Spoleto

Info | Getting There | Festival Venues | Accomodation in Spoleto

Info

Spoleto stands at an altitude of 396 mt. (1300 feet) along the Flaminia Road. Its dominant and strategic position determined its status of Caput Umbriae that lasted unceasingly from the 4th century B.C., when the city was fortified with the "Cyclopean walls", until the Unification of Italy, when the capital of the Region became Perugia.
Its economical development and the urban and architectonic transformation did not cease with the end of the Roman Empire, thanks to its Dukedom status, to the vitality maintained by the Flaminia Road and to the more or less beneficial interest of several emperors, like Teodorico, who reclaimed the surrounding valleys (at the beginning of the 6th century), Narsete who restored the town walls in 553 after Totila’s ransacking; and finally Barbarossa who razed the city in 1155 during the Communal age, determining a radical urban redevelopment.
In the 13th century, the arrival in town of several "mendicant" religious Orders determined a new urban expansion: Dominicans, Minor Franciscans, Augustinians, and Continent Tertiaries built several monumental compounds, while the Commune built a new town wall to embrace the urban growth. During the Renaissance and in the Baroque age the patrician buildings, with their closed courtyards and stables, enriched the town’s architecture.
After 1860, the transfer of the region’s capital to Perugia determined the economical decline of the city, which finally reflourished starting from the 50s, thanks to the growth of tourism and cultural institutions, among which the Festival dei Due Mondi, founded in 1958 by the musician Gian Carlo Menotti.

Getting There


Reaching the historic center of Spoleto has never been so easy!
Thanks to the parking lots of the alternative modes of transportation (Ponzianina, Posterna and SpoletoSfera) and the mechanized routes, the venues of the Festival are within everyone’s reach.
Accessing this page, you can download a detailed map of parking areas, view timetables and fares.
We look forward to seeing you in Spoleto!


How to get to Spoleto

Train
Direct connections with Rome via Orte, in 1h20 with Intercity trains and on average 1h45 with Regional trains. From Milan, it takes 6h10 with the direct Tacito Intercity and 5h15 via Florence with the Freccia Rossa /Red Arrow Trains.
Other travel times (approximate): Bologna 4h, Florence 3h15, Naples 3h, Turin 8h30, Venice 6h45.
Info and tickets: Trenitalia

Airplane
The nearest airport is Perugia "San Francesco d’Assisi". Connections with Spoleto are possible by taxi and car rental.
The best alternative is Roma Fiumicino, with train transfer to Spoleto (Leonardo Express for Roma Termini).



Car
Coming from the south, Spoleto is 60 km from the Orte exit of the A1 motorway: continue on the SS3 Flaminia towards Terni and the SS395 towards Foligno. The distance from Rome is about 150 km.
Coming from the north, you can exit the A1 motorway at Valdichiana and continue in the direction of Foligno on the E45, SS75 and SS3, for a total of about 115 km. The distance from Milan is approximately 510 km.
The Center of Spoleto does not allow circulation of private cars. There are several parking areas available in the immediate vicinity, with variable fees between 0.50 euro for 1 hour and 40 euros for monthly season tickets.

Taxi
Radio Taxi tel. +39 0743 225809

Bus Service
Spoleto is served by local transport lines and other municipalities in Umbria managed by SSIT: S.S. Flaminia Km 127,700, tel. +39 0743.212201.

Car and bicycle rental
Several car and bicycle rental companies are present on the territory

Parking areas for bus and camper van
Spoleto provides a number of areas for bus and camper van

Festival Venues

CATHEDRAL OF SANTA MARIA ASSUNTA 
The Cathedral’s construction began after 1155 - the year when Spoleto was devastated by Frederick Barbarossa’s imperial army – upon the site of the ancient Cathedral of Santa Maria del Vescovato, built between the eighth and ninth centuries.
The interior of the Cathedral, entirely rebuilt in the seventeenth century and further renovated by the architect Giuseppe Valadier in the eighteenth century, among other works, accomodates a bust of Urban VIII by Gian Lorenzo Bernini, and frescoes by Pinturicchio, Annibale Carracci and Filippo Lippi. The Cross painted by Alberto Sotio, among the best examples of Romanesque in Italy, is displayed in the left aisle. A letter written by Saint Francis is still preserved in the Chapel of the Relics.
 
