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Contemplating Perugia/Umbria Instead of Rome

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May 25th, 2014, 02:21 PM
  #1
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Contemplating Perugia/Umbria Instead of Rome

We are flying into Rome from London on 25 October (a Saturday) this year. We arrive in the early afternoon and that is pretty much set in stone.

Originally planned to stay in Rome four nights and then train to Venice for another three.

Now wondering if Perugia/Umbria might be more interesting. Have been to Rome several times but never to Umbria and surrounds.

Assume a car would be needed and if so would almost have to rent one at the Rome airport and drive since perhaps the car rental offices in Perugia might be closed by the time we arrived (by rail).

I'd prefer to drop the car there and train on to Venice after the four nights despite the possible drop charge. The potential Perugia accommodation is outside of town so a car seems ideal and I am assuming a car really would be required to see any other nearby towns/sights.

We like Rome but want to do "something/somewhere different."

Suggestions appreciated and thanks.
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May 25th, 2014, 02:44 PM
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We enjoyed Spello in Umbria as our base. Spoleto, Bevagna, Montefalco, Assisi and Perugia are all within a 30 minute drive.

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May 25th, 2014, 02:45 PM
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Thanks for that recommendation.
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May 25th, 2014, 03:18 PM
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You might take the train to Orvieto, have a look around, and pick up the car there (could make a quick trip to Bagnoreggio, too).

I've been to Umbria a few times, most recently once for 3 weeks and once for 6 and loved all of it. It reminds me of what Tuscany was like back in the 70s and early 80s.

You'll definitely want/need a car. The main cities are great, but the really out-of-the-way villages should not be missed
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May 25th, 2014, 03:23 PM
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Thanks, St. Cirq, appreciate the insight.
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May 25th, 2014, 03:34 PM
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Todi was a great day trip from Perugia.
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May 25th, 2014, 03:36 PM
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Your idea is spot on. You do need a car, but your choice of towns to relish will far exceed your available time. It will be fantastic. It could be a bit handier staying in Bevagna or Montefalco though. Those towns are more central, so that daytrips to Perugia, Spoleto, even Norcia and many more towns are easier to circle back to.
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May 25th, 2014, 03:39 PM
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Do go to Orvieto. It has a beautiful cathedral. It is also our favorite place to rent a car, very easy to rent it there. Spend a night there if you can. We really enjoy the passeggiata in Orvieto.
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May 25th, 2014, 03:40 PM
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P.S. - we rented at FCO and then drove straight to Umbria - - it's really not that long a drive, and you barrel straight through, plus or minus any Rome ring-road traffic. Stayed at Susan's Casa Turrita just south of Montefalco (she is from Pennsylvania; came to Perugia for a language course, and never left Italy). Piccies here: https://www.flickr.com/photos/dougla...7632254170980/
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May 25th, 2014, 03:41 PM
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Bagnereggio is an interesting side trip, but try to go there during the week rather than the weekend.
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May 25th, 2014, 03:45 PM
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Try to get to Gubbio and ride the "Bucket Of Bolts," but make sure your life insurance is paid in full.

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May 25th, 2014, 04:54 PM
  #12
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Yes to a car & a big yes to Umbria. Roman ruins, great wines, pottery, hilltop towns in every direction - each with their own Duomos & piazzas . . . and a lighter tourist burden than its northern neighbor Tuscany. We based in Todi & loved it. We even day-tripped to Montalcino for lunch at Banfi.

Ian
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May 25th, 2014, 05:00 PM
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October is the beginning of the Umbrian white truffle season. That could be fun.

The food in Umbria is wonderful. We liked:

La Cantina, Porto Venere and Buchetto in Spello
L'Alchemista in Montefalco
La Palomba in Orvieto
Antica Hosteria de la Valle in Todi
Trattoria degli Umbri in Assisi
Osteria del Podesta and Redibis in Bevagna
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May 25th, 2014, 05:58 PM
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Another vote for Umbria.
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May 25th, 2014, 06:29 PM
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Another thumbs up for Umbria. Loved my visit. Stayed in Gubbio and Spello (Palazzo Bocci ****), plus Orvietto on another trip. Visited Assisi, Montefalco, Todi, Civita do Bagnoreggio and enjlyed all. Lots of great food, wine, scenery.

I,ve never had a car drop charge and have always returned in a diff location. Avis Hertz or thru Autoeurope. I dropped my car right at the Foligno trainstation. I believe it was an Avis that trip.

Be sure to have some Sagrantino di Montefalco.

Buon viaggio!
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May 25th, 2014, 06:29 PM
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I also suggest staying in a smaller town or a countryside rental rather than Perugia. It will be much easier than trying to navigate in and out of Perugia. Exploring the towns and countryside of Umbria is one of my favorite things to do in Italy (or anywhere). I think you will also enjoy the area.
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May 25th, 2014, 06:51 PM
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Do you want a recommendation for a really cool, cheap place to rent a place in the countryside for a few days? Check out Ideale Vacanze.
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May 25th, 2014, 07:01 PM
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Another vote for Umbria.

While in Assisi, get off the main drag and see the back streets and lanes. Quite beautiful. And make your way to the Cathedral of San Rufino, including the baptismal font where Francis and Clare were baptized as infants.

I had an excellent meal at Restaurant Medioevo in Assisi.
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May 25th, 2014, 09:25 PM
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>>>You might take the train to Orvieto, have a look around, and pick up the car there (could make a quick trip to Bagnoreggio, too)<<<

That won't work. The car rental would be closed (not open on Saturday afternoon).

Europecar in Foligno is supposed to be open Saturday afternoon, but I would double check. I've also seen some complaints about rentals with them, but think you could book through Autoeurope as they seem to respond to any problems.
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May 26th, 2014, 02:18 AM
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I believe the Eurochocolate festival runs until Oct 26 this year, and it is the type of event you either want to be part of or want to avoid. It is an enormous trade fair with global producers mounting tents (Nestle, Hershey, Lindt, Cadbury, etc in addition to Italian producers) and it can be very crowded, especially in its final weekend. Even if you don't go into Perugia proper on those days (when it would be extremely difficult to do any sightseeing other than the festival), the traffic and festivities (probably including fireworks at night for the close) will be felt all around the immediate area of Perugia.
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