Spello is a stunningly picturesque Umbrian town located at the foot of Mount Subasio in the Valle Umbra, less than ten minutes by train from the more well-known town of Assisi.
The town is small and can easily be seen in a day, but it’s a lovely place to linger for a while and an ideal base for exploring other towns around Umbria.
Infloriata, Spello’s Famous Flower Festival
Spello is most well known for its flower festival, the Infloriata, which takes place in late spring.
However, if you’re not there during festival time, you can visit the small exhibition dedicated to this event in the Spello Town Hall.
The Infiorata dates back to at least 1602. It is a religious festival and a celebration of Corpus Christi.
The whole town, during this time, is decorated with carpets made entirely of flowers. It looks just incredible.
The next festival takes place from 10-11 June, 2023 in Spello.
Spello’s Floral Alleyways
But flowers are not just for the Corpus Christi procession. Throughout the year, many of Spello’s streets and balconies are filled with plants and flowers as the locals compete in the annual “Flowering Windows, Balconies and Alleys” competition promoted by the municipality.
Roaming The Back Streets Of Spello
When exploring Spello, be sure to wander off the main streets. There are all sorts of surprises – from incredible vistas, hidden chapels, ancient palazzos and cute boutiques.
The Roman Gates Of Spello
There are six Roman gates from which you can enter the town of Spello.
Most will arrive through Porta Consolare (Consular Gate). One of the more impressive gates with statues and a tower with an olive tree on top!
The Porta Venere with the two towers (Torri di Properzio) is another distinctive gate. The others are not quite so fancy but seeing as they have survived over centuries is a feat in itself.
There is a Roman arch at the top of the town, right next to a viewpoint of the Umbrian countryside.
Churches Of Spello Umbria
As you would expect from an Italian town, there are several churches. All look quite plain from the outside but, inside, visually stunning.
If you’re a fan of Renaissance art, then be sure to visit the Baglioni Chapel in the Collegiata di Santa Maria Maggiore. Here you will find the prized artwork of Pinturicchio, a local artist born in nearby Perugia but whose most well-known frescos are in this chapel.
There is a fee of three euros to enter the chapel.
The other churches and chapels in Spello are free to enter. The Church of St Andrea is worth a visit for its artwork and the mummified body of one of the first disciples of St Francis of Assisi.
The Museu Norberto is a lovely little art gallery dedicated to the works of Norberto Proietti. He was a well-known 20th-century Italian artist and sculptor who was born in Spello but passed away in 2009. His paintings are of medieval Umbrian landscapes with busy little friars are quite delightful. It’s free to enter.
Villa of Mosaics
Back in July 2005, during the construction of a car park just outside the gates of Spello, mosaic flooring from a Roman villa was unearthed.
Archaeological excavations continued from 2005 to 2016, and in that time, approximately 500 square metres of floor mosaics and Roman artefacts were discovered.
So now it’s a small museum, and if you like Roman mosaics, it’s certainly worth visiting.
For more details on the Villa of Mosaics, opening houses and entrance fees, check their website here.
Located just 15 minutes outside Spello is the Villa Fidelia. The gardens are open daily and free to enter.
I visited at the end of October 2022; the gardens looked a bit tired, the villa was very much closed up, and I was the only one there!
However, it’s a pleasant place to visit if you’re looking for a shady spot and keep an eye out for events, as sometimes concerts etc, are held in the gardens.
Walking back to Spello from Villa Fidelia, you will pass the small remains of what was once a Roman Amphitheater.
Enjoyable Walks From Spello, Umbria
If you are staying in Spello for a few days, there are a couple of enjoyable walks to do from the town.
Hiking the Spello-Collepino Roman Aqueduct Trail
There is a lovely five-kilometre hike along the Roman Aqueduct Trail, which starts just from the top of the town. The first four kilometres take you along a narrow path, through olive groves, with incredible countryside views.
The final 800-metre stretch up to Collepino is a bit steep, but it’s worth it when you finally reach this delightful little hamlet.
Don’t fancy walking all the way to Collepino, then bring a picnic, as there are picnic tables along the way with views of Spello and the Umbrian countryside.