TEATRO NUOVO GIAN CARLO MENOTTI 
Built in the nineteenth century upon the area of a religious complex which stood on Roman baths of the second century and designed by Ireneo Aleandri, its rich interior boasts four tiers of boxes and a gallery. The external niches house four statues of the seventeenth century, a gift from Maestro Gian Carlo Menotti, founder and first artistic director of Spoleto Festival dei 2Mondi. The theater also holds a concert hall designed by Aleandri as well, and the museum created by Adriano Belli - founder in 1947 of the Teatro Lirico Sperimentale - which testifies the intense theater activities of Spoleto, and preserves letters written by Rossini and Verdi.
 
TEATRO CAIO MELISSO SPAZIO FENDI 
After several transformations of its original wooden structure, this seventeenth-century theater of Spoleto - among the oldest Italian theaters with boxes - was rebuilt in the nineteenth century and, after long neglect, opened up again in the middle of the twentieth century. It is with the restoration of the two precious nineteenth century curtains and the scenic apparatus, that the complete renovation, carried out by the Carla Fendi Foundation, is inaugurated today.
 
TEATRO ROMANO 
Dating back to the first century AD, damaged and already restored in Roman times, it suffered collapses, overlaps and dismemberments before being excavated in the nineteenth century and restored starting from 1954. It accommodates beautiful outdoor performances of the Spoleto Festival dei 2Mondi. The adjacent monastery houses the National Archaeological Museum.
 
CHURCH OF SAN NICOLÓ
Built by the Augustinian friars on the area of San Massimo’s Church and the ancient San Nicolò di Bari Church, it was an important cultural center for centuries. Severely damaged by the earthquake of 1767 - with an almost total loss of the decorations and the many chapels built from the fourteenth to the seventeenth century – it was restored after more than two centuries. Today, the complex maintains a very large Great Hall covered with truss beams and a majestic umbrella vault opened by means of double lancet windows.
 
CHURCH OF SS. SIMONE AND GIUDA 
Built by the Franciscan friars in the thirteenth century, it underwent several renovations and was finally turned into a barrack after the unification of Italy, but then severely damaged. Afterwards the whole complex was used as a boarding school for orphans of state employees. The imposing façade of the Church retains the characteristics of the local Gothic, influenced by the Romanesque. Recently renovated, the complex now hosts events and shows.
 
ROCCA ALBORNOZIANA 
It is a massive fortress on the highest point of Spoleto, which in the fifth century BC was the site of the Acropolis, a worship center of which no trace remains following the medieval interventions. Built starting from 1359 to reaffirm the Pope’s authority in central Italy, it gets its name from the Spanish Cardinal Egidio Albornoz, sent to Italy by Pope Innocent VI. Residence of Papal governors, among others it hosted Julius II and Lucrezia Borgia, ruler of the Duchy from 1499 to 1502. Over the years it was enriched with decorations and frescoes, many of which were lost when the building was converted into a prison in 1817, whose function was maintained until 1982. After the end of a long process of recovery it now houses the National Museum of the Duchy of Spoleto, a multipurpose hall and an outdoor theater for 1,200 spectators. It is home to the European School of Book Restoration and a diagnostic laboratory for the restoration of cultural heritage. A park, a restaurant, a guesthouse and several shops complete the structure of the complex.
 
AUDITORIUM DELLA STELLA
Built in the eighteenth century upon Battista Dotti’s design and commonly called Santa Maria della Stella, the Church of the Saints Stefano and Tommaso is one of the most important examples of eighteenth-century Neoclassical architecture in towns. Recently used as an auditorium, it hosts important cultural events.
 
SALA FRAU 
Historic cinema of Spoleto, it has been recently renovated by the Italian firm Frau.
 
PALAZZO LETI SANSI 
Built in the seventeenth century upon the area once occupied by the Palazzo del Podestà, it has recently undergone a discerning restoration. The exterior features an elegantly carved portal and the interior the noble floor which preserves precious wood ceilings and a fully painted ballroom. The building – today one of the venues of the "Wines in the World" exhibition - hosts important exhibits during the Spoleto Festival dei 2Mondi.
PALAZZO RACANI ARRONI 
The palace, built in the early 1500s, originally belonged to the Racanis, illustrious family of Spoleto, which between the seventeenth and the eighteenth century was passed on to the Brancaleoni and Arroni families. It is located to the right of the entrance steps to Piazza del Duomo and has a gray façade embellished with beautiful graffito decorations, unfortunately very damaged, which were probably carried out by the local artist Giovanni da Spoleto within the first quarter of the 1500s.The palace, which internally preserves a courtyard with a beautiful nymph , represents one of the finest examples of Renaissance art in Spoleto.

