Monte Subasio – Paradiso Ceramics Australia | Handmade in Italy


Monte Subasio

Monte Subasio in Umbria is popular with hikers and paragliders. The ancient towns of Assisi and Spello are built on its lower slopes. From its summit it offers spectacular views of Assisi below, the wide Spoleto valley to the south and the Appenine mountains to the north. 

Assisi is nestled on the foothills of Monte Subasio in Umbria, Italy

From 'our' house in Umbria, we look across to the northern face of Monte Subasio and love its many moods.

Monte Subasio from our house in Paradiso, Umbria, Italy.
Monte Subasio from Paradiso in Spring, Umbria.

The upstairs bedroom window perfectly frames the view across the valley to Subasio. 

View of Mt Subasio from Paradiso bedroom window.

Half way up the mountain and tucked in the forest is the sanctuary of Eremo della Carceri. In the 13th century, Saint Francis of Assisi and his followers would often come to this place to pray. The stone hermitage and extensive woodland paths draw pilgrims from all around the world. 

Eremo della Carceri hermitage in the forest on Monte Subasio, Umbria

It is one of our favourite places to visit, especially early in the morning before busloads of tourists arrive. It is truly a sacred space.

Eremo della Carceri hermitage has many sacred spaces to sit and pray, Monte Subasio, Italy.

In spring and summer, horses and donkeys graze on Monte Subasio's slopes (the friendly ones like a pat), and orchids, crocuses and other wildflowers bloom among the grass and moss.

Horses and donkeys graze on the high slopes of Monte Subasio, Umbria, Italy.
Jan pats a donkey on Mt Subasio, Umbria.

Locals like to escape the summer heat on Monte Subasio. One day we headed to our favourite picnic spot with friends only to find that it was already occupied. Back in the car, we looked for another place to have our picnic.

We turned a corner to find, to our surprise, the bare grassy slope was strewn with bodies of all shapes and sizes, stripped down to their bathers, lying down or sitting on deck chairs working on their tan. Quite a shock for us Australians who think of sunbathing by the sea, not at the top of a mountain!

Sunbathers on the top of Monte Subasio, Umbria.

Autumn is when you see cars parked alongside the road and people stomping across the slopes, clutching wicker baskets, scanning the fields for mushrooms.

The long and winding drive from Spello to Assisi over the 1300m high mountain is something we enjoy each time we visit. During one excursion over the mountain in October, we encountered snow. Driving was a bit hazardous as we were not expecting the slippery conditions on dirt roads that resemble creek beds in parts.

Snow on distant alp in the Appenine mountains from Monte Subasio, Umbria.

We have yet to visit Umbria in winter when the mountain is covered with snow and the roads are impassable. We hope one day to see it in its wintry finery.

Leave a comment

Please note, comments must be approved before they are published