Looking for an active and cultural short trip in Italy, then consider the gorgeous area of Umbria. Find the perfect itinerary for a long weekend in Umbria right here.
After a long winter we decided we needed a break from work and bad weather. What better way to spend a long weekend hiking and indulging in local culture in Umbria Italy. In April the weather there is just perfect to explore Umbria, recharge the batteries and start off spring on the right foot and. Besides hiking, we also enjoyed everything that this region in central Italy has to offer.
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Umbria is a beautiful green region located in central Italy. It’s located west of Tuscany, the most famous Italian province, and is bordered on the east by the Apennines. Umbria is often overlooked by tourists because of other great road trips in Italy. Or other more famous, Italian cities such as the most beautiful spots in Rome, Florence, Cinque Terre, the Amalfi coast, … But Umbria has so much to offer and can certainly compete with other popular Italian regions. Umbria is also known as the green heart of Italy. It has a hilly landscape with historic, picturesque hill towns. In short, Umbria is the perfect destination for active and cultural holidays.
How to get to Umbria Italy
From Belgium you can perfectly travel to Umbria by car, but for a short trip such as a weekend getaway, I advise you to book a flight. We flew with Ryan air from Charleroi airport to Perugia airport. Here you can choose to rent a car and explore the surrounding landscape or to use public transport. We chose the second option because of our hiking plans. Public transport consists of a reliable network of buses and trains. It’s best to take a look at the timetables when planning your trip.
The best time to travel to Umbria Italy
Umbria has a mild Mediterranean climate with dry, sunny summers and cold, wet winters. The best time to travel to Umbria is estimated from May to September. Nevertheless, I already found it very pleasant and sunny in April, but of course this is not a guarantee that you can’t have rain.
A long weekend in Umbria Italy
Day 1: Assisi – Spello
The first day we arrived early in the morning in Perugia. Right away we took the bus to Assisi.
This medieval village built on a hill is a known pilgrimage site. The main tourist attraction is the beautiful Basilica of Saint Francis, where you also have an amazing view over the wonderful Umbrian landscape.
But the historical centre of Assisi has so much more to offer. It’s a lovely picturesque village where you can get lost in the little streets and alleys, shop for souvenirs or local products and taste the real Umbrian cuisine. We had lunch in la laterna, a cozy restaurant in a little alley between flowers.
Do you want to explore Assisi in a unique an origal way, be sure to check out the tours of Getyourguide below.
Hiking from Assisi to Spello
After lunch we decided to hike from Assisi to Spello, our next stop where we booked a bed and breakfast. In the tourist info centre of Assisi you can ask for a map. If you are planning to do this trail, definitely make sure you pack everything you need for a day hike.
You can choose an easy short route through the vineyards or a long, hard route on top of the hills. Off course we were a bit superfluous and took the long hard route. But it was totally worth the effort. After a steep and difficult climb we reached the top and had incredible views over Umbria. The perfect spot to take some stunning pictures. And if you really want to stand out on social media, check out these amazing hiking quotes to go with your photos. 😉
The trail is well indicated. But at some point we wanted to take a shortcut by following the map and off course we got lost. So in the end we even hiked more and longer than the normal route. If you are interested in hiking this trail, wear good hiking shoes! The way back down to Spello is very steep and rocky.
Day 2: Spello & surroundings
A morning in Spello
We stayed in B&B Le Rose just outside Spello. Here you can enjoy the real Umbrian countryside. When you open up a window you can see a magnificent landscape of fields, flowers and hills. You even got a great view of the medieval mountain village Spello.
In B&B Le Rose you can also reserve bikes for free. It’s a 1O minute ride to the centre of Spello.If you want to stay closer to the centre of Spello I can recommend Albergo Il Cacciatore, Bed & Breakfast Villamena or La Bastiglia.
Entering Spello is like going back in time. It ‘s one of best-kept medieval towns in Umbria. Go early and enjoy the waking up of the city and the morning rituals of the locals.
Spello is not only known as a beautiful historical town, but also for its flowers. Locals decorate their facades, front stairs and balconies with bright, colorful and scented flowers and plants, a feast for the senses. Wander off in the narrow streets covered with gorgeous ceramic tiles and explore the medieval architecture, viewpoints with amazing sights and local shops. Another great advantage is that Spello is one of the cheapest places to visit in Italy.
Take enough espresso breaks and when the time is right enjoy a real aperol spritz. This is my absolute favorite Italian beverage. Together with limoncello and amaretto 😉
Exploring the countryside by bike
After spending a long morning in Spello. We decided to take the bike for a spin through the Umbrian countryside. The weather was perfect and the landscape was gorgeous. We didn’t have a route planned out, so we just went on our gut feeling. We didn’t get lost this time.
In the evening we had a romantic dinner at the balcony of restaurant Porta Venere at Spello. The food and wine were delicious, but the view was just mesmerizing. We had a front row seat on one of the best sunsets I ever saw.
Day 3: Perugia
The last stop on our weekend in Umbria was Perugia. We traveled by train from Spello to Perugia. Perugia is a small historical city situated on top of a hill. You can easy reach the city centre with the mini metro. The city itself is bigger than the villages Assisi and Spello, but doable to visit in one day.
Once you arrive on the top you will be surprised by the vibrant city life. In the centre you’ll find the main tourist attractions such as the beautiful Fontana Maggiori. It’s also a great place to do some shopping or just relax on a terrace with a drink watching the people come by. If you are into the dark Middle Ages don’t forget to visit Rocca Paolina. It’s an impressive underground fortress.
I advice you to explore the other sights and viewpoints of the city by foot, in your own pace. You can ask for a city map in the tourist information office. This way you’ll discover beautiful and less touristy places.
Would you like to know more about the city, then I advise you to book a private guided tour with Getyourguide.
I really liked crossing the medieval aqueduct and strolling around in that more quite part of the city. Close to Tempio di Sant’ Angelo we stumbled on a little local store ‘Il tempio’ with specialties of Umbria. It looked like a medieval inn. The friendly owner offered us to taste the food and wine. He made some bruschetta with different toppings and it was so delicious! When we left, we found this amazing community garden covered with bleu wisteria. It’s looked like heaven on earth.
How did we experience our weekend in Umbria?
The next day we had to leave early to go home again. Too bad! I really loved spending a long weekend in Umbria and I wish I could have enjoyed it a bit longer. But in three days we have seen a lot, did different activities, enjoyed the Umbrian specialties and it didn’t feel rushed at all.
Do you prefer active or cultural vacations? Or is a combo like this just what you are looking for? Let me know in the comments.
Thanks for reading.
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