Assisi in Umbria, Italy -  Travel Guide and  Assisi tourist information  
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Italy Cities ╗ Assisi  

Assisi

Assisi, in Umbria,is one of Italy's top sights. Assisi  is  the birthplace of St. Francis, the patron saint of Italy, symbol of peace around the world and the Italy's major religious pilgrimage destination. In Assisi you will meet Giotto and Cimabue face to face. Assisi preserves many remains of roman age and many ancient buildings, monuments and obviously churches.

 Sights to see in Assisi:
  • The Basilica of St. Francis: The church was built in 1228 and it is a very imposing building. It consists of 2 overlapped churches. The lower church hosts the sarcophagus of the Saint and preserves many fresco cycles by Simone Martini and Ambrogio Lorenzetti, representing scenes of St. Francis' life and Passion of our Lord . They are rated as one of the most important samples of Italian art. The upper church, in gothic style, has the transept decorated with a fresco cycle of the "Crucifixion" by Cimabue. Notable is the famous fresco cycle of 28 events of St. Francis' life by Giotto. More frescoes on the walls are by artists of the Roman school.
     
  • Piazza del Comune: In the center of the old town  is the typical medieval square, with a sixteenth-century fountain surrounded by 3 stone lions statues. On the southern side of the square there is the "Palazzo dei Priori", seat of the town hall, built in 1337. On the other side is the "palazzo del Capitano del Popolo" characterized by the high "Torre del Popolo". Next to it is the "Tempio di Minerva", an ancient building dating back to the 1st century B.C., which has been converted into a church.
     
  • The Duomo: Imposing building with austere Romanesque frontal. Three richly carved portals and three nice rose windows. In the interior many works of art and an adjacent museum which hosts paintings and church ornaments. Outside the " Cripta" there are preserved various remains of ancient frescoes and a Roman sarcophagus carved in the third century A.D.
     
  • Rocca Maggiore: On a rocky hilltop rises the medieval fortress, built in 1353 by the Cardinal Albornoz. Visitors can enjoy a breathtaking view of Assisi and the surrounding valley.
     
  • The Basilica of Santa Chiara: In gothic style, it was built in 1257. Pink and white elegant fašade with very nice rose window. Interiors with many important works of art.

    Outside the city walls:
     
  • The Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli: It is situated 5 km from Assisi, at the foot of the town. It is one of the most important sanctuaries of Italy and it stands in the place where St. Francis died. Imposing and elegant building, It hosts a wide collection of paintings and works of art by Andrea della Robbia. Under the dome is the " Cappella della Porziuncola" a simple oratory decorated by 3rd century frescoes. On the right side is the famous " Roseto" ( Rose garden) with thornless roses. The ancient refectory hosts the "Museo della Porziuncola" and has a large exhibit of vestments, liturgical objects and works of art.

    Remember that generally, churches and sanctuaries are open to visitors every day from 6.30/7.00 to 12.00 and from 14.00/14.30 until sunset. Exceptions: The Basilica of S. Francesco, which in the period of April - October remains open from dawn until sunset.  Access to the churches is reserved to visitors in decent clothing only.
     
  • Museums in Assisi:
    Porziuncola Museum: Assisi (Perugia) - Basilica di Santa Maria degli Angeli
    Treasure and Collection F. M. Perkins Museum Assisi (Perugia) - Basilica di S. Francesco.
    Municipal Art Gallery Assisi (Perugia) - Palazzo Vallemani, via San Francesco
    Roman Forum and Archaeological Collection Assisi
     
  • Events and Festivals in Assisi:
    Procession of the dead of Christ (Holy week)
    Antique fair and market (Apr - May)
    Calendimaggio (first Thursday of May) : Historic commemoration of medieval and renaissance lifestyle in period costumes. For the occasion, theatral spectacles, concerts, songs, dances, parades, exhibitions of bowmen, crossbowmen and flagwavers. During the feasts two ancient medieval factions clash in a relentless and absorbing competition. All the city shines with the streets decorated by torches, flags, stendards and floral decorations.
    Festival del Voto: (June )
    Festival of St. Rufino ans S. Chiara . (August)
    Festival of St. Francis (Oct 3 - 4 )

     
  • Location

    The town of Assisi is located at the centre of the Italian peninsula in Umbria Region, 27 km southeast of Perugia and 203 km north of Rome. It is easy to reach and it is well linked by highway roads.

    Assisi by car:
    arriving from north: leave the Motorway A1 at the Val di Chiana exit.
    arriving from south: leave the Motorway A1 at the Orte exit.

    Assisi by train
    arriving from north: the line is Florence- Rome, changing in "Terontola" and take the line "Terontola-Perugia-Foligno" ;
    arriving from south: the line is " Rome - Ancona", changing in "Foligno" and take the line "Foligno-Perugia-Terontola".
    The closest railway stations are Perugia and Foligno : Train schedules

    Assisi by air:  International flights to Rome  - Domestic flights to Perugia

    Traffic and parking within the town-walls is allowed for only a few hours per day. The access to the historical center is nevertheless allowed for drop-off and retrieval of luggage at the hotels. Parking in the historical center during traffic opening hours is limited to one hour only.

    It is highly recommended to leave the car outside the town-walls, although there is only one free parking site outside Porta S.Giacomo along Viale Albornoz. The parking site is linked with the center by mini-buses. Still outside the town-center lie the major pay parking-sites such as Porta Nuova (linked to the centre by escalators) and the underground parking site of Piazza Matteotti from where you may easily walk to the center.

  

St. Francis of Assisi Basilica

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