What to do during your holiday in Umbria?
There are so many things to do that it’s hard to know where to start! Here are just a few ideas to give you a taste of Umbria, the local crafts & traditions going back over centuries…
Busatti, Anghiari, Umbrian linens
Founded in 1842 in Anghiari, Tuscany, the Busatti family have been making traditional Umbrian linens for over 150 years. They have stores in Anghiari, Città di Castello, Umbertide and Cortona.
Gorgeous textiles, hand made fabrics made out of precious fibres are used to create linens, curtains, towels, cushions, aprons, tablecloths, runners and napkins in a vast range of colours and designs. To complete the range, Busatti has also designed a collection of beautiful accessories in earthenware and glassware to match their fabrics and style.
If you visit the main shop in Anghiari you can ask to see the original looms, imported from the UK in the early 1900’s, and still used to weave the linens today. It’s really interesting and the noise when the looms are working is incredible! Afterwards, browse through the extensive selection of products in the store…
Ubaldo Grazia, Deruta, Majolica pottery
Famous all over the world, the elegant and colourful pottery known as majolica is predominantly made in Deruta, Umbria.
The majolica tradition in Deruta dates back to the 13th Century. The Grazia family began producing majolica in 1500 and there are archives to document this, together with the old kiln, still located within the town walls to prove this ancient family history. In the past, the most important clients were noble families, convents and the church, who began to use and sell majolica pottery to pilgrims visiting the tomb of Saint Francis of Assisi. Today, their biggest clients are Neiman Marcus, Tiffany and Williams Sonoma in the USA.
A private visit can be arranged to include a tour of the factory and see the potters at work. See the process from the raw clay through to the delicate and skilful painting of the precious china. Afterwards, wander through the extensive showrooms to choose your special piece of majolica.
Truffle Hunting, Città di Castello
The white truffle is highly prized for its wonderful flavour and aroma and is widely used in Umbrian cuisine. Find out where and how truffles grow by taking a trip with the Bianconi family to their chestnut woods just outside of Città di Castello. Afterwards, visit their fattoria to see how truffles are used in Umbrian cooking and sit down to a seven course meal based on truffle to taste these delicious woodland treats. There is chance to purchase truffles in the shop to take the flavour of Italy home with you…
Truffle hunting visits can be arranged on request and prior booking is advised.
Vin Santo Museum, Citerna
This incredibile, delicious, syrupy, amber nectar is still produced by traditional methods passed down through the centuries for us to enjoy today. Take a step back in time with a visit to the delightful home of Eugenio and find out how Vin Santo is made. The love and care that is taken to produce this fortified wine is evident and afterwards there is chance to savour the Vin Santo accompanied by home baked torcolo (Umbrian sponge cake) just right for dipping into the wine.
A private visit to the museum can be arranged on request.
There are a wealth of wonderful restaurants within a 15 minute drive of Villa Bastiola. To start with, the wonderful trattoria of Franco and Anna, I Mandriani, is just 3 minutes walk down the hill! Renowned for the best pizzas in the area! 10 minutes away are L’Archibugio, I Girasoli & Vecchio Granaio. In Città di Castello you can find Vineria del Vasaio, La Lea Trattoria, Locanda 800, Il Postale and many more. In Umbertide, Poggio Manente and La Rocca and over the hill near Mercatale is Da Gianna…