Though I have already traveled to the province of Umbria, in my travels I had not been able to make it to Assisi. This weekend I was able to take a day trip o the small town on a huge hill for a day of peace and reflection.
The town is tiny, but extremely beautiful and full of history, especially that of St. Francis and St. Claire of Assisi. Put on your best and most comfortable walking shoes, because everything, and I mean EVERYTHING is uphill. In the midst of catching our breaths we also stopped in some of the charming shops along the way to our destinations. The city itself has a very old Italian town feel. Most all of the stores are family run businesses. There are no big chains, or overwhelmingly large department stores, just quaint “homey” shops. There is everything from gelaterias, and panini shops, to beautiful art studios with artists creating new pieces directly in front of you. One of my favorite in particular was an art studio called Laura Pittrice. Click the link to check out her website.
While there we also went to several churches including: Basilica di San Francesco d’Assisi, where the remains of St. Francis lay, Cathedral di San Rufino, Santa Maria deli Angeli, and the Basilica di Santa Chiara, where St. Claire’s remains are located. All three churches covered in breathtaking frescoes, stain glass, and incredible wood workings.
Though a pain to walk up, the hills in Assisi provide the perfect platform to view the whole town. From the top you can see the picturesque landscape that will leave you speechless. It is the perfect place to contemplate life and let all of your worries fade away.
Overall it was a very moving day of reflection and peace. The motto of the town, Pax et bonus, or in english, “Peace and the good,” is very fitting for the area. It was the perfect place a good to reflect on my semester so far and the time I have left in Italy, which is unfortunately coming to an end very soon.