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Would like your help with 1 1/2 day driving tour of Umbria!

Would like your help with 1 1/2 day driving tour of Umbria!

Old May 1st, 2010, 06:41 AM
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Would like your help with 1 1/2 day driving tour of Umbria!

We are a group of Texans going to Italy this Fall. We stay in Bucine which is about 40 miles south of Florence (close to and west of A1). We have stayed at this Villa several times and are very familiar with Tuscany. This trip we are looking forward to spending time in Umbria. We have several cars.

Generally, we are interested in the most unique towns, scenic driving tour, great local cruisine and wines.

If we have a day and a half to see the highlights of Umbria, can you suggest a driving itinerary, not to miss restaurant and greatest towns?

Thanks!
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Old May 1st, 2010, 06:49 AM
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Well, as a start Urbino would be a must, they say. and there are small towns around there, like San Leo, said to have great views.

I'm planning the same trip in June, so I'll be watching to see what replies you get. We are definitely going to Urbino!
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Old May 1st, 2010, 07:17 AM
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Urbino and San Leo are in le Marche, not Umbria.

Probably the not-to-miss restaurant in Umbria is Il Coccorone, in Montefalco.

http://www.coccorone.com/

You really need to say more about your likes and dislikes. There are many towns and cities in Umbria that are unusual and unique, plus several scenic areas, and you can't see them all in 1.5 days. Umbria is an entire region of Italy. Have you read a guidebook at all?
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Old May 1st, 2010, 08:03 AM
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My favorite Umbrian towns in rank order:
Assisi
Spello
Bevagna
Gubbio
Montefalco

All, except Gubbio, make a nice loop to drive.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 08:05 AM
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Bucine does not seem to be close to Umbria--its near Montevarchi and would only allow approaches to Umbria from the north. Do you intend to spend an overnight in you 1 1/2 days? Otherwise it is a daytrip and its difficult to imagine a 1/2 day journey. I don't think planning an evening dinner is practical w/o an overnight.

Castiglione del Lago would be logical as well as Perugia and Assisi. Further trips would include Bevagna, Montefalco, Spello and others down the valley. Have you visited Orvieto? It would be an easy drive down the A-1, although close to 100 km.

As for wines, the Sagrantinos and Rosso from the Bevagna/Montefalco area would be a good target with enotecas and wineries as possible visits--but that would be a problem in driving a long way back afterwards.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 10:14 AM
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Another vote for Assisi!

And a great restaurant there is MedioEvo. Best gnocchi with gorgonzola sauce that I've ever had!!!

www.ristorantemedioevoassisi.it
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Old May 1st, 2010, 06:27 PM
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A large group traveling in several cars... If you plan to stick together, I can't see being able to explore more than one Umbrian town in a day. Maybe two if they were very close together. Much of Umbria is, IMO, too far from Bucine for a comfortable day trip. About the only positive I see is that you're very familiar with the villa in Bucine and would likely have no trouble finding your way back to it in the dark.

If you do plan to stick together, I'd book your lunch reservation in advance, or you could lose precious time finding a restaurant able to accommodate a large group.
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Old May 1st, 2010, 06:42 PM
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Love Fodors (still wish we had the old format). Looks like we could do Gubbio during our 1/2 day. We get an apartment for the week at Lupinari every couple years. Therefore won't be staying in Umbria overnight. Thanks, probably won't be doing dinner but looks like two Umbrian lunches. The restaurants look very good.

Thanks for wine recommendations. Will try the reds while in Umbria. Looks like Orvieto may be too much for this trip.

This is exactly the kind of info we were looking for ~ thanks.
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Old May 2nd, 2010, 10:00 PM
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If you are adventurous in your driving, I would suggest also you look up Piano Grande, a very unique and fascinating area in Umbria, not far from Norcia where you could sample some of the area's typical pork products, wines, etc.
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Old May 3rd, 2010, 08:19 AM
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Zeppole: I guess I'd better remember whether I'm in Umbria or Le Marche when I get to Italy in June!! Dumb mistake.

We'll be in Montone,for one week,which is, of course, in Umbria, not too far from Gubbio, and we plan to take one long trip or maybe an overnight to Urbino. but that's no excuse.

That restaurant in Montefalco looks right good.

And I'm getting some good tips from these postings. thanks.
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Old May 3rd, 2010, 08:29 AM
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Our favorite Umbrian towns are:

Spello
Assisi
Bevagna
Montefalco
Trevi

All of these are fairly close to one another. We ate a wonderful restaurant in Bevagna, Ottavius, that I highly recommend.

Tracy
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Old May 3rd, 2010, 01:34 PM
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Another restaurant idea for Montefalco is L'Alchemista which is located in the village cento piazza--good food at a reasonable price. And a very nice enoteca.
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Old May 3rd, 2010, 02:17 PM
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I'll add my vote to a yummy lunch at L'alchimista in Montefalco. Try the regional pasta, strozzapreti (translates as something like "strangled priests") with saffron cheese, and sample the local Sagrantino wine, too.

Favorite Umbrian towns, besides quiet little Montefalco (certainly have not seen them all):

Perugia - (a city not a town, but the historical center is fairly compact and amazing). Have a pricey but good pastry, or just admire the gorgeous window display, at Cafe Sandri.

Assisi - besides the basilica and other religious sites, the town has good shopping, and if you have time, go up Mt Subasio (can do a moderate hike or drive) to the hermitage where St Francis lived and meditated in tiny caves. Very serene and spritual.

Spello - small and picture perfect. Not far from Assisi, so could combine those two.

Bevagna - not a hilltown, a little walled town with charm. Look for the local pasta shop and take some fresh pasta home to make for dinner.
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Old May 4th, 2010, 06:14 PM
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bookmarking
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Old May 5th, 2010, 06:17 AM
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We liked Gubbio and Spello. A very good restaurant (recommended by Maitai Tom in his trip report) is the Picchio Verde in Gubbio.
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Old May 5th, 2010, 06:25 AM
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Another vote for Picchio Verde in Gubbio.
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