4. From Florence: Trasimeno Lake, Perugia & Assisi Private Tour
As you cross the Tuscan countryside, the first town you meet will be Passignano sul Trasimeno, a small medieval hamlet with ancient city walls and a beautiful fortress. The town features a famous tourist resort at a magical location which provides a stunning view of the enchanting lake and surrounding islands. After this visit you proceed through the evocative landscape until you reach the hill from which the ancient city of Perugia rises. Evidence of its Etruscan origin is preserved in the travertine walls and the conveniently located in the village centre.
Perugia is one of the most popular Italian cities of art, with a beautiful square from which you can admire architectural jewels such as the superb Palazzo dei Priori (1293-1443) and the splendid Cathedral (1345) placed beside the Loggia (1423). The elegant Fontana Maggiore (1275) is another breathtaking masterpiece. The excursion continues until you reach the quaint town where the patron saint of Italy, Saint Francis of Assisi (1181- 1226) lived, worked and died.
The town of Assisi can be found at the foot of Mount Subasi. On your arrival you will first visit the Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli, built as protection for the famous church of the "Porziuncola", where Saint Francis acknowledged his vocation and founded the Order of the Minor Friars. This is also the place where Santa Chiara began her monastic life.
Here you can also see the "rosebush without thorns", which continues to grow only in this magical place, according to a legend the rose originated from the contact of the Saint with a thorny bush. After breaking for lunch you reach the center of Assisi where you will meet with an expert local Guide who will accompany you on an exciting visit to the civil and religious artistic heritage of the city. Admire the splendid Gothic Basilica dedicated to Saint Chiara (1257) featuring characteristic pink and white bands, the Renaissance Chiesa Nuova with an elegant Dome and the Roman temple of Minerva which still retains its first century AD façade.
Discover the fourteenth century Monte Frumentario and finally visit the famous and beautiful St Francis’ Basilica, a UNESCO heritage monument, built with white-rosy stone originating from Mount Subasio. The wonderful frescoed cycles painted by Cimabue, Giotto, Simone Martini and Lorenzetti are preserved inside the Basilica. Breathe in the special atmosphere of serenity and joy that this city emanates and you will understand why it has been chosen as symbol of Peace by the delegates of the main religions in the world.