Intro: Just a short journey north of Rome lies the enchanting little hill town of Orvieto. Close by is the stunning village of Civita de Bagnoregio. This is a delightful day trip to take from the exciting hustle and bustle of Rome.
Your day tour with Stefano Rome Tours begins when you are picked up from your hotel at 8:00 AM by your English speaking Driver. You will return at approximately 5:00 PM.
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Civita di Bagnoreggio
Duration: One Day Departure from:
We will begin by taking a scenic two-hour drive to 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, we 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 the Corporal 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 by Signorelli. The frescoes represent many events in Christianity including the Apocalypse, theLast 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 will have the opportunity to 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), are also produced in small quantities.
After our visit to Orvieto, we will take a short 30-minute drive to 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 isollation from the real world, that only about 20 people live here year around.
Originally, Civita was connected to the bigger town of Bagnoregio, but eventually, the saddle that connected the two towns eroded and now the footbridge connects Civita and Bagnoregio. Civita 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 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.
From here your driver will bring you back to your hotel. Thank you for booking Stefano Rome Tours for your tours in Rome and beyond. We hope to see you in Italy very soon!
* Tour price includes a professional English speaking Driver with a private deluxe vehicle, Italy’s VAT tax, fuel cost, insurance, applicable toll and parking fees. It does not include entrance fees to any sites, lunch, wine tasting, gratuities, or other client personal expenses.
* If you are pleased with the service you received from your Driver, a minimum of 10-15% gratuity is customary in Italy.
* The listed price listed for the tour is per vehicle, not per person. Our guests may split the cost of the tour.
* Payment for the tour will be made in Euro funds to your Driver at the end of your journey. You may also prepay for the tour via PayPal, just let us know in advance if you wish to prepaty for the service.
* You will be provided an English speaking driver who is not a locally licensed tour guide. Italy's strict laws aimed at protecting the legitimacy of licensed tour guides do not permit tour drivers to accompany, guide, or provide touristc information away from the vehicle. Your driver will provide you with basic information about the places you visit and assist you as much as possible, but will be required to remain with the vehicle while you sightsee.
* Civita di Bagnoreggio requires a walk up an incline on a narrow foot bridge between the parking area and the town itself. The town is not accessible by vehicle. Please be sure you are physically fit to walk the distance and on a slight incline. Please refer to the photos and video on this page for a visual reference of the distance you must walk on the foot bridge.
* Please allow between 1 or 2 business days for email inquiry replies and service confirmation. We have limited office hours on Sundays, please allow for additiona time.
CANCELLATION POLICY: Don’t worry, we do not ask for your personal credit card information, require advance deposits to reserve your tour, or penalize you for cancellations. We operate on the Honor System, so we kindly ask that cancellations be made at the minimum 7 days in advance so we can rebook your service and your reserved driver does not lose work for that day. We thank you for your cooperation and consideration.
For more answers to your questions please visit our F.A.Q Page
Tips * Please wear comfortable shoes and clothing on this and any day tours.
* Be sure to bring your cameras for plenty of photo and video opportunities.
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