After a relaxing Saturday, we were ready for an adventure, so on Sunday we headed out to an old walled city called Perugia. Perugia is located in Umbria, a small province East of Tuscany. The outskirts of Perugia are industrial, developed, and not very appealing, but once you reach the city center, it almost looks like the place time forgot. I say almost, because amidst the wonderful ancient arches, worn cobbled streets, and beautiful buildings are shops. Lots and lots of shops.
We had read that there was a park with old Roman ruins, but we walked around and around and could not find it. Finally, we found a cave like entrance on the side of a hill, and decided to just go inside and check it out.
As luck would have it, this was the “park”! We had stumbled up an old underground street system! It was amazing, arches and iron fixtures jetting out of the wall to hold torches. The streets wound around and around. In ancient times, they provided protection from war, as the people of Perugia could carry on with life, underground! We imagined the streets bustling with shops and people as we rounded the corner…
It turns out that Perugia was hosting the Umbrian Wine Festival in the very underground streets that we stumbled upon. We each paid 10, and tasted wines from all over Umbria. We had a perfect chance to practice our Italian and the wine makers got to practice their English :)
It was a very lucky and happy find.