July 28, 2012
Our last full day in Italy, the bus took us from Assisi to Orvieto where we stopped for a few hours to enjoy a bit of exploration and a meal before heading back to Rome for a final dinner and goodbye. Today was also the hottest day reaching up into the high 90s with a sun that baked you alive if you lingered from the shade too long.
All of the old Tuscany and Umbria cities are situated on hills, easier to defend. Orvieto takes that to an extreme. It is on the top of a hill so high and so steep we were required to take a funicular, or cable car, to the top. And from that funicular, a bus to take us even high to the Piazza del Duomo where the gorgeous gothic cathedral and San Brizio Chapel stand for all those daring enough to try the steep climb.
From the cathedral we made our way through the city to a restaurant for a lunch of wild boar and carbonara pasta. Absolutely delicious! Being a bit worn out from the traveling and the heat, we took our time wandering the back streets of Orvieto, exploring the more residential areas. Jasmine plants grew 9 feet tall, wrapping themselves around gutters and clinging to the stone of buildings.