Territorio | PARADISO Albergo & Ristorante
Spoleto, an ancient city, stands at the foot of Monteluco, a place of ancient hermitages.
Spoleto, an ancient city, stands at the foot of Monteluco, a place of ancient hermitages.
It was a flourishing Roman municipality, whose signs are still evident in the Arch of Drusus and Germanicus (23 AD), in the Roman Theater (1st century AD) and in the Roman House.
From the fourth century, it became an episcopal seat developing a solid ecclesiastical organization.
The city then played a fundamental political role: with the arrival of the Lombards in Italy Spoleto became the capital of the Lombard Duchy (of Spoleto) placed under the control of the Duke Faroaldo.
The Duchy survived long after the fall of the Lombard Kingdom (774), passing under the control of the Franks first and then the papal nobility, until 1198.
Together with the Duchy of Benevento, it constituted the Langobardia Minor.
In the following period, Spoleto was annexed to the Papal State, later becoming a province.

In the fourteenth century, Pope Innocent VI had a system of fortifications built to strengthen militarily and make the authority of the Church more visible in the territories of central Italy, in view of the imminent return of the papal seat to Rome after the seventy years of stay in Avignon.
The main bulwark of this system of fortifications was represented by the Rocca di Spoleto, erected between 1363 and 1367 by the Spanish Cardinal Egidio Albornoz, under the direction of the Eugubino architect Matteo Gattaponi.
The latter wisely designed a building that could be both a solid and impressive fortress, but also an elegant and comfortable residence, for this purpose it was in fact used by many famous guests.

The last period of great prestige came when Spoleto became the capital of the Trasimeno department, from Rieti to Perugia, between 1808 and 1815, during the Napoleonic Empire.

After the Second World War, the crisis of lignite mines and the crisis of agricultural production triggered the migration of the Italian population abroad.
To re-emerge from the crisis and to redeem the cultural importance of a city like Spoleto, it began to give life to important cultural events that allowed its development and conferred and still confer prestige to the city today.
In 1947 the Experimental Lyrical Theater was founded, in 1952 the Italian Center of Studies on the High Middle Ages was inaugurated and in 1958 the first edition of the Festival dei Due Mondi took place.
Thanks to these events, the city has won a role of international importance in the artistic and cultural world and related activities have assumed a primary role in the local economy.
Monteluco contains in itself millennia of religious history, its geographical peculiarities, from the richness of the wooded mantle to the widespread presence of the waters to the very nature of the soil, have elected it to privileged space for the life of prayer and meditation.
Made inviolable in the pagan era by Lex Spoletina, the wood of Monteluco becomes home, starting from the fifth century, one of the largest hermit movements of the time whose birth is to be related to the figure of St. Isaac, arrived from Syria . Numerous monks follows his example and soon the mountain becomes the seat of an immense monastery where life is carried out in isolated cells or caves dug into the rock.
In Monteluco, the Abbey of San Giuliano blooms, the first point of reference for the vast eremitical colony, later transformed into a congregation, and subsequently launched to an inexorable process of secularization.
Also according to the tradition of the Order, St. Francis founded in 1218 a primitive cenacle on Monteluco, second in order of the city of Sant'Apollinare. And the Franciscans themselves were the protagonists of the last tremors of mysticism when, at the end of the eighteenth century, the blessed Leopoldo da Gaiche tried to drive away the French troops who climbed the mountain to plant the tree of freedom.

Monteluco contains millennia of religious history. The name of the village derives from the Latin term lucus, or Bosco Sacro, which bears witness to the religious importance of this place since ancient times. Lucus was considered by the Romans to be home to deities and superhuman powers, mostly related to nature, such woods were usually provided with a celebratory altar, as in the case of Monteluco.
At the entrance to the forest, the so-called Lex spoletina was placed in Roman times (currently the original copy is exhibited at the National Archaeological Museum of Spoleto), the first example of forest rule composed of archaic Latin inscriptions engraved on stone, dating back to the late 3rd century BC , which establish the penalties for the desecration of the sacred wood dedicated to Jupiter.

