Assisi Part One can be found here.
Assisi feels untouched by time
Roman Temple of Minerva
While St Francis dominates the mood of Assisi, Roman history is strongly in evidence as well. Walking east from St Francis Basilica, Piazza del Comune
was once the Roman forum with the superb colonnades of Temple of Minerva
looking out onto the square. Some of the neighbouring shops have basements that you can sneak into to view remains of Roman buildings. Indeed, the first of the Basilica’s frescoes shows St Francis standing in front of this elegant Roman temple.
Church of St Clare contains the saint’s body and the crucifix which spoke to St Francis
Walking up the hill towards the fortress of Rocca Maggiore
with fine views over the town and the valley below (and the nearby city of Perugia
), the candy-striped Church of St Clare
(Chiesa di Santa Chiara
) contains the remains of St Clare
in its crypt and a cross that reportedly spoke to St Francis
Remains of a Roman amphitheatre
Further up the hill along a tangled road, an innocuous oval shaped field was once the battlefields for Roman gladiators and the site of a Roman amphitheatre
while Rocca Maggiore hosts supplements its superb vistas with an art gallery.
An excellent half-hour walk runs south of Assisi. Down a steep, rocky path lined with olive groves, the Church and Convent of San Damiano. Within this church, St Francis prayed before the crucifix with the cross saying to rebuild and re-establish the moral foundations of Christ’s church.
Surprises around every corner
Explore the alleyways at night
Religious Imagery adorns Assisi
Assisi is at its peaceful best at night
. Without the hordes crowding the streets by day, Assisi dozes, subtle lighting inviting quiet exploration of the ancient alleyways. The Basilica glistens in the night air while restaurants contentedly ply their trade. The night streets have an almost haunting feel strolling the meandering lanes, ancient stonework walls reflecting the lights in an eerie, spiritual manner.
With its UNESCO World Heritage listing, Assisi is an Umbrian highlight of Italy with places to enjoy the serenity and peace of the town. Beautiful valley panoramas, fascinating cobbled alleyways and the story of a remarkable man adds to the mystery and majesty of Assisi.