Gubbio is a municipality with 30,417 inhabitants (as of March 31, 2023) in the province of Perugia, which is part of the Umbria region. The town is around 35 km from Perugia and is located at the foot of Monte Ingino. It is famous for its well-preserved historic center and its many traditions and festivals.

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For hiking enthusiasts, there are many interesting tours in the Gubbio area, where you can also follow in the footsteps of St. Francis. The famous Sentiero di San Francesco is 192 km long and leads from the pilgrimage site of La Verna via Gubbio to Assisi. On the southern outskirts of the town, you can visit the Parco della Vittorina, where you will find a church in which St. Francis is traditionally venerated. Here, the saint is said to have tamed a wolf that had previously caused many problems for the town. Just a few kilometers from the town, on the hill in front of Mount Igino, there is the Parco di Coppo, a well-equipped picnic area with children’s playgrounds, a restaurant, a bar and other services. The surrounding area also includes the Gola del Bottaccione, a geologically extremely interesting gorge where you can also take a guided tour of the caves, and the Parco del Monte Cucco, a nature reserve in the Appennine mountains.

Brief info with map available here: https://goo.gl/maps/kmc2HMZbPpwpdeCH7

Infrastructure

Gubbio can be reached by car by leaving the A14 highway at Fano and continuing towards Rome (if coming from the north), or by leaving it at Ancona Nord and then driving towards Jesi-Fabriano (coming from the south), or by leaving the A1 highway at Arezzo and then continuing towards Città di Castello (coming from the north), or at Orte and continuing towards Perugia-Cesena (coming from the south). You can also travel by train, as there is a stop at Fossato di Vico/Gubbio on the Rome-Ancona line.

The three levels of the city are connected by two public elevators. There is also a two-seater cable car from Gubbio (532 m) to the Basilica of Sant’Ubaldo at 803 meters.

History

The history of the town of Gubbio dates back to pre-Roman times. Over the centuries, the city has been ruled by numerous powers such as the Romans, Byzantines, Lombards and Franks. In the Middle Ages, Gubbio achieved great importance thanks to its strategic location and its cultural and artistic wealth. Numerous monuments and works of art that bear witness to its glorious history are still preserved in the city today.

Economy

The Gubbio area is home to small and medium-sized businesses, many of which operate in the tourism and craft sectors. The production of ceramics and wrought iron, as well as goldsmithing have a long tradition, as do inlay work, carving, sculpture, carpentry, restoration, violin making and model making. As far as industry is concerned, despite its small size, Gubbio has numerous companies established on the national and international market, particularly in the cement industry.

Culture

Gubbio is one of the oldest towns in Umbria. It is excellently preserved and rich in buildings that bear witness to a glorious past, especially its heyday in the 13th and 14th century. The medieval old town is considered one of the most beautiful in Europe and is rich in historical monuments.

The town is famous for the Festa dei Ceri, a festival with a thousand-year-old tradition that takes place every year on May 15th. It is dedicated to the patron saint of the city, St. Ubald of Gubbio.

On the last Sunday in May, the Palio della Balestra takes place, a folkloristic event with medieval costumes, crossbow shooting and flag-waving.

Sights

Piazza Grande: The square is the beating heart of the city, with a history dating back to Roman times. Over the centuries, it has been the center of the city’s social and cultural life and the venue for important religious and secular events. Today it is the ideal place to stroll around and enjoy the unique atmosphere of Gubbio. It is a beautiful square with stone paving, surrounded by medieval buildings and ancient fountains.

Palazzo dei Consoli: An exceptionally beautiful building with a stone façade, wrought-iron decorations and Gothic windows. Inside, you can visit the Gubbio Civic Museum, which exhibits important collections of art and history. The palazzo is located on the Piazza Grande. It was built in the 14th century and has housed works of art of great value throughout its history. Today, it is one of Gubbio’s landmarks and a must-see for every visitor to the city.

Teatro Romano: Ancient Roman theater from the 1st century AD, which today attracts visitors from all over the world. During Roman times, it could seat around 6,000 spectators and was used for theater and music performances. Over the centuries, the theater was abandoned and covered in vegetation until it was rediscovered and restored in the 20th century. It is just a short walk from the old town and offers excellent panoramic views of the city and the surrounding mountains.

Gubbio Cathedral: A jewel of Romanesque architecture with a stone façade and three naves. It is located in the old town of Gubbio. Inside, you can admire works of art by great masters, including the painting of the Madonna del Belvedere by Matteo da Gualdo.

Basilica of Sant’Ubaldo: A particularly beautiful Gothic-style building erected in the 14th century. It is located on Monte Ingino above Gubbio and impresses with its imposing 76- meter-high bell tower. Inside, you can admire works of art and frescoes by great masters, including a 14th century painting depicting St. Ubaldo, the bishop and patron saint of Gubbio.

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