Around the 5th century, Monteluco became the seat of one of the largest eremitical movements of the time: a group of eastern hermit monks (among whom St. Julian † 302) led by St. Isaac of Antioch, who later became St. Isaac of Monteluco, a religious of origin. Syrian, they founded a colony on the mountain, living in caves and forbidding access to women.
Subsequently the abbey of San Giuliano is erected in Monteluco, the first central point of reference for the vast eremitical colony, later transformed into a congregation.

Even St. Francis, according to the tradition of the Order, founded in Monteluco in 1218 the chapel of Santa Caterina, a primitive cenacle at the limits of the sacred wood.
In 1788, the cenacle of San Francesco was chosen by Leopoldo da Gaiche as a spiritual retreat of strict observance and was solemnly inaugurated on 1 November. It was then suppressed by the Napoleonic troops in 1809; Fra Leopoldo himself attempted to drive away the French troops from the mountain to plant the tree of liberty.

With the Napoleonic occupation, the isolation ended and since then the access is open to everyone.

In 1556, the artist Michelangelo stayed briefly in those places to restore himself.


The Montagna Spoletina, of which Monteluco forms the northern end at 780 m s.l.m, is a calcareous ridge stretched from north to south, covering about 7,000 hectares, between the Flaminia State Road and the Nera Valley. The area is mostly occupied by deciduous forests and evergreen sclerophyllous: formations of black hornbeam and flowering ash, oak oak woods, chestnut woods, some beech nucleus at the highest altitudes, pine trees in Aleppo pine and holm oak. Among the latter, the secular one of Monteluco stands out. The composition of the woods is very varied; in addition to the dominant tree species, maples, turkey oaks, white hornbeams, hazelnuts, apple trees and wild cherries, rowanberries, labyrinths, strawberry trees and many shrubs such as viburnum, fillirea, alaterno, heather multiflora, dogwood, sanguinello, hawthorn, euonymus, juniper, odorous broom and bramble. In some stations, there are rare rate and holly. On some sunny sides, there are olive groves and around the small settlements, even in the mountains, are located arable land and meadows. The fauna of the Spoletina Mountain is rich and diversified, with at least 134 species of vertebrates present: 10 of amphibians, 10 of reptiles, 89 of nesting and / or wintering birds (the nesting are 79) and 25 of mammals. 37% of these animals are considered of great scientific and conservation value, because they are rare and / or often threatened also at national and European level.

The importance of the environmental characteristics of Monteluco and of the whole of the Spoleto Mountains is sanctioned, among other things, by the identification, in accordance with EEC directives and the Bioitaly Project, of the 'site of Community interest' (SCI) Monteluco di Spoleto and special protection zone '(ZPS) Lower Valnerina: Monte Fionchi Marmore Falls.

