The charm of Umbria lies in the beauty of its countryside and the splendour of its myriad hill towns. They contain some of the best medieval architecture in all Italy.

Thanks to the proximity of Florence and Rome, and with the exception of Assisi, the area is still untouched by mass tourism.

The most enjoyable way to explore Umbria is to rent a car and head off the beaten track into the small villages and towns which lie scattered along the slopes of the Appenines. And if you’re visiting the major sites, make sure you bring a stout pair of shoes: the streets of those hill towns were built well before the invention of the motor car.