Travel Tuesday: Living the good life in Umbria, Italy

October 30, 2012

in Italy,Travels,Umbria

umbria landscape

The view from Cantina Goretti winery in Pila, Umbria. Photos by Robert Corkery.

umbria landscape

And this was the view from our table in Spello.

It’s cold, dark and rainy here in Stockholm. And Hurricane Sandy is beating the US. So I am indulging myself with a little bit of Italy escapism for this segment of Travel Tuesday. In particular, I am concentrating on Umbria. This region of Italy, together with Tuscany, is where everyone wants to travel to and live, and I include myself in that bunch – maybe especially on days like this?

As for Umbria, I love the vineyards, the Sagrantino wines, olive groves and olives, the lemon trees and limoncello, the pecorino cheeses and cinghiale sausages. The scenery at times seems so spectacularly perfect that it feels like a movie set. Those small hillside towns are full of  irresistible outdoor cafes, hand-painted ceramics and lots of charm.


We stayed at Villa Aureli, just outside of Perugia.


Hanging out poolside at the Villa Aureli in Castel del Piano with Roger and Nici.

On the trip you see here, we stayed in a villa that is owned by a descendent of Dante and dates back to the 16th century in Castel del Piano, which is just south of Perugia. It was a perfect location for exploring Umbria from, but it was also a wonderful place for just staying at and relaxing as the Villa Aureli had beautiful gardens around it. The nearby towns all seemed to be scenically and strategically situated on top of hills and date back to Roman and Etruscan times.


Hand painted ceramics from Deruta.


The band takes a break in Spoletto.

And in Deruta, a town dating to Neolithic times, painted ceramics were everywhere, being sold and also used as decoration on buildings. Ceramic workshops have existed here since the 15th century. The combination of art, wine, good food and amazing views in this part of the world is nothing short of perfection. I am ready to travel again.


An Assissi streetscape.


A roadside view of Todi.

umbria deli

Spello wine and cheese shop.


A cafe in Orvieto.



1 Debbie Beardsley @ European Travelista October 30, 2012 at 22:57

As the days get cooler and the trees drop their leaves, Umbria looks fantastic! Wine, cheese, olives and limincello, how could you not love all that 🙂

2 Sandra October 30, 2012 at 23:03

Debbie, It would be good to go right now to Umbria, wouldn’t it? Do you have any plans to go any time soon?

3 janerowena October 31, 2012 at 15:10

Wonderful photos – and the top one really made me laugh. I went to Italy years ago with friends, and one, whose father is an artist, was complaining about italian art – not of the vintage variety, she didn’t like the ‘amateurish ‘garish’ pictures to be found on many a trattoria’s walls. As we walked into a bar she said loudly ‘Take that one for example! The colours are far too bright and no sky would ever look like that!’

It was the window.

4 Sandra October 31, 2012 at 20:52

Thanks Jane. I love your story. And I think it’s a true description of Italy’s beauty!

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