What to See in Assisi
Basilica of Saint Francis
Located in Assisi, the Basilica of St. Francis is the place that has been preserving and guarding the mortal remains of the seraphic saint since 1230. Wanted by Pope Gregory IX as specialis ecclesia, it was awarded by the same Pontiff the title of Caput et Mater of the Order of Friars Minor and at the same time entrusted in perpetuity to the same friars. It is part of the non-extraterritorial properties of the Holy See, and therefore it does not enjoy diplomatic immunity.
Temple of Minerva
The so-called Temple of Minerva, of Augustan art, can be found in Piazza del Comune, Assisi (Asisium). Erected in 30 BC, it was probably dedicated to Hercules.
Later transformed into the church of Santa Maria sopra Minerva (16th century), a bell tower called “Torre del Popolo” was added and today it is among the best preserved Roman temples.
The first historical record on the fortified structure dates back to 1173-1174, when Cristiano, the archbishop of Mainz who occupied Assisi on behalf of Frederick Barbarossa, resided there. Later, in 1198, it was destroyed by a popular uprising. Imposing and austere, the Rocca Maggiore overlooks the historical centre, the narrow gorge crossed by the Tescio River and a large part of the Umbrian Valley extending from Perugia to Spoleto: visiting the fortress, therefore, will give you the opportunity to see a well-preserved and important example of military architecture as well as a chance to enjoy one of the most evocative views of Umbria.
Way of the Water Assisi-Rome
An easy “Way”, which can be traveled by mountain bike, gravel bike, or with a sturdy hybrid bike, but also on foot and for long stretches even on horseback, with a very low altitude difference and which connects two fantastic cities like Assisi and Rome.
A “Via” of 250 km in length and 2,400 meters of elevation gain, of which 200 km on cycle paths already completed and on rural roads and 50 km on asphalted roads. A “Way” that runs along the rivers and the Umbrian and Lazio countryside and which connects the Spoletana Valley, the Valnerina and the Tiber Valley in a unique itinerary between the two poles of Christianity in Italy.
Eremo delle Carceri
Ancient Franciscan place on Mount Subasio, 4 km from Assisi and 800 meters above sea level, in the heart of a wood of centuries-old holm oaks – it is one of the Franciscan sanctuaries guarded by the Friars Minor of the Seraphic Province of St. Francis of Assisi. The word Prison does not mean “prison”: it comes from the Latin “carcer”, which means a secluded, solitary place, therefore suitable for a life of prayer. Francis came here, his companions and, after them, the friars for limited periods of prayer.
Wood of San Francesco
An intact piece of Umbrian landscape, a place of harmony and silence at the foot of the grandiose Basilica of San Francesco in Assisi: a path that also becomes an interior journey and which inspired Michelangelo Pistoletto in the creation of a land art work.
Through a door in the wall surrounding the square in front of the Upper Basilica of Assisi, take a narrow path that leads to a wide valley floor at the foot of the city center. Not just any excursion but a continuous and placid discovery, a new form of pilgrimage in history, in the sacred and in 64 hectares of nature.
Waterfalls of Madonna dei Tre Fossi
Not far from Assisi, between the forest and the isolated mountain roads, the Tescio river flows.
Following its route you can discover its many wonders of water.
A natural path winds around the river bed, rich in small waterfalls and clayey soil, finally ending in a small natural pool immersed in the silent flora of Assisi Ideal for those who love hiking in nature.
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