PALAZZO DEL COMUNE 
The town hall palace, whose original nucleus dates back to the thirteenth century, is now visible in its eighteenth-century appearance, derived from numerous construction phases that were needed over the centuries due to frequent earthquakes and the unification with the surrounding buildings. The only thirteenth-century element still visible is the high tower which overlooks the rest of the structure, while the main body has two views: one on the north side, built between 1784 and 1786 by the architect Pietro Ferrari, and one on the south side, looking on to the Town Square, designed by the local architect Francesco Angelo Amadio known as "Lo Scheggino". This side ends with the neo-Gothic façade of the Brancaleoni Palace, which is the last amalgamation with the objective of enlarging the municipal seat, decorated in 1913 by the Spoleto artists Giuseppe Moscatelli and Benigno Peruzzi. The latter is also entrusted with the pictorial and stucco decoration of the majority of the interior rooms, recently renovated (2007), which are also home to valuable works of art from the former Municipal Art Gallery, including a large canvas by Guercino and two detached frescoes of the Renaissance painter Giovanni di Pietro called "Lo Spagna". Then there are the outstanding "Sala dei Duchi" whose ceiling is adorned with the idealized portraits of the most important Lombard duchies of Spoleto, the "Sala Caput Umbriae", whose decorative program is based on the exaltation of the most illustrious from Spoleto of various ages, and the chapel inside the palace dedicated to Saint Ponziano.

PALAZZO COLLICOLA VISUAL ARTS 
The building, belonging to the noble Collicola family, was built starting from 1717 upon a design by the Roman architect Sebastiano Cipriani. The palace retains its original architectural structure, characterized by a central body and two laterals of smaller dimensions which frame the internal courtyard, dominated by a front with three rows of arches. The interior is enriched by a gallery entirely decorated with exquisite eighteenth century tempera, situated on the noble floor, once frequented by illustrious figures who were guests of the palace, including Carlo di Borbone (the future King Charles III of Spain), Pope Pius VI and Carlo Emanuele, King of Sardinia. The valuable interior furnishings, the paintings and the tapestries belonging to the Collicola family were later auctioned off when the family became extinct. The palace was then purchased by the town hall and was seat of the State Institute of Art "Leoncillo Leonardi" for a long period, but today, after careful restoration, it is home to the remarkable collection of modern and contemporary art "Carandente Museum" when in the month of June 2010 the main noble floor was re-opened with part of the original furnishings, and the second floor intended for major exhibitions of contemporary art.

CASA MENOTTI
The sixteenth century palace that was the home of Maestro Gian Carlo Menotti for years, is now home to the Documentation Center of the Festival of Two Worlds. Casa Menotti collects audio, video and photographic material relative to the editions of the Festival from 1958, the year of its foundation, to this date, allowing the visitor to immerse himself in a sort of journey through time for the rediscovery of emotions and atmospheres related to the Festival of Two Worlds and the unforgettable Maestro.
 
PONTE DELLE TORRI
With spectacular views over the hills and the Tessino river, it is an aqueduct of amazing dimensions (230 meters long and 76 meters in height) made of local limestone and supported by nine pillars connected by pointed arches. The two central supports are hollow and contain old guard posts. Presumably completed in the thirteenth century, it still retains the long and picturesque walkway that connects Monteluco to the historic center of Spoleto.
 
BASILICA OF SAN SALVATORE
Originally dedicated to the martyrs of Spoleto, Concordio and Senzia, the Church is part of a series of early Christian basilicas built around Spoleto in the fourth and fifth centuries. The renovation of the seventh and eighth centuries gave the building the rare beauty that still characterizes it. With other important Italian monumental testimonies to the Longobard period, in 2011 it became part of UNESCO World Heritage Site.
 
CHURCH OF SANT’EUFEMIA
Located in the enclosure of the Bishop’s Palace, it was reconstructed in the Romanesque period and remedial measures were carried out in the nineteenth century. The interior has three naves, the only "women’s galleries" in Umbria and a substantial "frontal" (lining of the altar) in marble with bas-reliefs of the thirteenth century.

Accomodation in Spoleto

Spoleto offers a wide choice for all lodging categories: hotels up to 4 stars, including charming ancient palaces in the historic center, apartments and bed & breakfasts, farm holidays, camping sites.

Information and reservations:
CON SPOLETO - CONSORZIO OPERATORI TURISTICI
tel./fax +39 0743.220773
info@conspoleto.com

Information and reservations: