Tivoli – Hadrian’s Villa and Villa d’Este Tour with Stefano Rome Tours

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 Whether a Shore Excursion from the port of Civitavecchia, or a Day Trip from Rome, you will enjoy an unforgettable day through the countryside of Lazio to Tivoli and visit the stunning Villa D’Este and Hadrian’s Villa in the comfort of your own private deluxe vehicle driven by a Stefano Rome Tours knowledgeable English speaking Driver eager to help you create memories you’ll cherish for life. 

 

 






 

This popular day tour allows you to visit and compare two very splendid villas from two different ages.  Hadrian’s Villa (Villa Adriana) dates back to Ancient Rome and Villa D’Este from the Renaissance period. Both Hadrian’s Villa and Villa d’Este are listed as UNESCO Heritage Sites.




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HADRIAN’S VILLA  / VILLA ADRIANA

Your first stop will be a visit to the ruins of Hadrian’s Villa (Villa Adriana) which can only hint at the grandeur and beauty of this villa built by Emperor Hadrian to remind him of the monuments and sites he admired during his travels around the 4 corners of the Roman Empire.

This once vast complex was comprised of over 30 buildings, including the imperial palace, baths, theaters, temples, libraries, pools, gardens, and more. It was so self sufficient that the Emperor is known to have ruled the entire Roman Empire from this very residence. The site is very spacious, and you can admire the architecture from the distance as well as close-up as you explore the ruins of this Imperial residence.

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VILLA D’ESTE

From here you will continue your tour to Villa D’Este, built by the cardinal Ippolito D’Este. This elegant villa adorned with frescos is considered one of the most beautiful residences of the Renaissance.

The Villa’s countless fountains, set in the heart of magnificent Italian style gardens, create a delightfully graceful symphony of carved stone, shade, sunlight and water coming directly from the Aniene River. Strolling through these elegant gardens is a most relaxing, peaceful and awe inspiring experience.

No trip to Italy should exclude these beautiful villas that not only offer a glimpse into two distant yet significant eras of Italy’s past, but the visit is a pleasant respite from the hustle and bustle of Rome.

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For more information on this and many other exciting tours and shore excursions, as well as airport and port transfers, travel blogs with lots of uselful travel tips and information, photo gallery, reviews of our services and more, please visit us at www.StefanoRomeTours.com  And don’t forget to also join us on twitter and Face Book and share your travel adventures with other like minded travelers.

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AIRPORT and PORT TRANFSERS IN ROME

If while in Rome you are in need of chauffeured transportation from Rome Fiumicino Airport (FCO) to Rome,  Rome or Fiumicino Airport to Civitavecchia and vice versa, please visit our sister company Rome Cabs Limousine Car Service Company at www.RomeCabs.com for all your transfer needs.

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Thank you for choosing Stefano Rome Tours for your Tours and Shore Excursions.  We look forward to hearing from you and seeing you soon in Italy!

 

VACANZE ROMANE (Roman Holiday)

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Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck have continuously graced Italian merchandise with photographs from scenes from their classic film Vacanze Romane (Roman Holiday), adding a romantic charm to the Eternal City.
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From their famous encounter on the Spanish Steps, to the whirlwind scooter ride through Rome, they have taken the viewers through a virtual tour of Rome and its magnificence (and what it used to be like before it became a top travel destination for visitors!).
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With Stefano Rome Tours you too can see and experience the splendor of Rome on your own Roman Holiday tour from Rome or  shore excursion from the cruise port of Civitavecchia!
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Vacanze Romane (Roman Holiday)

Vacanze Romane (Roman Holiday)

