Umbria – In the tracks of St. Francis

Umbria, Italy

Holiday overview

Destination

Italy


Type

Self Guided


Difficulty

Moderate


Month

Jan - Dec


Price

£ 795 pp


Duration

7 nights


A Self Guided Walk Through the Italy of St. Francis. The various landscapes with their beautiful views of the valleys and hills and the towns Assisi, Spello and Spoleto, where you can still taste the medieval atmosphere.

In the heart of beautiful green Umbria lies the medieval town of Assisi, where St. Francis was born. On this walking holiday you will pass through the colourful landscapes and the many monuments and sites which preserve the memory of St Francis and his companions.

This route largely follows two Franciscan walking trails: the ‘Sentiero Franciscano’, or ‘Franciscan Path’, which connects Nocera with Assisi, and the ‘Sentiero della Pace’ (‘Path of Peace’), between Assisi and the town of Gubbio, with its handsome medieval centre.

 

Price:

£795 per person based on two people sharing. Single supplement: £165

A 10 day/ 9 night holiday is also available – (1 extra night Assisi, 1 extra night Vescia, please ask for details of walks from each place). Additional supplement for one person walking alone £69.00

 

Included:

7 nights accommodation in hotels or agriturismo with private bathrooms; breakfast each day; 5 dinners, 6 days walking with route instructions; luggage transportation; local back-up.

 

Not Included:

Travel to and from the holiday, meals not mentioned in the programme, drinks with meals, insurance.

 

Departure Dates:Daily according to accommodation availability from the 1st April until the beginning of November.

Day 1: Arrive in Assisi

You arrive at your hotel in Assisi, situated 900m from the historical centre (it is possible to have two nights in Assisi and we will provide you with a circular walk from Assisi – please ask for details).

 

Day 2: Assisi – Vescia

Today walk first to Spello and then to Vescia, following the slopes of Mount Subasio, passing through olive groves and enjoying astounding views. Spello has Roman origins, as we are reminded by the Porta Venereand Porta Consolare town gates and the remains of a Roman theatre. Don’t forget to admire the colourful fresco’s by Pinturicchio in the church S. Maria Maggiore. Overnight Vescia.Walking time: 5 ½ hours (18 km)

 

Day 3: Vescia – Nocera Umbra

This walk through the valley of the river Topino takes you among villages like Capodacqua and past the ruins of castles and towers. Halfway you can choose to shorten your route by taking the train from the village of Valtopina (except Sundays) to Nocera Scalo, from where you can walk on to Nocera Umbra. In 1226 St. Francis became very ill and returned to Assisi. On the journey he stayed for the night in the Franciscan monastery of Nocera, outside the town gate, where the ‘Giardino delle Acque’ is now found. The second Franciscan monastery has been preserved and is now a small museum. Your overnight stay will be in a hotel in the town centre.Walking time: 5 hours (14,5 km) or 7 hours (20 km)

 

Day 4: Nocera Umbra – Costa di Trex

Today’s route follows the ‘Sentiero Franciscano’, which reminds us of the saint’s last journey in 1226, accompanied by horsemen. Nowadays this last journey is still remembered with the ‘Cavalcata di Satriano’, when horsemen from all over Umbria, dressed in medieval clothes, ride the same trail as the horsemen of 1226. This route passes the remains of the castle Rocca di Postignano, the little chapel of Satriano, where St. Francis had an overnight stay on his last journey, and the medieval bridge, Ponte Marchetto, which crosses a mini-canyon. Your overnight stay will be in an agriturismo near Assisi (5 km).Walking time: 6 hours (19 km)

 

Day 5: Costa di Trex – Valfabbrica

The Franciscan trail takes you back to Assisi. Enter through the Porta Cappuccini and leave through the Porta S. Francesco. Continue along the Franciscan route ‘Sentiero della Pace’, which connects Assisi with Gubbio and reminds us of the journeys of St. Francis between these two towns. This beautiful route, with splendid views of Assisi and marvellous panoramas of the surrounding valleys and mountains, takes you past the village of Pieve S. Niccolo and ends in the town of Valfabbrica, where you will find your hotel in the town centre. Walking time: 5 hours (15 km)

 

Day 6: Valfabbrica – Abbazia Vallingegno

The second stage of the ‘Sentiero della Pace’ leads to the abbey of Vallingegno. This section passes through the valley of the river Chiascio and passes the Benedictine church of Barcaccia, the ruins of the castle and the monastery of Coccorano, the castle of Biscina, the church of Caprignone and the hermitage of S. Pietro in Vigneto. Today’s walk ends at the abbey of Verecundus, known as Vallingegno, where, according to the tradition St. Francis took refuge after he renounced his worldly wealth. You will stay the night in an agriturismo 100 m.from the abbey.Walking time: 7 ½ hours (22 km)

 

Day 7: Vallingegno – Gubbio

The last stage of the ‘Sentiero della Pace’ takes you to Gubbio, a town built on the slopes of Monte Ingino. Gubbio is closely linked with the life of St. Francis, who came here as a beggar. In this town he found shelter thanks to his friend the textile merchant Spadalunga, who not only gave him a place to sleep but the clothes that became the prototype of the Franciscan tunic. The church and monastery of St. Francis is built on the site of Spadalunga’s house. You will stay in a hotel near the church of St. Francis.Walking time: 4 hours (13 km)

 

Day 8: Departure

Gubbio has a bus link with Perugia: a journey of a little more than an hour. From Perugia you can take the train to Assisi or one of the airports for you flight home.