Umbria Blog | Visit Civic Museum in Montefalco

Montefalco “Mount of the Falcon” is a town of churches and convents. This hamlet is situated 11 km north west from Foligno and is perched on a hill top, boasting magnificent views over the green hills. Montefalco is also known as the balcony of Umbria. Outside the Gate of St. Augustine there’s ample parking. Enter the gate and proceed up the Corso G. Mameli with its small shops and restaurants to the Piazza del Comune.

The area around Montefalco is famous for its Sagrantino wine. This wine is made of 100% Sagrantino grapes which have been cultivated for centuries on the hills of Umbria. Following the wine route “Strada del Sagrantino” one can stop by some local wineries to  taste and buy the local wines.

Besides the famous Sagrantino wine the medieval walled town offers a mix of picturesque streets and historic churches and museums. A must see in Montefalco is the museum in the Chiesa di San Francesco, the church of Saint Francis. You can reach this museum by walking down from the main piazza to the Via Ringhiera Umbra. This museum is divided into three sections: the church, the gallery and the crypt.

The church houses important works of the Renaissance painter of Florence Benozzo Gozzoli, il Perugino, Melanzio and some other painters. The famous painter Gozzoli, painted in the apse of the church brightly coloured frescoes all on the life of San Francesco. These frescoes in the chapel are of great importance and are comparable with the cycle by Giotto in the church of Saint Francis of Assisi.

Pietro Vannucci, also known as Il Perugino, made two master pieces in the church: the “Nativity scene” and the “Annunciation with the Eternal in glory between angels”. Tiberio d’Assisi instead painted the frescoes “Madonna and Child with saints”  and “The descriptive Madonna del Soccorso”. All are interesting works by artists known all over the world.

Video Civic Museum Montefalco.

In the basement of the church is  a medieval wine cellar where monks brought their locally grapes, pressed them in wine presses and prepared wine for local consumption.

The gallery contains important works and wooden sculptures of the thirteenth and fifteenth centuries.

The entrance for this museum is 7,00 Euro. Children from 6 to 14 years pay 2,00 Euro each and children under 6 years are free. With your entrance ticket you can visit other musea in Umbria for free. This offer is valid for two weeks after the date of your visit to the Civic Museum in Montefalco. For more information visit this website: Umbria Terre Musei.

From Montefalco you can head up to the medieval walled town of Bevagna. The distance is about 8 km, a 10 minutes drive.

Ristorante della Mura is situated on the Piazza Garibaldi 14a in the centre of Bevagna. In this restaurant they serve traditional local Umbrian dishes. Really recommended!

Gaite Market in Bevagna

Last year I went to the Gaite Market, “Mercato delle Gaite” in Bevagna. It is a fantastic medieval feast, a revival of daily life in the Middle Ages. I loved it so much, I had to go again this year.

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The medieval village of Bevagna is the perfect background for the Mercato delle Gaite. Its four districts are called “Gaite”: Gaita San Giovanni, Gaita San Pietro, Gaita Santa Maria and Gaita San Giorgio.

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The Mercato delle Gaite takes place every year during the last week of June. You can admire old costumes, markets and typical workshops. Taverns -restaurants- offer many dishes of medieval origin. It is a lovely experience eating in a Taverna. I’ve never eaten in a Taverna in Bevagna before, but in Narni I did during the medieval event Corsa all’Anello.

I have good memories of the Gaite Market, as you can see from the pictures on our blog of this year and last year. I saw the “same” locals dressed in medieval clothes. Some faces looked familiar to me, but I don’t know them personally. Only Giacomo from Gualdo Tadino. He makes and sells earrings, necklaces and bracelets. You can find him every year in the district “Gaita San Giorgio”.

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Steve McCurry the famous photographer and best known for his photograph “Afghan girl”, made some beautiful photographs of the Umbrian region. He was a special host at the Gaite Market and made some amazing pictures of this medieval event. Last year in Perugia I went to the exhibition Sensational Umbria of Steve McCurry. Magnificent!

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– Posted by Sylvia van der Male – 

Mercato delle Gaite in Bevagna Umbria

Such e beautiful experience! I loved it..

Mercato delle Gaite 19-29 June 2014

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posted by Sylvia van der Male