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Although the fashion trends have changed since the days of Princess Anne and Joe Bradley, and the sites and monuments are no longer deprived of tourists, one thing continues to stay the same: the stage sets are still the way they were as in the film because they were filmed on the actual sites!
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The Colosseum is still the same as it used to be, the Spanish Steps haven’t changed either, visitors still place their hands inside the Mouth of Truth, and scooters still continue to zoom around the city’s narrow lanes and traffic congested roads.
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Want to see the famous address Via Margutta, 51 that was the address of Joe Bradley’s bachelor pad? It still exists in one of Rome’s most charming neighborhoods and we will show it to you!
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Would you like to know what famous Palace played the role of the Embassy of the country of Princess Anne? We’ll take you there AND you will have the opportunity to stand in the spot where Joe Bradley watched Princess Anne disappear around the corner when they said their last goodbyes.
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You can’t say the same about many movies filmed that were filmed 60 years ago where the architectural landscape of many cities has since been greatly transformed.
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Vacanze Romane (Roman Holiday)

Vacanze Romane (Roman Holiday)

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In this Stefano Rome Tours’ exclusive tour,  you will have the opportunity to star in your own “Vacanze Romane” on your Roman Holiday.
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You don’t have to be Princess Anne to enjoy the Spanish Steps, or Joe Bradley to accompany your significant other on a visit inside the Colosseum or give the legendary Mouth of Truth a try. This tour follows the sites, palacesmonuments and piazzas made famous in the film, that also happen to be among the most exciting places to visit in Rome!
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Whether you’re a classic movie buff, or just prefer the lighter side of Rome without visiting churches or museums, this private tour and shore excursion offers you the opportunity to enjoy the best Rome has to offer and have an exceptional Roman Holiday.

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You can find out more about our exclusive Vacanze Romane Day Tour and Shore Excursion, including a list of the places in Rome that were featured in the film on our official website: www.StefanoRomeTours.com

Next time you’re in Rome don’t just visit it, we invite you to have a great Roman Holiday!

Please visit our Flickr Photo Gallery and see our photographs taken from at the sites made famous in the movie.

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Thank your for stopping by and reading our blog. We look forward to hearing from you and seeing you soon in Italy!



The Stefano Rome Tours Team

 

 

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Tuscania: The Most Beautiful Valley In all Italy

While most of us would not be able to pick just one Italian valley as being the most beautiful in all of Italy, one world renown English novelist, poet, playwright and essayist by the name of D.H. Lawrence seemed sure he found it in spring of 1927.

And we think he probably did!

 

 

.In the late 1920’s D.H. Lawrence travelled extensively through the Tuscan countryside in preparation for the book called “Etruscan Places” that was published posthumously in 1932. Along with Cerveteri and Tarquinia, he also traveled to Tuscania, an ancient town in the region of Lazio bordering Tuscany that’s rich in Etruscan history and remains.




After a sweeping view of the wide open emerald valley, D.H. Lawrence declared: “The most beautiful view in all Italy: the Etruscan valley of Tuscania

Unspoiled by tourism and vastly green and lush, Tuscania enjoys a mild climate all year round, and offers a tranquil peaceful retreat from the action packed Rome and Florence.

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Tuscania is part of the Etruscan Mysteries tour with Stefano Rome Tours.

 

For more photos of Tuscania please visit our Flickr Photo Gallery.

You can watch the Etruscan Mystery Tour be low, or click here to watch it on  YouTube.

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Do you have a favorite view in Italy that you’d like to share? We’d love to hear from you in the comments box below.

Sharing is fun: If you enjoyed this article, please pass it along to anyone who might enjoy it as well




Thank you for reading our blog. If you have any questions about our tours, please don’t hesitate to email us at info@stefanorometours.com.

We look forward to show you Italy!

 

The Stefano Rome Tours Team 

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The Aesthetic Evolution of Raphael at Vatican Museums

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One of the best examples of the gradual evolution of Raphael’s style can be found in the Papal Apartments of the Vatican.

Four magnificent rooms known as “Le Stanze di Raffaello”  that were the Papal residence between 1507-1585.

 

 

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Though the order of the rooms does not reflect  the chronology of when Raphael created the frescos, viewers can appreciate the ever changing  style of Raphael as executed into each scene. Influences of great artists such as Bramante, Michelangelo and Leonardo are evident while still maintaining the artist’s personal touch.






