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Perugia is a city in the Italian region of Umbria. It has an important university that attracts many foreign students, is a major center of medieval art, has a stunningly beautiful central area and is home of the Umbria Jazz Festival. The city is a major producer of chocolates.
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Points of Interest in Perugia
- Underground Perugia. The escalators from the lower town lead up through the remains of Rocca Paolina which was a 16th-century fortress. This was built on top of medieval streets, which were used as foundations, and before coming out into daylight at Piazza Italia you go through some of these medieval streets covered with brick ceilings when the fortress was built. Little now remains of the fortress itself.
- Porta Marzia (Marzia Gate). This is an Etruscan city gate built in the Third Century BC and much later incorporated into the city walls. It is close to the remains of the Paolina Fortress.
- Fontana Maggiore. This large medieval fountain is found between the cathedral and the Palazzo dei Priori. It was made between 1277 and 1278 by Nicola and Giovanni Pisano as part of Perugia's celebrations of its independence. On the twenty-five sides of the basin are sculptures representing prophets and saints, the work of the seasons, signs of the zodiac, Bible scenes and events from Roman history.
- Cathedral of San Lorenzo. This has an unusual layout for Italian churches in that the side rather than the front entrance faces the main square. There have been many churches on the site: this one was last worked on around 1490. But finished it was not, as can be clearly seen from the unfinished façade facing the square. This side includes the Loggia di Braccio, an early Renaissance structure. Under it a section of Roman wall and the basement of the old bell tower can be seen. Also found here is the 1264 Pietra della Giustizia ("Justice Stone") with which Perugia announced that it had repaid its public debt, a not inconsiderable feat. Also noteworthy is the external pulpit from which Saint Bernardine of Siena, a virulently anti-homosexual priest, would preach.
- Palazzo dei Priori (Town Hall) (Opposite the side of the cathedral, with its main entrance on Corso Vannucci). This is a large building in Italian Gothic style built in the early 1300s. On the side facing the piazza are a griffin, the emblem of Perugia, a 14th century bronze lion, and some chains, from where the keys of Siena were displayed after victory over the Sienese in 1358. Inside is the impressive meeting room, the Sala dei Notari. On the second floor is the Municipal Library. The building also houses the National Gallery of Umbria
- Galleria Nazionale dell’Umbria (National Gallery of Umbria) (in the Palazzo dei Priori on Corso Vannucci). 8.30-19.30 from Tuesdays to Sundays: closed Mondays, 1st January, 1st May, 25 December.. The collection consists of paintings from the 13th to the 19th century, including artists such as Perugino, Nicola e Giovanni Pisano, Beato Angelico, Benozzo Gozzoli, and Pintoricchio. 6.50.
- Etruscan Well (Pozzo Etrusco), Piazza Danti 18 (To the right, just past the front entrance of the cathedral). 11.00-13.30 / 14.30-17.00, longer in the summer months. Damp and dark but an excellent way of appreciating the skills of Third Century BC Etruscan architects.
- Just walking around. There is probably no city in the world that better rewards the casual explorer in the sheer variety of its streetscapes. You can stroll along a Roman aqueduct that connects two of the city's hills, passing doors on the third stories of homes to peer over the edge at the doors at street level below. You can walk along the Via delle Volta della Pace, which follows the Etruscan city wall, but is now wholly arched over by a Gothic portico. You can stumble along cobbled streets that have the unique combination of slopes interrupted by small steps that only Italians seem to master. The wide, traffic-free Corso Vannucci, named after the painter known as Il Perugino, is what really makes Perugia. You can loll with the students from the International University on the steps of the Cathedral at one end or amble down the Corso from those steps to sit on a bench at the other end and look over Umbria's hills as the sun sets.
- San Domenico is on Corso Cavour, down the hill to the southeast of Corso Vannucci. It is a Gothic church whose three aisles were a model for the design of the later cathedral of San Lorenzo. San Domenico has faced many problems in the past. Soon after its completion, the upper section was found to be unstable and had to be demolished. In 1614 and 1615 other parts collapsed. The rebuilt church was consecrated in 1632.
- San Pietro. About 1km further along Corso Cavour after San Domenico, this church and abbey is well filled with fine works of art, including by Perugino. Interesting hexagonal bell tower. See too the medieval garden through the hall off the courtyard.
