Historic Hill Towns
Brigolante Guest Apartments Agritourism in Umbria is a convenient and central holiday home rental from which guests can discover all the surrounding area in Umbria, Tuscany, and the Marches has to offer. For additional links to websites about Umbria, please visit our Links page. If you would like an idea of what Umbria has to offer during a specific period, take a look at our month by month breakdown in the Calendar section.
Assisi is, of course, our favorite Umbrian town. A charming jewel of pink stone and soaring churches, Assisi is the quintessential historic hill town. To visit Assisi, you can use this self guided tour with a map, festivals, restaurant recommendations, and where to find most of the basic services. Alternatively, we recommend Marco Bellanca (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Elizabetta Federici (email@example.com) as tour guides for Assisi and all of Umbria.
Umbria (and beyond)
Assisi may be our favorite, but all of Umbria is rich in lovely hilltop towns and villages to discover…and borders on both Tuscany and the Marches, which offer beauties of their own. We recommend Perugia, Orvieto, Spoleto, and Gubbio in Umbria (along with many other tiny towns to discover…just ask!). Just a short drive away in Tuscany you can visit Florence, Siena, San Gimignano, and Urbino in the Marches.
Almost every town in Umbria has its own historic festival, complete with costumes, games, markets, and, of course, food! Some of our favorites are Calendimaggio in Assisi, La Corsa dei Ceri in Gubbio, Il Mercato delle Gaite in Bevagna and La Giostra della Quintana in Foligno. These festivals are organized for and by the locals (you’ll notice their websites are not in English), so if you want a real Umbrian experience you’ll never forget, try to fit one in to yor visit here! For more up to date information on local festivals and events, see our Facebook and Twitter updates and follow our blog.
The self catering holiday rental apartments at Brigolante Agritourism are located just outside Assisi, Umbria within the Mount Subasio Regional Park and close to numerous places of breathtaking natural beauty.
Nature and the Outdoors
Umbria is home to a number of natural parks which offer lovely areas to walk and picnic or just to take a relaxing scenic drive. We especially love to visit the area around Lake Trasimeno, the Mount Cucco Regional Park and the marvelous Sibilline Mountains National Park just over the border into the Marches. The Marmore Waterfalls and the Gola della Rossa Canyon are also lovely and just a drive away.
Sports and Adventure
Guests of our vacation rentals can enjoy biking, hiking, and walking trails which tempt you to wander off and explore…just ask us for maps and information. For swimming we recommend either Lake Trasimeno or Lake Fiastra in the Sibilline Park. There is also paragliding and horseback-riding right here on Mount Subasio. In the vicinity there are various options for white-water rafting in the Valnerina and even caves to visit…The Frasassi Cave or The Mount Cucco Cave for the more adventurous (and kids older than 11!). If your kids have a limited patience with historical churches and art museums, treat them to a visit to the Activo Park where they can spend the day climbing, tubing, or trying their hand at archery and orienteering.
Umbria is steeped in both natural and artistic beauty, but also has a rich and lively cultural calendar with numerous museums and monuments to visit and arts and music festivals to enjoy.
Museums and Monuments
Umbria is so thickly peppered with beautiful and fascinating museums and monuments that it would be impossible to list them all. For some information and opening hours of the principal museums in Umbria, please check here. Some of my favorite museums and monuments are much more off the beaten track…you may find the Wine Museum in Torgiano interesting, or be more of a fan of modern art, so may try visiting the Burri Collection in Città di Castello. One of my favorite monuments in Umbria is the tiny and unassuming Madonna dei Bagni…well worth a visit. For more suggestions, see our Facebook and Twitter updates and follow our blog…we are always discovering new places.
Arts and Music Festivals
In the summer Umbria comes alive with festivals and concerts…from opera to jazz, cinema to marionettes, rock to classical ballet. Again, keep yourself in the loop by checking on Facebook and Twitter and following our blog where we are constantly adding new information about the local cultural scene. Two of the most important festivals are the Festival dei Due Mondi, a world reknowned art and music festival held in Spoleto every summer and Umbria Jazz, one of the biggest summer jazz festivals in Europe. One of my favorite music festivals is the Sagra Musicale Umbra, which is a celebration of classical and traditional music with concerts in beautiful historic landmarks (many of them free!).
Food and Wine
There is a wonderful traditional local cuisine in Umbria, and there are various ways you discover and enjoy it. Try a cooking class with Jennifer of Life…Italian Style, an American chef who lives and cooks in Umbria. She offers traditional cooking classes, or full days of food and wine tours, tastings, farm tours, cycling outings with gourmet picnics, winery tours with the possibility of horseback riding…pretty much anything that combines wine, food, and the outdoors. Or how about a one day winery tour with Giselle and Mark from Gusto Wine Tours or with sommalier and foodie Alessandra from Discovering Umbria for anything wine or food?
For a real Umbrian dining experience, try one of the sagras (local food festivals) which go on from spring through fall in every town in Umbria. For some information on how to navigate them, read here and for a list of sagre by town you can take a look here.
If you would like to learn all about one of the traditional gastronomic products in Umbria, you can drop in at the Truffle Festival , the Oil Festival , or the Wine Festival. And don’t miss the fabulous Chocolate festival in Perugia!
Otherwise, simply eat at one of the fabulous restaurants here in Umbria. We suggest some here in our restaurant reviews , but check on Facebook and Twitter and follow our blog where we periodically review new restaurants.
Family and Kids
Brigolante self catering holiday apartments are perfect for traveling families. We have two young children ourselves, and have lots of suggestions for activities that can interest the whole family.
For a couple of articles listing hints for kids travelling in Italy, take a look here or here. Also, you may find the sections above helpful…the listings for parks may give you some ideas for a “church-less” day (the Activo Park and the Frasassi Cave are two big hits).
Some of the festivals are delightful for kids, with their pageantry and crossbow tournaments (mine especially love Calendimaggio and the Gaite Fair). For those with a sweet-tooth, head to Eurochocolate or a tour of the Perugina chocolate factory.
Kids love to explore the castles which top many Umbrian hill towns…they can climb all over the Rocca Maggiore here in Assisi. There is a boat which will take you out to the small islands in the middle of Lake Trasimeno, which is always fun (there are also a couple of beaches around the lake, which are good picnic spots), or the lift (known affectionately in our family as the “cage of death”…my kids love it) that takes you to the top of the mountain above Gubbio.
You are on vacation, you know! If shopping is on the agenda, there are local markets which are fun to stop by or you can try your hand at bargain hunting at the local outlet stores where you can find cashmere and ceramics at cut rate prices. Or perhaps you would like to visit an artisan making hand crafted Deruta pottery or linen textiles on an antique loom. Umbria offers all this and more…just ask.
And, of course, after a long day of touring and shopping you may want to unwind at one of the beautiful spas nearby!