Monteluco is also part of the 'Natura 2000 Sites' of the municipality of Spoleto, which aims to catalog the rich natural heritage of the Municipality of Spoleto.
The sacred wood of Monteluco
it is characterized by the presence of evergreen holm oak, a quite rare plant in places so distant from the sea or lakes.
The metallic cross
at the top of the mountain, near the antennas, is one of the distinctive symbols of Spoleto, especially at night when it is illuminated. It can be reached at the base along a short path, that starts from one of the last hairpin bends of the road to Monteluco.
The cave of St. Anthony of Padua
reachable through the pedestrian path that winds through the woods behind the Franciscan sanctuary.
The cave of Francesco Beccaria
'Franciscus de Papia', that is Francesco da Pavia, born Antonio Beccaria. He was born between 1413 and 1418, died according to tradition on August 16, 1454.
He was seized by the plague during an epidemic that devastated Umbria, but died by his intercession, the region was freed from the disease. In 1640, his remains were exhibited in the church of S. Francesco di Monteluco.
The Sanctuary of San Francesco
or Franciscan Hermitage (1218) has been enlarged several times between the fifteenth and the eighteenth century, but preserves the well, the chapel-oratory and seven small cells; inside the chapel there are the remains of Blessed Leopoldo da Gaiche and his other relics. Holy Masses and ceremonies are regularly celebrated. It accommodates young people who aspire to enter the Order of Friars Minor, who are carrying out the proband year here.
The Belvedere
where on the plaque, there is the quotation of Saint Francis who, observing from above the mosaic of cultivated fields of the Valle Spoletana, exclaimed: «Nil iucundius I saw the meale of Spoleto - I have not seen anything more beautiful than my Spoleto valley) »
Reproduction of the Lex Luci Spoletina
first example of forest rule of Roman origin engraved on a stone memorial stone. The two original inscriptions engraved on parallelepiped stones were both discovered by Giuseppe Sordini, Spoleto archaeologist (1853-1914), in 1876 and in 1913, currently preserved in the Archaeological Museum of Spoleto.
The small cemetery of Monteluco
in which an illustrious Italian artist, painter, illustrator and set designer, Domenico Gnoli (1933-1970) is buried.
Giro dei condotti
it is a pedestrian path that starts from the Fortilizio dei Mulini, runs along the steep slopes of Monteluco at an altitude of 440 meters and reaches the former monastery of Santa Maria inter Angelos (locally called Le Palazze), then descend in the lower part of the city of Spoleto; or, deviating after the Sanguineto bridge, you can reach the top of the mountain and continue to Valnerina. The name derives from the fact that its path traces that of the old pipelines of the ancient Cortaccione aqueduct leading to the Ponte delle Torri.
Abbey of San Giuliano (XII century)
Romanesque, erected on remains dating back to the 5th century. The interior has three naves, with semicircular apses and a crypt, and is decorated with paintings dating back to 1400.
The Path of San Francesco
Monteluco is fully part of the St Francis Way, a timeless journey through the hermitages, the sanctuaries, the ancient forests and the medieval cities that inspired the love of the Saint of Assisi for nature and all its creatures.
In 1218, in fact, the Saint obtained from the hermit monks of Monteluco the chapel of Santa Caterina, where today stands the Franciscan Sanctuary on the summit of the homonymous mountain, surrounded and almost hidden by a dense thicket of ancient holm oaks.
The church, dedicated to St. Francis and St. Catherine, still retains the tiny cells and the stone used by the saint as a bed. In the 'sacred wood' it is still possible to visit the caves where some saints have stayed.
Many religious retired to the mountain to live the Rule more spiritually: especially the Blessed Francis of Pavia, who died here on August 16, 1454; the Blessed Egidio of Assisi, the Blessed Paoluccio Trinci, San Bernardino of Siena, San Bonaventura, Saint Anthony of Padua. The archbishop of Spoleto Giovanni Maria Mastai-Ferretti, future Pope Pius IX, was part of the fraternity of the Third Franciscan Order of Monteluco.

The Sanctuary is open all year round (9.00 / 12.00 - 15.00 / 18.00).


The Via di Francesco is an itinerary on foot, by bicycle and on horseback that connects some places that testify to the life and preaching of the Saint of Assisi; a journey of pilgrimage, which intends to revive the Franciscan experience in the lands that the Poverello has trod in his itineraries.
Precisely in the adherence to the story of Francis, the Way finds its plausibility and its charm: the landscapes on which the pilgrim's eye rests are the same ones that have rejoiced the simple heart of Francis; the places of the stage retain the memory of his words and his deeds.

In spite of everything, Umbria has remained the land of Francis, nourished by a spirituality that speaks of love for little things, of respect and gratitude for creation, of generous welcome of the other, whoever he may be.
Walking along the Way of Francis, constitutes an authentic journey of the spirit, which meets the desire of man, even of today's man, to seek in the depths of himself the meaning of his own existence.
The figure of Francis, who hovers in Assisi, the destination of the journey, accompanies in reality throughout the journey, speaking to the mind and heart of the traveler of the possibility of leading daily life in full harmony with the world, with man and with God.
It is an art of precious living, which is the most authentic fruit of the journey to Assisi: a gift that the Umbria of Francis is capable of doing to the pilgrim, as well as to each person who approaches them with an open mind.

