Day Six - Orvieto

Trip Start Nov 03, 2011
Trip End Nov 10, 2011

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Flag of Italy  , Umbria,
Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Off for a long drive today, but the time seemed to pass very quickly. Read a little, snoozed a little and watched the countryside change from Tuscany to Umbria, where we stopped in Orvieto. This is a town on top of a cliff, so we had to queue and take a funicular up to the station. This was fun and as the weather has been steadily improving the further south we go, the views from up high were really lovely.
We took a coach from the funicular station, which dropped us off in the square next to the Duomo. This catherdral is huge and very ornate, but beautifully so. The inside was just as impressive, with alternate rows of white alabaster and dark travertine. There were various sculptures, and lots of beautiful frescos, so we spent quite a while just walking round and taking it all in. This really is an amazing building, in a city not so well known to travellers - I'm really glad we came here.
Once we had seen everyhting we made our way outside and just went wandering - this is the thing I love about Italian cities - you can just wander down the old, narrow streets and find lots of interesting things. Orvieto was one of these cities, as we walked right to the end of town (or as far as the city wall) and looked out over the countryside. Some of the streets were quite steep, so we tried to avoid those! But every now and again the only way was up, so we had to grit our teeth and get climbing. It wasn't far, but it really was steep - I was nearly kissing my knees!
We walked back through the Piazza della Repubblica and stopped on the main street for lunch, in a bar called 'Cafe Incognito'. We had our regular ham and cheese panini, along with a caffe frappe - cold black coffee with loads of sugar - yum!
We were supposed to meet back at the funicular station, so we took a slow walk through the shopping streets. We got there quite early, so we took time to look over the city walls down to the towns below. Then on the spur of the moment, and fed up with hanging round, we dashed back for one last look at the Cathedral, which was now bathed in afternoon sunshine - beautiful!
We were still early back to the funicular, but as the rest of the group on this tour seem to arrive 10 minutes early for everything, we were last again! Oh well, I wouldn't have missed the last photo of the Cathedral for anything.
We headed back to the coach, and then read and snoozed some more until we arrived in Fiuggi and the Hotel Argentina. We had a relax in our room, and then headed down for dinner.
We sat with a group of other ladies from our trip and had quite a laugh over dinner. One of them had a real soft spot for Mauro the driver, so we were laughing at hor mooning at him over her dinner! At every hotel we have stayed at, each time the food gets better and bigger. At this hotel we had soup, then pasta, then the main course and if you had room, some lovely desserts!
After a great feed we headed upstairs for a good night's sleep - we have a long day tomorrow - in Rome! 
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