Civita di Bagnoregio & Orvieto travel Guide
A nice journey southern of Florence lies the enchanting little hill town of Orvieto. Close by is the
postcard perfect village of Civita de Bagnoregio.
Together, our Orvieto & Civita di Bagnoregio Day Tour is a delig7htful excursion into the beautiful and
relaxing countryside of Umbria.
Civita di Bagnoregio
A small ancient village that clings to the precipice of the steep hill it sits on, a small island in an eerie sea of uninhabitable landscape that makes up the surrounding valleys.
For this reason views of Civita di Bagnoregio from across the valley are incredibly picturesque.
This is also one of the most popular villages featured in post cards from Italy.
Civita is a traffic-free community, and can be reached only by a footbridge suspended in the air.
Perhaps for this reason, and its complete isolation from the real world, that only about 20 people live here year around.
Originally, Civita di Bagnoregio was connected to the bigger town of Bagnoregio, (hence the name, Civita of Bagnoregio) but eventually, the saddle that connected the two towns eroded and now
the footbridge connects Civita and Bagnoregio.
Civita di Bagnoregio was founded by the Etruscans on a hill of ‘tuff’.
Tuff (from the Italian "tufo") is a type of rock consisting of consolidated volcanic ash ejected from vents during a volcanic eruption.
There are several delightful shops and some of the architecture spans several thousand years.
The residence are devoted stewards of this village, meticulously caring for it and its appearance.
Although it appears this town has miraculously survived the passage of time clinging to life with sheer determination, it’s actually a dying city, destined to one day perish.
The town was placed on the World Monuments Fund's 2006 Watch List of the 100 Most Endangered Sites, due to the threats it faces from erosion and unregulated tourism.
Please note that since Civita di Bagnoregio prohibits vehicles, visitors will have a 500 yard walk mostly uphill to get to the village.
But the many tourists who visit Civita each year will say that the walk is well worth the experience.
Orvieto, a town perched high atop a hill. Orvieto is impressively situated above a volcanic plug, which is a volcanic landform created when magma hardens within a vent on an active volcano.
Upon arrival, you will visit the stunning Cathedral in Orvieto, which was built in the fourteenth century.
Pope Urban IV ordered the construction of the cathedral to provide a beautiful, holy place for thCorporal of Bolsena.
The Corporal of Bolsena was a miracle that is said to have occurred in the town of Bolsena in 1263.
The Corporal is the small cloth upon which the host and the chalice are placed during the Roman Catholic Eucharist.
It was believed that this particular Corporal had drops of blood on it, thus substantiating the Roman Catholic belief that the bread and wine used in the observation of the Eucharist become the literal body and blood of Christ.
The Corporal is still held in a reliquary in the center of the cathedral and brought
out for various religious observances.
The cathedral’s façade contains many of the elements of design that were common to religious construction from the 14th to the 20th century.
The cathedral’s construction was begun in 1290 and lasted for almost 300 years.
During the course of that time, the design evolved from Romanesque to Gothic.
Many significant works of art can be found in the cathedral, and a visit to the Chapel of the Madonna di San Brizio is a must-see.
It contains frescoes begun by Fra Angelico and finished bySignorelli.
The frescoes represent many events in Christianity including the Apocalypse and the Last Judgment.
They begin with the Preaching of the Antichrist and continue to the Doomsday and the Resurrection of the Flesh.
After visiting the cathedral, if you wish you can visit the Pozzo di San Patrizio (the well of St. Patrice).
Orvieto’s main military weakness was a lack of water, so the Medici Pope Clement VII ordered the well to be dug in case of a military siege.
Visitors can walk down the 248 steps to the bottom, although the only thing to see is the water at the bottom of the well.
Orvieto has several excellent restaurants where you will enjoy your lunch, and then you may want to take the opportunity to visit some of the several ceramic shops or sample the local wine only available in Orvieto.
The excellent wines are mainly white wines made from a blend of mostly Grechetto and Trebbiano.
The region has been producing wine since the middle ages, and today’s white Orvieto is dry, but a semi-sweet style, known as Orvieto Abboccato, and dolce (sweet),