Via di Francesco - Via del Sud from Rome to Assisi
Stage 10 - From Ceselli to Spoleto

From Ceselli to Spoleto, uphill passing from the Hermitage of Monteluco and walking in the Sacred Grove.
A challenging stage of 17 km of the most beautiful of the Via di San Francesco.
From the narrow and green Valle del Fiume Nera one passes to the sunny Spoleto valley, to reach Spoleto, city of art with its magnificent cathedral, where the autograph letter of Francesco d'Assisi is preserved.
It starts from Ceselli and after crossing the Valley of Pontuglia, begins a long and demanding climb that in about 8 km will lead to the Valico di Castelmonte. In some parts the slope is significant and you must always proceed with a slow and steady pace, enjoying the beauty of the woods and the splendid views of the Valle del Nera.
You cross the alleys of the ghost town of Sensati.
The arrival in the Sacred Wood of Monteluco, where the Hermitage of San Francesco is, is an anticipation of the joy of coming to Assisi. The place is so full of charm that it deserves a pause for reflection, and a visit to the scabre cells of the convent. From here to Spoleto we proceed downhill.
The path is dotted with pretty shrines and numerous hermitages, originally inhabited by Syrian hermits: the Hermitage of San Girolamo, the Hermitage of the Graces, the Church of San Paolo Protoeremita. The descent is sometimes steep on large steps.
At the end, you reach the Ponte delle Torri, which connects the city to its forest, and you almost have a sense of vertigo in crossing it.
At the foot of the Rocca Albornoziana, in a few steps you reach the Cathedral of Spoleto, with its magnificent façade, here one of the very rare autograph letters of San Francesco is preserved.
The city, formerly the capital of the Longobard Duchy, deserves a visit for the rich heritage of art and monuments.

Festival of the Two Worlds
The Festival dei Due Mondi, also known as Spoleto Festival, is an international event of music, art, culture and entertainment that takes place annually in the city of Spoleto, since 1958.Founder of the Festival dei Due Mondi di Spoleto was the master composer Gian Carlo Menotti (who died in 2007), who established the event in 1958. From the mid-nineties until 2007, the artistic director was the son Francis Menotti. Before him, we remember the directions of Romolo Valli and Raffaello De Banfield. The current artistic director is Maestro Giorgio Ferrara.
Menotti chose Spoleto as the venue of the Festival for various reasons: the size of a historic center (on a human scale), the presence of the two Italian theaters, the discovery of a Roman theater and above all the presence of Piazza Duomo, architecturally a outdoor theater silent and unchanged over time.

The artists and characters who took part in it belong to the field of prose, lyric, dance, marionette art, oratory art, music, cinema and painting. In the eighties, the medical-scientific review Spoletoscienza was also established, at which conferences scientists and researchers take part.

At the beginning of the 2000s, internal frictions to financial and administrative management are maturing.

On June 29, 2007, the fiftieth edition of the Festival kicked off, the first without the presence of the founder Gian Carlo Menotti, who died a few months earlier: his opera 'Maria Golovin' was staged for the occasion.

In autumn 2007, the minister of cultural heritage in charge, Francesco Rutelli, called upon to find a solution to the long-standing internal friction of the management of the festival machine, assigning Giorgio Ferrara the task of relaunching the event and appointing him artistic director.

Period: June-July
Organization: Festival dei Due Mondi Foundation
Website: http://www.festivaldispoleto.com/
International Dance Week
The only Italian event to be part of the International Federation Ballet Competition and that for 16 years brings in the City a total of 7 thousand young dancers. Under the General Management of Paolo Boncompagni, the Artistic Direction of Irina Kashkova and the Honorary Presidency of Alberto Testa, the International Dance Competition Spoleto has become the unmissable choreutical event to which, in every spring, they participate, coming from every part of the world, young dancers in search of excellence.

Period: March-April
Organization: EventArt Cultural Association
Website: www.settimanainternazionaledelladanza.it
Color Spoleto
COLORmob is a fun and unforgettable party. The event was born to encourage and promote equality and tolerance, bringing people closer to each other through joy.
What makes it special is the explosion of colors that invest the participants in the event: people paint with different colors and throw colored powders into the air to express their freedom and give color to the daily routine. Unfortunately, inequality is still enormously spread in many parts of the world, Spoleto in color is an event that tries to fight such injustices, allowing to take a step back to everyday life to make room for peace and harmony.

Period: April-May
Organization: Spoleto color association
Website: www.spoletoacolori.com
Week of the study on the middle ages
The Italian Center for Early Middle Ages Foundation in Spoleto has represented, and continues to represent, a strongly innovative factor in the field of medieval world research, an opportunity for meeting and scientific debate at the highest level. It is, in essence, not only a noble cultural institution that prints books on the Middle Ages, but also an extraordinary scientific enterprise known all over the world. The Italian Center for Early Medieval Studies in Spoleto was founded on 7 June 1952 on the initiative of prof. Giuseppe Ermini, Rector of the University of Perugia, then Minister of Education.

