From ancient roots to new directions

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From ancient roots to new directions

Umbrias three thousand years of history have seen it play a highly active role; its cultural backdrop is of the strongest weave. In the Middle Ages the Benedictine monasteries had become the cornerstones of the conservation of the ancient classical culture and of the new Christian one, philosophical and mystical. These were centres for the arts, and for technical and scientific investigations in the fields of medicine, science and agriculture.
Perugia, for example, was a lively cultural centre first in the mediaeval period, and later during the Renaissance, just as it is today. Its university, founded at the end of the 12th and the beginning of the 13th centuries, is one of the oldest in Europe. Orvieto was one of the pope's official residences for many years, attracting artistic and literary geniuses. Culturally as weil as politically it was quite self-reliant. This was then the fertile ground from which Umbrian culture sprung and continued to flourish across the centuries, supported by its commitment to ancient cultural institutions and to new, bold investments in humanism as weil as science and experiment. Its university, its schools of art, and its music courses are today famous not only throughout the land, but also across Europe, drawing thousands of students each year.
Moreover, cultural initiatives of the highest standards have sprung up - and are still springing up - everywhere, bringing together many people from all over the world. The best-known events are the Two Worlds Festival in Spoleto, the Umbrian Festival of Sacred Music and Umbria Jazz. Alongside these initiatives, the most authentic expressions of the region's old popular culture have been restored or given new life: popular celebrations such as the Candle Race and the Crossbow Contest in Gubbio, May Day in Assisi, the Quintain Joust at Foligno, the Ring Race at Narni or the historical procession on Corpus Christi day in Orvieto. Once more Umbria is boldly expressing its ancient and modern spirit, preserving its traditions and a many-facetted image of a highly composite reality.

Umbria is a place with a great tradition for hospitality and offers a large variety of accommodation possibilities: hotels, farm holiday, farmhouse, residence self-catering accommodation, b&b, rooms for rent, holiday homes, camp sites and tourist villages: there remains only to choose and undertake an interesting journey amidst myth and history. Umbria may also be discovered at any time of the year.