- Academy of Fine Arts. At the bottom of Via dei Priori in the former convent of San Francesco al Prato. A small but excellent collection of plaster casts of famous sculptures: the Dying Gaul, two of Michangelo’s Prisoners, the Laocoön and His Sons, and even the reconstructed façade of the Roman temple at Clitunno. The Pinacoteca is not overwhelming, with a interesting selection from the Academy's four centuries' old collection. €5, €3 reduced. Open Saturday 14:30-17, and Sunday 10:30-13 & 14:30-17..
- Umbria Jazz. The Umbrian Jazz festival takes place all over Umbria but is centred on Perugia, with a large number of concerts both free and with admission fee. Over the years the Festival has attracted just about every famous jazz player. The Festival takes place for a week and two weekends in the middle of July every year. During this period Perugia has a really beautiful atmosphere, with jazz concerts in the center of the city .
- Eurochocolate. Perugia is home to the producers of Perugina and Baci chocolates. It hosts a very popular annual chocolate festival every October. 
- Music Fest Perugia. Over two weeks in August, MusicFestPerugia produces classical concerts in the historical and sumptuous surroundings of Sala dei Notari, Basilica di San Pietro, the Cattedrale di San Lorenzo and the Caio Melisso. Performed by a combination of world famous professionals, and their most promising students, MusicFestPerugia aims to keep the classical repertoire vibrant and alive.
- Let's cook in Umbria, Strada Comunale San Marino 25 (Perugia), ☎ (+39) 075.589.9951, e-mail: email@example.com. Offers cooking classes, winery tours, gourmet tours, excursions to artisan chocolate and olive oil producers, truffle hunting and very popular cooking vacation programs that include accommodation and excursions to remote villages throughout Umbria and Tuscany.
For most tourists, the center, or downtown, of Perugia will be the most rewarding place to eat either lunch or dinner. The main street 'walk' begins at the Piazza Duomo at the Fontana Maggiore and ends with a dramatic view that showcases the city's churches and the Umbrian countryside. There are many dining options along this street. The last hotel on the right hand side (Hotel Brufani) before reaching the viewpoint offers five star accommodation and regional dishes, specializing in legumes and fantastic olive oils. At the other end of Corso Vannucci, just to the right of the cathedral, is a charming pizzeria, La Mediterranea. It is comprised of two rooms, the first with a brick oven and a buffet where an expert pizzaiolo slides freshly topped pizzas onto the stone hearth. This restaurant is always crowded, and only open from 1-4 and 7-11. Arrive either right at opening or after the traditional Italian dinner hours if you don't want to wait outside. The prices range from 5-10 euro per pizza. The pizzas are also available for take-out without a cover charge. Step inside the door and give your order to one of the white-aproned gentlemen who will take your money and deliver you your pizza (wait outside while it's being cooked).
Located on the historic Via Volte della Pace lies La Botte pizzeria. La Botte operates from 12-3 and 7-11 and offers a variety of local pizzas for in restaurant dining or take-out. At 3.50 Euro for a take-out pizza, La Botte offers one of the best deals in town for those on a budget.
You definitely have to go by Dal mi Cocco, a traditional Perugian restaurant. A fixed menu for 13 euro and a bottle of good wine for 5. Make sure to make a reservation though (+39 0755732511). Open from 20.30, so real Italian dinner times. All the food is made fresh, a visit to Perugia is completed by eating here. Also perfect for groups. For dessert, the gelato at Gambrinus Centro, on Via Bonazzi just off the opposite side of the Piazza is delicious with a great many flavours. Or continue down the road past the pizza shop, and down the winding street. When you come to the end, turn left and walk down the road through the historic apartments until you see the ducal palace which is now the Universita' dei Stranieri di Perugia. On the right side of the street is a delightful chocolate shop which serves freshly made chocolates as well as an assortment of gelato—the chocolate flavours are fantastic.
- Osteria Il Gufo, via della Viola 18. 8pm-1am, closed sundays, mondays. A very good osteria with good green salads and decent prices. The homemade Limoncello is a nice touch.
- Settimo Sigillo, Via Ulisse Rocchi phone=. An excellent trattoria/ristorante with great prices that serves wonderful local cuisine, good wines and deserts, and has very friendly staff.
- Merlin Pub, Via del Forno. Good place to drink, good mix of locals and students alike. Good offers on beers, remember if you get a leaflet, make sure the barman sees it, otherwise you will get charged full whack. Look out for Pisco, the owner, who will love to give you a free welcome shot.
- Punta di Vista. Just off the Piazza Italia, open air bar which is open in the summer. Nice cocktails and (like the name says) a beautiful view.
This article is based on Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike 3.0 Licensed text from the article Perugia on Wikivoyage.