Among the various statutory purposes of the Italian Center for Early Middle Ages Foundation, conference activity is the most important and significant.
The weeks of study that take place in Spoleto from Easter Thursday to the following Wednesday and national and international conferences, that are organized in places particularly suited for historical and artistic references and have always characterized medieval historiography as the expression of true scientific comparison and diversity of interests and methodological approaches.

Period: March-April
Organization: Italian Center for Studies on the Early Middle Ages Foundation
Website: www.cisam.org
Spoleto Pianistico Festival
Period: May
Organization: Associazione Culturale Musici Artis Umbria
Website: www.festivalpianisticodispoleto.com
Concerting Season of the cultural association 'L'Orfeo' of Spoleto
Period: April-December
Organization: Cultural Association L'Orfeo
Website: www.orfeoweb.com
La MaMa Spoleto Open
Period: June-September
Organization: La MaMa Spoleto Open
Website: www.lamamaspoletopen.net
Instruments & Music Festival
Strumenti & Musica Festival is an event that is articulated in a series of musical proposals with a high cultural value.
In particular, the Italian Accordion Culture Association, a member of the Confédération Internationale des Accordéonistes (CIA) member of UNESCO, is the institution set up to select the best Italian accordionists.
The winners, selected by an international jury composed of teachers, concert performers and composers, are given the opportunity to participate in the world finals that are assigned annually in the various intercontinental stages.
The competition is also enriched by the presence of candidates from all over the world who contribute, with skill and professionalism, to enhance this great event.
The city of Spoleto, already home to great events, lends itself also thanks to its beautiful buildings and beautiful theaters, to the evocative concerts offered by the most famous musicians who annually participate in the event.

Period: November
Organization: Associazione Culturale Italian Accordion Culture
Website: www.strumentiemusica.com
Spoleto Tipica
Show market of local products that takes place in the city center of Spoleto.

Period: September
Organization: Municipality of Spoleto
Theater season of the experimental Lyrical theater of Spoleto 'A. Belli'
Period: September-October
Organization: Institution A. Belli di Spoleto Experimental Opera Theater
Website: www.tls-belli.it
Open Frants
Frantoi Aperti is an event spread throughout the Umbria region that includes weekends in the countryside, to visit the minor Umbria, the medieval villages, the mills, farms, small museums.
It is an opportunity to participate in concerts of traditional music in the squares, to involve children and adults in popular games, to learn to discover and recognize the true flavor of the extra virgin olive oil DOP Umbria and other products of the Umbrian land, to do walks through the olive groves passing through castles, abbeys, places of Francesco, farms, oil mills, ancient olive trees, watching popular re-enactments, looking for truffles.
It is also a good opportunity to bring home a little 'of Umbria, buying a stock of quality extra virgin olive oil Dop Umbria.

Period: November-December
Organization: Road Oil Dop Umbria / Municipality of Spoleto
Website: www.frantoiaperti.net
Family Theater
Period: December-March
Organization: Municipality of Spoleto
Website: http://www.comunespoleto.gov.it/teatro-famiglia/
”Il paradiso ritrovato”
Sono stato in questo Hotel da ragazzino e sono ritornato dopo trent'anni con la mia famiglia. Ho ritrovato lo stesso clima di cordialità e professionalità. Abbiamo trascorso 10 giorni di relax totale coccolati da tutto lo staff. Location stupenda e cucina ottima. Speriamo di potere ritornare.
Antonino M. Tripadvisor
”Relax immersi nella natura”
Personale estremamente gentile e disponibile. Struttura pulita, ordinata e ben organizzata. La struttura si trova immersa in uno splendido boschetto, in un atmosfera magica e rilassante. La cucina presso il ristorante interno è ottima e di qualità.
Debora Booking.com
”Professionalità e semplicità”
Weekend in moto, posto tranquillo,ottimo punto di partenza per visitare la meravigliosa Umbria. Gentilezza, semplicità , molta sostanza e pochi fronzoli.Se in futuro tornerò nei paraggi, hotel assolutamente da tornarci.
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