The first room that can be visited is the Room of Costantine, dedicated to the life of the first Christian Emperor who symbolically donated the city of Rome to the Pope in charge during his time, Pope Sylvester I and his successors . Even if this room carries an important meaning, it is the last room that Raphael painted, therefore only the preparatory cartoons were executed by the artist himself while the majority of the painting was carried out by his pupils due to Raphael’s premature death.


The second room is the Room of Heliodorus. The frescos were created towards the end of his career between 1511-1514, about 6 years before his death. The most impressive artistic achievement in this room is the Liberation of S. Peter. In this scene Raphael masters his ability to depict glowing and moving light, working in a medium that  does not allow the gradual manipulation of colors.


Effects of this kind were unparallel by Raphael’s contemporaries until the arrival of Caravaggio almost 100 years later. The frescos in this room also reflects Raphael’s observation of Michelangelo’s style in the Sistine Chapel. In fact the two artists were working in the Vatican at the same time.


The muscular density and powerful solidarity that classifies Michelangelo’s figures are borrowed by Raphael beginning with the School of Athens in the following room.





The Room of the Signature is perhaps the most celebrated works of Raphael’s career. With respect to the chronology of the artist, we are actually moving back in time, viewing the first room that he was commissioned to paint at the young age of 25.


A clear transition  in Raphael’s style is evident in viewing the Disputation of the Holy Sacrament and the School of Athens side by side.  In the latter painting is where we also see an homage to Raphael’s biggest rival. The representation of a philosopher, Heraclitus with the resemblance of  Michelangelo is prove of Raphael’s admiration for his contemporary. After seeing his masterpiece in the Sistine Chapel, Michelangelo became an idol for the young artist.


The last part of the tour shows the forth room, which lends its name to a fire that broke out in the 9th Century in a neighborhood of the Vatican called the Borgo.

Let StefanoRomeTours and their team of licensed tour guides take you back in time to relive the crucial moments that marked Raphael’s career. This description only scratches the surface of the many historically nuances that are present in Raphael’s frescos.




Do you have any favorite artists or pieces of art inside the Vatican Museum? We’d love to hear from you in the comments box below.

 

Thank you for stopping by and reading our blog.

with love,

the Stefano Rome Tours team 

 

Visit our Vatican Tour

 

 

 

 

 

Discover Caravaggio on your Rome Shore Excursion!

.Caravaggio’s art directly inspired from reality reflects his life, grandiose and dramatic at the same time.




From Milan to Rome and from Sicily to Malta, Caravaggio went from artistic residences to various prisons during his adventurous life that tragically ended in 1610 at the young age of 39.

 

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Even if he lived a short life, this gifted artist started a revolutionary art, influencing the majority of European painters.

 

Caravaggio Painting at San Luigi dei Francesi Church

Caravaggio Painting at San Luigi dei Francesi Church

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Caravaggio’s masterpieces changed the history of painting giving the spectators the new role of eye witnesses who are engaged in the action occurring right in front of them. Standing in front of one of his paintings, one can feel alone in a crowded room surrounded only by the beauty of his art.

No other artist of the past has been able to communicate so intensively with its audience.


Even though writers of his time always struggled with praising his talent in light of his tainted past; today it’s hard to distinguish the two souls of this man and artist.





His tragic death was almost seen at the time as a divine punishment for a sinful life, but today it is just considered a mystery behind the life of one of the greatest artist in history.

He was an honest artist communicating through his art both artistic style and biography with no filters nor obstacles.

 

Caravaggio inside St Maria del Popolo Church

Caravaggio inside St Maria del Popolo Church

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Discover the masterpieces of Caravaggio that are scattered around Rome on a guided tour that will surprise you! From Santa Maria del Popolo Church and San Luigi  dei Francesi Church to Doria Pamphilj and Borghese Gallery you can retrace this artist’s fascinating life.


