Italian Adventure begins in Assisi

There’s snow in ‘them hills! 
Ahh, after the beautiful sunset leaving Croatia the night before, I arrived on the early morning ferry to Ancona Italy in.. you guessed it, the rain.  I didn’t pull the camera out of the bag, no point and kept it dry.
So, this will be a non-motorcycley blog post, but I absolutely loved this town and wanted to share it anyway.  It rained hard all the way, which I grumbled about plenty as I was getting used to another countries road signs and language, but now that I am here and see snow, I better be quiet..
I had actually pre-booked a place to stay in between Ancona and Tuscany.. wasn’t sure where but when I looked at the map, I saw ‘Assisi’.  I remembered the story of St. Francis of Assisi and has been a long time favorite of mine due to his connection with the animals. So I decided to stop in this town, only because I liked the familiar name.  I had no idea what a little gem it would be!

But first I must find my house in the pouring rain.. I could not.. Mr. Zumo 550 couldn’t find it either.. with the confirmed address, it was still just showing an olive grove.  I stopped in to a restaurant.. Both owners were making calls for me and they were so wonderful but couldn’t work it out where exactly it is either!  The language was a real barrier.. lots of driving around in circles, and I finally found the right place tucked down a little steep lane and behind an old gate.  Was a bit scared to ride through, but it was fantastic once I got in.

Standing at their reception completely ruining their floors from all the water draining off of me, it got really loud outside.  We both stuck our heads out the door and that heavy rain had turned to a serious belting of ice. Amazing timing!  It’s like the heavens were busting to let loose this ice, but they wanted to make sure the crazy lady on a motorcycle is safely in the building first… must be a sign from St. Francis already!

The owners had me quickly put the bike under a veranda behind the hotel.  Whew!!  Tough day, once I had a room, I just stood under a hot running shower until feeling came back in my hands and feet.. !

The next day was super cold, but no rain, so I headed out to walk and explore Assisi.

It’s really beautiful here.. nice to see the green!  Just wish there was warm air to go with the great look!

The Basilica of San Francesco was truly an amazing place to visit.  It was actually built quickly for the time from 1228 to 1253! Compared to all the places I’ve seen that have taken 2-300 years to build, that is truly amazing! It’s rumored to be built so fast because of the great love the people had for St. Francis.

Europe is full of beautiful churches and I hate to admit this, but I can get easily either bored or completely overwhelmed by all the detail art and architecture for my brain to take in.. But not this one!  It is truly captivating and magnificent inside! And it’s full of what I just described above, so “shoulder shrug!”

This place felt really really special to me. As usual, we are not allowed to take photos inside to preserve the art, but I found a stock photo from travelitaly.com.. thanks!  As you probably know, the walls are painted with stories to follow for the large amount of illiterate people in that era.  And lucky for us, they did!  Similar to me in modern times with a magazine, I tend to turn each page just looking at pictures, before reading any articles.. shame on me and why do I admit these things out loud??

I just loved wandering around the Basilica.. there are lots of rooms and partly a museum which really helped me to step back and imagine what it was like during St. Francis’ time. But I decided to head out and explore the town a bit more.. It’s a very hilly town, with steep streets.. lots of great little shops.  Always wishing I could buy something, but never do as there is no way for me to carry it..

It’s a comfortable and unique town to wander through.. I could stay here for days.

But for now, it appears a gorgeous sunset is coming on, and the thoughts come again.. “How in the heck did I get here?”  Didn’t plan it, just liked the name of the town..and it’s perfect!

I went back to the Basilica… just wanted to go in one more time.  Didn’t expect the lights and to see it even more beautiful at night.  Interestingly, the color of dark blue sky matches the color of the blue ceilings inside.  hey! Magical place..

Goodnight Assisi.. next stop..  Tuscany!

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About kangamerican

Originally from America. Proud citizen of Australia. Currently riding my motorcycle around the world. 44 countries so far and counting. ;-) View all posts by kangamerican

7 responses to “Italian Adventure begins in Assisi

  • peterstpeter

    beautiful pictures! Have you discovered the gelato's yet? Infinite variety of flavours, but maybe not the best time of year..thxPeter

  • SonjaM

    Ah, Italy. Enjoy the scenery, the history, the architechture, and by all means the food.Tuscany is one of the best places on Earth. Make sure you visit Sienna, and don't forget Pisa.Wishing you continued safe travels.

  • Kangamerican

    Ah! Peter! You just reminded, I have gelato in the freezer here.. Pistachio and chocolate.. I will have some now! I had Amaretto flavor in Florence the other day. It was cold outside, but couldn't pass it up..

  • Kangamerican

    Thanks Sonja.. I've been to Pisa, and just went to Siena Wednesday on the Best of Tuscany tour with Artviva. I'm usually not a tour person, but this company and the guide were so fantastic, I'm going to do another one tomorrow to Fiesole. And if only I was lucky enough to NOT like Italian food..deary me.. ;-))) Thanks for writing and advice…Ciao!

  • Operator7G

    Don't forget. You may not have anywhere to carry things with you, but you can always ship it home! Sometimes you just come across something that is worth that effort and expense. 🙂

  • Dani

    Beautiful presentation! I have visited Assisi for the first time last Friday and I was charmed of its beauty! A lot of friends told me that it's worth seeing it and I looked at some pictures on the internet before going, but when I arrived there it was breathtaking. I did not expect to find so much beauty in one single place. Now that I see the photos that you took at night, I'm sorry that I could not stay longer :). But that is just a reason more to visit it again in the future. Enjoy the rest of the trip! Ciao!

  • Kangamerican

    Hi Dani, I usually don't like to go to the same place twice as there is so much of the world to see, but Assisi is one I would love to return to and stay or a while.. Ciao Ciao!!

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