Take A Stroll Through The Olive Groves
Exit the town from the top of Spello and follow the walking signs for Assisi. This route will take you along the Via degli Ulivi, a lovely stroll through the olive groves. Feeling energetic, stay on this path for 11 kilometres, and you’ll reach the famous town of Assisi.
Shopping in Spello
Spello has several charming shops where you can buy great souvenirs. The best things to buy in Spello are food souvenirs, especially their olive oils, and also the locally produced perfume Acqua di Spello.
A weekly market takes place every Wednesday morning in Plaza Kennedy near the Porta Consolare. Here you can find food, flowers, clothes and handbags.
Are you looking for a proper supermarket? There’s a Superconti supermarket just a few minutes from the main gate into Spello.
Learning Italian In Spello, Umbria
Planning on staying in Spello, Umbria for a while? Why not try out some Italian language classes? I recommend ENJOY IT. I took a few classes with Rachele while here, and she was great.
Easy Day Trips From Spello By Train
Just ten minutes by train from Spello to Assisi, this town is a must-see. Most well known as the birthplace of St Francis of Assisi, the town is a popular destination for pilgrims.
But you don’t need to be religious to enjoy this beautiful town.
Assisi is a few miles away from the station, so you will need to take bus C up to the town. You can buy the bus tickets at the train station, and the bus stop is right outside.
This town has so much history that I recommend taking a walking tour to ensure you don’t miss any highlights. And allow yourself plenty of time for lunch, as Assisi is a great foodie town.
Also, don’t miss the Basilica of Saint Mary of the Angels, just a short walk from Assisi train station. The basilica was built between 1569 and 1679. Inside the church is the Porziuncola, a 9th-century little church and the most sacred place for the Franciscans.
Recommended lunch spot: Enoteca Mazzini
Perugia, the capital of Umbria, is just thirty minutes away from Spello by train. From the train station, save your legs and hop on the mini metro that will take you up to the historic centre.
An excellent place to start exploring the city is from the Piazza IV Novembre, the main square in the centre of Perugia. This piazza is also the place where many of the walking tours of the city start too.
If your time is short in Perugia, consider taking this walking tour.
Perugia is also famous for Baci chocolate. I bought some as gifts, but weirdly, none made it home!
Recommended lunch spot: Locanda Del Bartoccio
Spoleto, a walled medieval hill town, is just 23 minutes away from Spello by train. This area has been inhabited since prehistoric times.
The town is built on a hillside. Overlooking the city is a medieval Rocca (a fortress) and to the side of the Rocca, spanning the deep gorge, is the Ponte delle Torri or Bridge of Towers. It’s a lovely town to explore, with many gorgeous churches and piazzas.
Spoleto’s System of Escalators
Unfortunately, I was unaware of Spoleto’s escalator system until I finally reached the top of the town on foot. If I was paying more attention, there are actual signs at the train station guiding you to the escalators.
So note if you are visiting Spoleto, and don’t fancy the steep climb to the top of the town, then there are escalators, which will transport you from the car parks at the foot of Spoleto right up to the castle.
Recommended lunch spot: Trattoria “La Torretta.”
It is just a few minutes by train from Spello to Foligno. Foligno is a lovely mix of old and not so old. It is just a short walk to reach the historic centre from the train station, and the town is flat.
The city’s main highlights include the Piazza della Repubblica and the adjoining Piazza Duomo.
Random fact: The first printed edition of Dante’s Divine Comedy was produced in Foligno in April 1472.
Recommended lunch spot: La Lanterna Dei Trinci
Easy Day Trips From Spello With A Car
If you’ve spent some time in Umbria, you will probably have seen and drunk the outstanding wine from the Montefalco region. Well, Montefalco is just a few miles away from Spello.
It’s easily accessible by car, just twenty minutes away but more challenging to get there by public transportation. If you don’t have a car, it’s possible to take a bus from Foligno Station, which is just one stop from Spello Station, but then you won’t be able to visit the wineries on the Sagrantino Wine Route.
However, Montefalco is a pretty town in itself to wander around, enjoy a good lunch and, of course, enjoy a glass of the local wine.
The town is located on top of a hill and has incredible views of the Umbrian countryside, which gives it the nickname of The Balcony-rail of Umbria.
Bevagna is a lovely little medieval town that’s also on the Sagrantino Wine Route. And if exploring all the charming hill towns of Umbria has left you exhausted, you’ll be pleased to know Bavagna is flat!!