Stefano Rome Tours offers
shore excursions from Civitavecchia Port  to take you to the most important galleries and churches of Rome that proudly display her most treasured pieces.





Do you have a favorite artist whose art you admire? We’d love to hear from you in the comments box below.

Thank you for stopping by and reading our blog.

With love,

the Stefano Rome Tours team

 

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World Renown Mosaic Studio in the Heart of The Vatican

Hidden between two arches, in the shadow of the Sala delle Audienze of the Pope lies the small Studio of the Mosaic, one of the many treasures of the Vatican that is overlooked by most visitors. This studio contributes greatly to the art production and restoration of  the Vatican.




In the 16th century under Pope Gregory XIII, Venetian  mosaic craftsmen were called to Rome to teach the mosaic technique to the locals . By doing so they helped establish the first permanent team of Roman mosaic craftsmen.

Originally the mosaic studio was created to decorate parts of the Basilica such as the Gregorian Chapel and the Dome of Michelangelo, however the technique proved to be one of the most successful decorative styles and was extended to all the cupolas of the Basilica.

After two centuries of hard work, the Roman studio surpassed the Venetian production by creating over 26,000 color tonalities. In order to obtain a vast variety of shades, the craftsmen melted pre-existing colors together in a kiln built in the 1700’s inside the Vatican and that’s when the Studio became a permanent installation.

Around 1770 another revolutionary discovery reaffirmed the importance of the Studio worldwide. Two of the most prominent mosaic painters, Raffaelli and Aguatti, invented the filate enamels. This technique consists of re-melting the tiles, creating a malleable substance that can be stretched very thin to form minuscule pieces, sometimes smaller than 1 millimeter.




From that moment on, the mosaics produced in the Vatican were more beautiful and elegant than ever before. These small tiles could also be used to decorate jewelry and small everyday objects, setting off the commissions of the high aristocracy of Rome and the world to create one of a  kind gifts.

In fact to this day, the Studio of the Mosaics still executes works of any size on private commissions, many of which come from the United States.

The same exclusive group of artisans who work on commission from the pope also create unique mosaics  for the public which of course come with a hefty price tag.

If you want to   be one of the few people that discovers the beauty of this fascinating art studio join the exclusive private tour of the Vatican offered by StefanoRomeTours!

You can see the artisans at work and ask them questions, touch the precious pieces of glass kept in the laboratory chromatically organized, see the kiln of the 1700’s and visit the unique show room of some of the best works of the private collection. If you can’t afford a commission work this tour will at least give you a once in a lifetime experience at a much lower price!




Do you have a favorite piece of Mosaic Art you’d like to share with us? We’d love to hear from you in the comments box below.

Sharing is fun! If you enjoyed this article, please share with others who would enjoy it as well.

Thank you for stopping by and reading our blog.

With love,

the Stefano Rome Tours team

 

The Spectacular Viterbo, Calcata and Sutri Tour

While Rome is one of the world’s most exciting city to visit,  spending a day in the relaxing Roman countryside can be one of the most rewarding experience of your holiday in Italy.




The enjoyable one day Viterbo, Calcata and Sutri Tour  that we offer at Stefano Rome Tours will take you to some of the most picturesque locations in Lazio, and on your journey to these interesting sites you will also see some breathtaking Italian scenery.

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Our personal service means that you will be picked up by our professional English speaking driver at your hotel at 9.00 AM and then you will be returned home, after an exciting day, at around 5.00 PM.

 


To view the video on our YouTube channel please CLICK HERE

 

 

CALCATA

 

Sutri 

 

Our first stop on the tour is one of the best preserved medieval hill towns in the country, the quaint village of Calcata, which lies perched high upon a volcanic rock.

The village is a now a bustling center for artisans and creative intellectuals, and it is hard to believe that the village was condemned in the 1930’s for fear of landslides.

With its cobbled streets, great collection of art galleries, craft shops and ancient relics, this truly is a unique location.

