Castel dell'Ovo in Naples, fortress & former royal residence

Gubbio – Oldest medieval town in Umbria
The Iguvine Tablets and Don Matteo

Gubbio, Umbria/Italy (2018) When it comes to medieval towns Italian's Umbria is the region to visit. There are many charming places with rich history and intact ancient buildings in Umbria but one of them truly stands out – Gubbio. This little ancient treasure, located about a half hour car ride northeast of Umbria's capital Perugia and centuries ago built beautifully into the lower slopes of Apennines mountain Mt. Ingino, was once the vital center of Umbria. Today Gubbio is the center of Umbria's tradition and folklore and proof that an ancient town can be kept well in shape and full of life. During my first walk through the town I found a little sign on an old stone house stating "Welcome to Gubbio, the most beautiful medieval town". I thought who ever had made this sign must have been very proud of the city and rightfully so, but maybe also a tiny bit overconfident. When I left Gubbio again after two days I remembered the sign, smiled and another thought came to mind: Good bye most beautiful medieval town I have seen so far, the sign was not so wrong.
Gubbio, the oldest medieval town in Umbria – The Iguvine Tablets
The very beautiful Gubbio is the oldest town in the Umbria region, dating back to the Pre Roman era. The hills of Mount Ingino were already occupied during the Bronze Age, the village then was known as Ikuvium (Iguvium). Gubbio, medieval Eugubium, grew on the ruins of Iguvium and the town is very proud of the proof of that. In 1441 a farmer had found seven bronze tablets on his fields, close to the Roman theatre of Iguvium, which later became the Iguvine Tablets (also Eugubian Tablets/Eugubine Tables). The tables, presented today in the local museum of Gubbio, are the earliest texts written in the original Umbrian alphabet, dating back to the 3rd century BC and represent the greatest original document from the ancient time. The texts on these tables were composed around the eighth century BC. By the way: the farmer who had found these artifacts had sold them to the city for two years worth of farming rights.

Ancient buildings and palaces as perfect backdrop for TV series "Don Matteo"
Gubbio's homes, houses and buildings as we can see them today were built in the 14th and 15th century. Some of the city's treasures are the Palazzo dei Consoli (1332–46), housing the city museum where the Iguvine Tables can be seen, the Palazzo Ducale and the beautiful cathedral, the Duomo di Gubbio. The town is also very proud of its active traditional and folklore life, it celebrates every year a medieval festival in May, the "Festa dei Ceri", the race of the candles, in which the whole city and its inhabitants is part of. Fans of the famous Italian actor Terence Hill might know Gubbio from the TV series "Don Matteo" in which he plays a Catholic priest in Gubbio who investigates local crime cases. 
Must-see sights in Gubbio
The Duomo (Cathedral) of Gubbio dates from the late 12 C. , sits on top of the hill and shines especially with its symmetry and beauty.

Palazzo dei Consoli of Gubbio, a Gothic building made of limestone from the 14th century. Located inside is an art gallery, archaeological museum and the civic museum which houses the Eugubine tablets, the seven bronze tables written in the ancient Umbrian language.

Gubbio Roman Theatre, built in the first century BC from local limestone. It was the second largest theatre in the Roman empire after the theatre of Marcellus in Rome. It is located below Gubbio centre and dates from the 1st century AD. Open-air performances are held there during summer.

Abbey of Sant' Ubaldo, on top of the mountain, can be reached by a unique funicular, the ride in the basket itself is already an adventure and the view of the city from up there beautiful. Among the sights inside the Basilica are the marble altar and the stained glass windows decorated with episodes of the life of the patron saint of Gubbio, whose body is shown in a crystal urn right over the altar. 

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