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Walking the Hill Towns of Umbria

Program Number: 18709RJ
Start and End Dates:
5/3/2013 - 5/11/2013; 5/2/2014 - 5/10/2014; 9/12/2014 - 9/20/2014; 10/3/2014 - 10/11/2014;
Duration: 8 nights
Location: Italy
Price starting at: $2,395.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Walking/Hiking Activity Level: t (see description)
Meals: 16; 6 Breakfasts, 5 Lunches, 5 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian; Low Fat    

With all the stunning landscape of Tuscany but none of the crowds, Umbria holds a special place in the hearts of those who love the traditional, the serene and the authentic Italian countryside. And with rolling hills, picturesque medieval towns and beautiful vineyards and valleys, it also holds a special place for those who love to walk. Join local experts for spirited and informative rambles through this truly unique region.


• Above the town of Spoleto, join a truffle farmer to learn the proper way to hunt this delicacy.
• Climb through the Umbrian valley with views of Assisi and Trevi to the Colleciocco winery for a tasting.
• In the town of Bevagna, visit a medieval paper manufacturer to learn the technique of this ancient art.

Activity Particulars

Walking up to 4.5 hours per day on paths and mountain trails up and down over mixed terrain. Elevations ranging from 1000-2000 feet. Sturdy walking/hiking shoes are required (ankle-high shoes are not required, but highly recommended).

Itinerary Summary

Arrival Rome, coach to Foligno, 7 nights; coach to Rome; departure.

Overnight flight from the U.S.A.
1 night
Arrival Rome
Coach to Foligno
7 nights
Coach to Rome

Pass olive groves to the peaceful medieval town of Bevagna, home to two of Umbria’s finest Romanesque churches. Beginning at St. Francis’ Hermitage, walk down to Assisi and its tranquil backstreets. With a truffle farmer in Monte Patrico, learn how to hunt for truffles properly and then enjoy lunch at his home. In one of Umbria’s loveliest hill towns, Spoleto, view the bridge and aqueduct Ponte delle Torri. Walk along the Roman aqueduct from the tiny hamlet of Collepino to Spello for beautiful views of the entire Umbrian valley. Pass through an uninhabited area with gentle ups and downs to the village of Giano and the splendid Abbey of Saint Felice.


“Dolce far niente,” the “sweetness of doing nothing.” This ode to leisure is a distinctly Italian phrase, and yet the expression does not do justice to the hard-work ethos of the nation’s inhabitants. The monuments, art and civilization bequeathed to the people of modern Italy are a testament to the industry of their forebearers, and the legacy lives on in today’s Italians, who work hard to better enjoy the sweetness of repose.

Family-owned hotel in the historic center of Foligno and also the pedestrian area of the town.
Meals and Lodgings
   Hotel Italia
  Foligno, Italy 7 nights
 Hotel Italia
Type: Full Service Hotel
  Description: Located in the historical center, in the pedestrian area, quiet surroundings. Family run and it was once an ancient noble palace, and it has very well known restaurant.
  Contact info: Piazza Matteotti 12
Foligno,  06034 Italy
phone: +390742350412
  Room amenities: Telephone, TV, safe.
  Facility amenities: Wireless internet available in the public areas, lounge, restaurant.
  Smoking allowed: Yes
  Elevators available: Yes
  Additional nights prior: N/A Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services if you would like assistance making hotel reservations for additional non-program nights. (800) 241-1404
  Check in time: 3:00 PM
  Additional nights after: N/A Please contact Road Scholar Travel Services if you would like assistance making hotel reservations for additional non-program nights. (800) 241-1404
  Check out time: 11:00 AM

Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Hotel check-in is at 2:00 PM. Meet in hotel lobby at 5:00 PM. You will be staying at Hotel Italia that night.
  End of Program:
After breakfast on the last day, morning transfer to Rome airport. You will be staying at Hotel Italia the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required. Valid passport with expiration at least 6 months after the return date.
  Parking availability:
Parking at the airport and hotel.
Transportation (For Independent Travelers)
  Train or bus availability: Public transportation. Information will be provided in the final program packet.
To Start of Program
  Location:  Foligno
  Nearest city or town:  Gualdo Cattaneo
  Nearest airport:  Rome
  Transportation to site: From the Rome airport take the Leonardo Express train to the Termini central train station. You may then connect to a train to Foligno (approx. 1 1/2 hour train ride). The hotel is approximately 500 meters, a five minute walk, from the Foligno train station. Taxis are available.
  From End of Program
  Location: Foligno
  Transportation from site: You may transfer via train to the Rome Fiumincino Airport. The hotel or Group Leader can assist you with directions.
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Elevation Note: Highest elevation is 3800 feet, this is only one day.