 

SUTRI

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Sutri - the Ancient Amphetheater

Sutri – the Ancient Amphetheater

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Our next stop is Sutri, about a 30-minute drive north west of Calcata and it’s an Etruscan archaeological site.

This beautiful village has around 5,000 inhabitants and attractions include an Etruscan necropolis, an excavated Roman amphitheatre with dozens of rock-cut tombs, a Mithraeum found in the crypt of the village’s church, the Church of the Madonna del Parto, as well as a Romanesque cathedral, which has seven naves divided by twenty columns, all of a different origin.

The cathedral was built over the ruins of an early Christian basilica and was consecrated by Pope Innocent III in 1207. After visiting the attractions of Sutri, we head north to the ancient city of Viterbo.

 

VITERBO

 

Viterbo, Italy

Viterbo, Italy

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A charming ancient city, Viterbo is also the capital of the provincial area and lies between Lake Bolsena and Lake Vico.

First of all we will luncheon in the city and after settling with a full stomach of tasty Italian food, we will be well prepared for visiting the city’s best sights, including churches, palaces, castles and ruins.

In fact, Viterbo is considered to be one of the best preserved medieval towns of central Italy, and on entering the historic centre, via the ancient gates of the 13 Century city walls, you will be able to see why for yourself.

Places of interest on the route include the Papal Palace, the Cathedral of S. Lorenzo, Piazza del Gesù and the square’s simple but quaint 11th Century church, and the Fontana Grande, to name but just a few.

This is an ideal tour for those who wish to follow a splendid and varied itinerary that lasts a good day!

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Don’t forget: In order to be able to enter any of the churches, you will have to have your shoulders and knees covered, otherwise you will be refused entry! Furthermore, we are glad to inform you that on this tour there are no additional fees for entrance tickets.




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Tour Highlights:
Calcata :: Sutri :: Viterbo


Pick up time: approximately 9.00 am
Return time: approximately 5.00 pm


Full tour details can be found at on our website at this link: http://www.stefanorometours.com/tours/viterbocalcatasutri/

 

Thank you for stopping by and reading our blog. We look forward to show you beautiful places in Italy!

with love,

The Stefano Rome Tours team

Rome in a Day from Civitavecchia

The Cruise Port of Civitavecchia is a very popular destination for cruises in Italy, and if you are arriving by cruise ship to the port, then you really should spend a thrilling day in Rome, one of the most fascinating and historically significant cities in the world.

 

 

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We highly recommend the Rome Day From Civitavecchia Tour. This is a fabulous hassle-free way of visiting the city directly from Civitavecchia, without having to worry about how to get to Rome, or what you should see and visit when you actually reach the Eternal City.

This is because you will be picked up at the ports’ pier at 8.30 AM by your private English speaking Driver and then driven to Rome in your private deluxe vehicle, where you will be provided with an excellent day’s itinerary, before being retuned to the pier at around 5.30 PM.

 

Enjoy a video of our Rome in A Day from Civitavecchia shore excursion:

 

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This tour from Stefano Rome Tours will take you through the highlights of the city, and even before reaching Rome you will be able to enjoy the beautiful and ancient Etruscan landscape  en route.




The comfortable drive to the capital takes just over an hour on the Roman countryside highway, and your personal driver will point out to you all the places of interest on the way, as well as answer any questions you may have about the tour.

Rome has numerous sights and attractions to visit, from ancient Roman ruins to baroque churches and much, much more. As you can see below in the ‘Tour Highlights’, you will in fact be covering the city’s most famous sights, such as the Colosseum, Sistine Chapel, Pantheon and Trevi Fountain, so you can be rest assured that you will get the most out of your one day tour of Rome!

As always, remember that there is a dress code on entering churches in Italy, so please make sure that your shoulders and knees are all covered.

 

Tour Highlights


Drive by Pyramid of Caius Cestio :: Circus Maximus :: Colosseum :: Vatican Museum :: Sistine Chapel :: St. Peter’s Basilica :: Pantheon :: Trevi Fountain




Pick up time: approximately 8.00am
Return time: approximately 5.30pm

 

For more information about this and other exciting shore excursions from Civitavecchia, please CLICK HERE or visit our website at www.StefanoRomeTours.com. We look forward to showing you our Eternal City!

