearby countryside. The town also has a grand scale castle, the Rocca Albornoziana, anc the Torre dell’Olio, the sole 13th century tower that remains in the city.
Take your time to say a proper goodbye to Umbria, with a caffe or a glass of wine, a nice brioche, and the tasty, romantic memories that, like the towns of Umbria, will only grow stronger. Remember: ci vediamo dopo, which doesn’t mean goodbye, it means “we will see each other soon.”
This 7-day Umbria wine tour gives you more than just a taste of Umbria’s wine, but immerses you in all the romance that the vibrant region has to offer. Set in the center of Italy, Umbria has the diversity of Italy’s regions, with full bodied red wines, delicate white wines, and architecture that predates Rome. Umbria is easy to miss for those that have never been, but unforgettable for those that have.
Each day in Umbria is another chance to fall in love with Italy, with Umbria, with the food, the wine, and the people. The city of Todi boasts a beautiful and immaculate piazza adorned with the pristine white marble of the Duomo. Orvieto can be seen atop a cliff, towering over the green valley below. See why Montefalco is considered “the Balcony of Umbria,” with a panoramic view of the region from every angle. Montefalco has more than just a view but also preserves incredible churches.
Torgiano still maintains its historic symbol of power in the walls that surround the city. Assisi grows higher up the mountain the closer you are, one of the most popular cities to visit, with the bleached white façade of the church of Saint Francis shining over the valley, the home of Saint Francis and some of the regions best wine. Perugia, the capital of Umbria, will have you following Etruscan walls around the city and exploring the empty, colorful streets that take you through history.
The air of Umbria smells of wheat and old stone. The people welcome you into their shops and restaurants with welcoming smiles and exaggerated gesticulations. Umbria quietly boasts its historical past, while maintaining a proud and friendly modernity.
If you're interested in exploring more of Italy, visit the Italy tours and vacations section on Zicasso.
$1920 per person (excluding international flights)
This trip is customizable for your private travel.
The starting price is based on travel during the low season for a minimum of two travelers staying in shared 3-star accommodations. Please inquire for a custom trip quote based on your travel preferences and travel dates.
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