Equipment Requirements: Ankle high walking boots.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Daily Schedule

Day 1: Departures
(Friday, May 3)
 In Transit: In transit on overnight flight from North America to Europe. Arrivals the following day in Rome.

Day 2: Arrivals in Rome and Foligno.
(Saturday, May 4)
 Arrive To: Travelers will be met at Rome's Da Vinci Airport and transferred by private coach directly to the hotel in Foligno (915 feet) (approximately 2.5 hours).
 Dinner: Dinner will be served at the hotel.
 Evening: Welcome drink and introduction of the guides and hotel staff, and a brief orientation of the week's walks.
Accommodations: Hotel Italia
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 3: Bevagna - “Olive Oil Walk” and Umbria Medieval Paper manufacture excursion. 3.5 hours of total walking.
(Sunday, May 5)
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast served at the hotel.
 Morning: Transfer from the hotel for a panoramic walk from the hotel to an olive mill; learn about olive oil production.
 Lunch: Lunch will be taken at a local establishment.
 Afternoon: Walk through vineyards and olive groves to the serene and handsome medieval town of Bevagna (662 feet). This town has two of Umbria's finest Romanesque churches. This afternoon and excursion to a medieval paper manufacture to learn the technique of this ancient art. Transfer back to the hotel.
 Dinner: Dinner will be served at the hotel.
Accommodations: Hotel Italia
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 4: Montefalco and the "Wine Country" - 4.5 hours of total walking.
(Monday, May 6)
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast served at the hotel.
 Morning: Walk to the Colleciocco winery, north of Montefalco (1085 feet). This Umbrian valley offers wonderful views of the cities Assisi and Trevi, walk through woods and open fields to the winery. Tour the winery then conclude with a wine tasting.
 Lunch: Lunch will be served at the winery in conjunction with the wine tasting.
 Afternoon: Continue walking through the southern part of Montefalco back to the hotel.
 Dinner: Dinner is independent.
Accommodations: Hotel Italia
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 5: "A Day in Perugia" - 2 hours total walking.
(Tuesday, May 7)
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast served at the hotel.
 Morning: Travel by private coach to Perugia (673 feet) where a stop will be made for a city walk. Perugia is one of the 12 Etruscan city-states, the regional capital and one of the largest state universities in the country.
 Lunch: Lunch will be taken independently in Perugia.
 Afternoon: Independent afternoon in Perugia, late afternoon return to Foligno.
 Dinner: Dinner will be served at the hotel.
Accommodations: Hotel Italia
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 6: St. Francis hermitage "Assisi Walk" - 2 hours town walking on cobbled stones and asphalt.
(Wednesday, May 8)
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast served at the hotel.
 Morning: Private coach directly to St. Francis. Hermitage to begin today's walk down to Assisi; excursion through Assisi (1300 feet). Assisi is visible for miles around, tucked under the ridge of Monte Subasio, the tranquil backstreets and homes with geranium-filled window boxes feels like you are walking back in time.
 Lunch: Lunch in Assisi.
 Afternoon: Walking at a good pace, one can see almost all the sights of Assisi in one day. Coach transfer back to the hotel. Some independent time in Assisi before returning to Foligno.
 Dinner: Dinner will be taken at the hotel.
Accommodations: Hotel Italia
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 7: "Valnerina & Truffle Walk", learn how to hunt for truffles and explore Spoleto - 3.5 hours total walking.
(Thursday, May 9)
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast served at the hotel.
 Morning: Transfer by private coach to Monte Patrico for a “learning” truffle hunt. Monte Patrico is located above the town of Spoleto, on the summit of the Valnerina Mountains known for its rugged beauty. The truffle farmer will give a lecture and teach you how to hunt for the truffles properly.
 Lunch: Lunch will be taken with the truffle farmer at this home.
 Afternoon: In the afternoon, transfer by coach to the woods of Monteluco and walk down to Spoleto, one of Umbria's loveliest hill towns. In Spoleto (1299 feet) view the Ponte delle Torri (one of the greatest engineering works of the Trecento, a bridge and aqueduct of ten towering arches linking Spoleto with the slopes of Monteluco), walk to the upper part of the town center before taking the coach back to the hotel.
 Dinner: Dinner is independent.
Accommodations: Hotel Italia
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch

Day 8: Collepino to Spello along the Roman Aqueduct. 3 hours of total walking.
(Friday, May 10)
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast will be served at the hotel.
 Morning: This morning our walk will begin from the tiny hamlet of Collepino and take us to Spello, a former Roman town that is known today for its medieval character. We will walk along a Roman aqueduct that once provided the town of Spello with water from Mount Subasio. It is an easy walk on a comfortable trail with beautiful views of the local Chiona valley and eventually the entire Umbrian valley.
 Lunch: A special meal will be served at a local restaurant in Spello.
 Afternoon: Enjoy a short orientation walk in Spello and some time to explore on your own in town. Transfer back to the hotel to pack and prepare for the next day's departure.
 Dinner: Dinner will be served at the hotel.
Accommodations: Hotel Italia
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 9: Departures
(Saturday, May 11)
 Breakfast: Buffet breakfast will be served at the hotel.
 In Transit: After breakfast, return transfer by private coach (2.5 hours) to the Rome airport. Please note: the program ends at the airport in Rome.
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List

A Traveller's History of Italy

Author: Valerio Lintner

Description: A brief history of Italy through the 1990s -- wide-ranging, accessible and necessarily condensed. With a useful chronology and historical gazetteer, this book marches confidently through the centuries.