 

Thank you for stopping by and reading our blog.

with love,

the Stefano Rome Tours team

 

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Assisi Tour: The Fascinating Birthplace of St. Francis

The word ‘Assisi‘ is synonymous with St Francis, the patron saint of animals, the environment and Italy. In fact, he is probably the best loved saint in Italy and one of the most well known in the world.




The Assisi Tour takes us to his beautiful birthplace in the Umbrian region, Assisi, close to Perugia and over 400 meters above sea level.

 

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click to watch the Video

 

A short bio on St. Francis of Assisi: Francesco was born in 1182 or 1183 to a wealthy family, his father being a rich cloth merchant and his mother was originally from France. Throughout his early life there were signs of the man he was later to become, the founder of the Order of Friars Minor, or the Franciscans.  

The current pope, Pope Francis, also chose the name of Saint Francis.

 

St Francis, San Damiano Monastery in Assisi

St Francis, San Damiano Monastery in Assisi

 

There are many stories of his kindness to animals and fellow human beings, and of his fondness of the environment. It was around 1209 that St. Francis totally gave up all his worldly goods and took up a life of poverty.




He wore just a woollen robe, which was fastened only by a knotted rope and went about rebuilding churches and ministering to people. Others followed him and also vowed to a life of poverty, and the new order was borne.

St. Francis died on October 3, 1226 and every year on the 4th of October his Feast Day takes place, honouring the saint’s charitable life and achievements.

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The Assisi Day Tour starts off by picking you up at your hotel and then we will head to Assisi via the beautiful countryside of Lazio and Umbria. Your professional driver will of course also point out the the major points of interest en route.

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SANTA MARIA DEGLI ANGELI

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.St Maria degli Angeli

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Our first stop will be the Basilica of St. Maria degli Angeli, the place where St. Francis passed away in 1226.

Here you will have the opportunity to see the sacred Porziuncola, around which the basilica was built.

 

ASSISI

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Saint Francis Basilica in Assisi and PAX garden

Saint Francis Basilica in Assisi and PAX garden

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Next we will visit the burial place of St. Francis, namely the Basilica of St. Francis which was built straight after his canonisation in 1228.

We will then make our way down to the town’s main square, Piazza del Comune, which is also home to a very interesting Roman archaeological site, and the Temple of Minerva that once was a 1st century BC pagan temple and later converted into a beautiful Baroque church whose interior resembles a jewel box.

 

Santa Chiara Basilica in Assisi

Santa Chiara Basilica in Assisi

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Our last stop in Assisi itself will be the Basilica of St. Clare (Santa Chiara). St. Clare was one of the first women to join St. Francis’ ministry in 1212.

Her preserved body is on display in a crypt in the basilica, along with garments worn by both St. Francis and St. Clare, as well as some locks of St. Clare’s hair that St. Francis cut off when she joined his ministry.

 

San Damiano Monastery in Assisi

San Damiano Monastery in Assisi

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Our final stop is just outside Assisi, the small and simple Church of San Damiano. This is where St. Francis had his calling; after hearing the crucifix telling him to ‘rebuild my church’, he did exactly that.  The original crucifix hangs inside the Basilica of Saint Claire.  St. Clare herself spent most of her life until she died there in 1253.

Important to know: To enter any of the churches, you will have to have your shoulders and knees covered, otherwise you will be refused entry!




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Assisi Tour Highlights:


Basilica of Santa Maria degli Angeli :: Basilica of St. Frances :: Piazza del Commune :: Basilica of Santa Chiara :: San Damiano Monastery

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Learn more about our popular Assisi Tour by visiting our website at www.StefanoRomeTours.com

Thank you for stopping by and reading our blog.

with love,

the Stefano Rome Tours team

 

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