Why not take a Montefalco and Bevagna Wine Tasting Full-Day Tour? I haven’t done this myself, but it has great reviews.
Easy Day Trip From Spello On Foot Or With A Car
Collepino is a picturesque hamlet located on the sunny side of Mount Subasio at an altitude of 600 metres. From here, there are some fantastic views of the Umbrian Countryside.
There’s a restaurant and a cafe in the village. Collepino is easily accessible by car from Spello, but if you have time, it’s a really lovely walk along the Roman Aqueduct Trail to there.
What To Eat In Spello
Spello is known for its high-quality olive oil, still cold-pressed as it has been for generations. Try it drizzled over a piece of grilled bread brushed with garlic (bruschetta).
Legumes such as lentils and chickpeas are also grown here, and many local dishes have these as their base.
Black truffles, Chianina beef, and wild boar are also on the menu.
And I recommend you try the local wines from nearby Montefalco.
Where To Eat In Spello, Umbria
There are many restaurants in town and to be honest, you won’t be disappointed with any of them. Here are a few of my favourites that I tried.
Great spot for lunch. Try the mixed bruschetta for starters and the tagliatelle with truffles. Wonderful wine selection.
Locanda in Urbe
A tiny little restaurant with just a couple of tables, and if you blink, you might just walk past without noticing it. This place serves delicious, simple Umbrian food. Try the spezzatino di cinghiale (wild boar stew) with bread.
La Cantina di Spello
Popular and deservedly so, so you should make a reservation, especially for the evening. I had a wonderful lunch here – an antipasto and a pasta dish. The waitress chose for me; both courses were terrific, and the wine was excellent.
Hostaria de Dada
Just good simple home-cooked food.
Trattoria Pizzeria Sapori Umbria
The Trattoria Pizzeria Sapori Umbria is in the main piazza with outdoor seating. They have very friendly staff and serve delicious pizzas, even at lunchtime.
Bar Giardino Bonci
For a coffee or light refreshment, head to Bar Giardino Bonci for a comfortable seat in a shady spot with a great view. You’re going for the view here, not the food!
Spello also has many deli shops where you can find cold cuts and cheeses. Perfect for a light lunch, picnic, or a souvenir of your time in Spello.
Where To Stay In Spello, Umbria
I was house-sitting and taking care of two cats whilst in Spello. However, on my first night in town, I stayed at the Albergo Il Cacciatore. This place was a lovely, reasonably priced guesthouse with stunning views overlooking the Umbrian countryside with a great terrace to enjoy breakfast.
How To Find A House Sit In Italy
Whenever I house sit or need to find a house sitter for my dog when I travel, I always use Trusted Housesitters.
How To Get To Spello, Umbria
The nearest airport is Perugia – budget airlines Ryan Air and Wizz Air fly here.
I flew into Rome and took the two-hour train journey from Rome Termini Station to Spello, Umbria.
Many trains stop at Spello, so that’s an easy way to reach this lovely little town. Spello train station is just a ten-minute walk from the historic centre.
If you prefer driving, check out these car rental deals for Italy.
Where To Park In Spello, Umbria
So, you decided to drive to Spello. Most of Spello is pedestrianised, so car parking is located outside the town walls.
Most car parks are within five minutes of the historic centre.
Check out these posts for other amazing places to visit around Italy.
Beautiful Towns and Villages in Umbria
Ortisei Italy – A Great Base For Exploring The Dolomites
Exploring Orvieto – A Fabulous And Easy Day Trip From Rome By Train
How To Spend One Full Day In Bologna
Why You Should Visit Ferrara – An Easy Day Trip From Bologna
Varenna- The Perfect Base For Exploring Lake Como
Two Days In Verona
How To Spend One Full Day (and a little bit) In Milan
Four Really Easy Day Trips From Rome By Train
Diary Of A Solo Traveller On A Viking Ocean Cruise From Barcelona To Rome
Top Tips For Visiting Pompeii
Disclaimer: Some of the links on this website are “affiliate links”, meaning that if you click on the link and make a purchase, I will receive a small commission at no extra cost. This helps me to keep my website running and continue to share my travelling knowledge with you. I thank you for using the links on my website.