A Valley in Italy, The Many Seasons of a Villa in Umbria

Author: Lisa St. Aubin de Teran

Description: This short memoir chronicles a year in the small Umbrian village of San Orsola--especially the delights and frustrations of renovating a decayed villa. Taking in food, wine, local customs and landscapes, the book is an excellent introduction to the region

After Hannibal

Author: Barry Unsworth

Description: Unsworth's vivid novel takes in the history, landscape, pleasures and the other Americans and Europeans, like himself, who live in Umbria.

D.H. Lawrence and Italy

Author: D.H. Lawrence

Description: This omnibus Penguin Classics edition includes Lawrence's three travel tales, each very different in tone and all wonderful: Sea and Sardinia is a nostalgic look at traditional ways of life; Twilight in Italy, an evocation of Lawrence's memorable stay on Lake Garda; and Etruscan Places his musings on ancient sites, including the painted tombs of Tarquinia.

Every Pilgrim's Guide to Assissi

Author: Judith Dean

Description: With travel tips and an introduction for those wishing to discover more about Frances and Clare, this handy pocket guide covers not just Assisi and the Basilica of St. Francis but also easy excursions father afield, including The Hermitage (Carceri), Rivotorto, the sanctuaries of the Rieti Valley, Gubbio, Perugia and Cortona.

Eyewitness Guide Umbria

Author: Eyewitness Guides

Description: A marvelously illustrated, compact guide to the culture, history and attractions of Umbria, organized geographically and especially helpful for its innovative site plans, building diagrams and local maps.

Italy in Mind

Author: Alice Powers

Description: A terrific collection of some of the best literary writing on Italy, including pieces by Melville, Lawrence, Henry James, Mary McCarthy and many others.

La Bella Figura, A Field Guide to the Italian Mind

Author: Beppe Severgnini

Description: Italians themselves love this guide to the Italian character, which addresses their never-ending passion for beauty, disorder and high emotion. Severgnini opens the book with a snapshot of the hubbub at Malpensa Airport, then moves on to Tuscany, Rome, Naples and Sardinia.

Mysteries of the Middle Ages, And the Beginning of the Modern World

Author: Thomas Cahill

Description: Cahill deftly evokes the historic glories of the major medieval figures (and the places they frequented) in this illuminating overview of philosophy, art and literature.

On The Road with Francis of Assisi

Author: Linda Bird Francke

Description: Assisi wandered for 20 years, affording Newsweek editor Francke and her patient husband plenty to see and do in the piazzas, sanctuaries and chapels of Assisi, Siena, Bologna, Venice, Gubbio, Rome and other choice spots.


Author: Michael Dibdin

Description: Venetian crime investigator Aurelio Zen goes after the kidnappers of a Perugian industrialist in this enjoyable thriller, winner of the Gold Dagger Award (and first book in the series).

Reluctant Saint, The Life of Francis of Assisi

Author: Donald Spoto

Description: Spoto draws on fascinating new research to explore the travels, spirit and work of the beloved saint. This engaging portrait provides an excellent overview of the life of St. Francis.

Rick Steves' Italian Phrase Book & Dictionary

Author: Rick Steves

Description: This compact phrase book, organized thematically and with a brief dictionary, also includes Steves' insight into how to break the ice and make friends around the world.

Songbirds, Truffles and Wolves, An American Naturalist in Italy

Author: Gary Paul Nabhan

Description: The author, a poet and naturalist, heads along the Franciscan Way from Florence to Assisi. This most unusual travelogue combines natural history, spirituality and a lively appreciation of local food and food traditions. A print-on-demand paperback.

The Art of the Renaissance

Author: Peter Murray

Description: A classic, illustrated survey of the world of the Renaissance and its art. With chapters on Florence and its artists, the Netherlands, early illustrated books and many individual artists.

The Italian Renaissance

Author: J. H. Plumb

Description: A well-written history of the Renaissance, its artists and thinkers, with chapters on Florence, Milan, Rome and Venice, Michelangelo, Da Vinci and Women of the Renaissance.

Umbria Regional Map

Author: Touring Club Italiano

Description: A detailed map at a scale of 1:200,000.

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