Do you want to discover the secret and mysterious charm of Italy? Here are 5 mystical experiences not to be missed in Umbria.
Umbria, one of the smallest Italian regions, offers a rich artistic and cultural heritage, breathtaking landscapes, food and wine and crafts. But how many of you know the mystery that surrounds this region?
Among mummies, giant skeletons and underground visits, you will discover the hidden charm of this region by discovering it from a different point of view. Are you ready to immerse yourself in a surreal atmosphere?
1. Scarzuola: the ideal city
One of the most evocative places in Umbria is certainly the Scarzuola, located in the municipality of Montegabbione, in the province of Terni.
La Scarzuola was born in 1978 from the creativity of the architect Tommaso Buzzi, who acquired the convent where St. Francis of Assisi lived to transform it into an ideal city inspired by neo-mannerism and surrealism, in which all the rules are overturned.
Visiting the Scarzuola, you will find yourself among labyrinths, giant statues, spirals and eyes engraved in stone full of symbolism, thanks to which you will immerse yourself into a dreamlike atmosphere. The current owner, the eccentric nephew of the creator, will take you on an evocative journey made of otherworldly reflections and the discovery of yourself.
The Scarzuola is an allegory of human existence, but it will be your task to find its meaning and return home with a different awareness from that with which you crossed the boundaries of the ideal city.
2. The Calamita cosmica: the contact between man and Universe
If you are curious to find yourself in front of a human skeleton of exorbitant dimensions, you should definitely visit the Calamita cosmica (Cosmic Magnet), a contemporary work of art by the artist Gino de Dominicis located in the deconsecrated church of the Holy Trinity in Foligno, in the province of Perugia.
The work, which represents an anthropomorphic supine skeleton in the nave of the church, measures 24 meters!
The nose is replaced by a bird's beak, which is a recurring element in the artist's works. But the focal point of the work lies in the long golden shaft that starts from the middle finger of the skeleton and rises upwards. This detail was inserted by the artist to symbolize the connection between man and the cosmic world.
The majesty of the skeleton and the idea of how man is constantly connected with the universe will leave you breathless!
3. Narni underground: between ghosts and enigmatic messages
Worth visiting is also Narni sotterranea (Narni underground) in the province of Terni. The dungeons were discovered in 1979 by a group of speleologists, who opened a passage under an ancient Dominican convent.
Visiting Narni underground, you will find yourself in a mystical atmosphere, in which to immerse yourself in cisterns dating back to ancient Roman domus, crypts, frescoes and coded messages!
In the Room of Torments, where the Inquisition Tribunal was located, you will admire the enigmatic graffiti full of Masonic and esoteric symbols carved in stone by prisoners. Among them, Giuseppe Andrea Lombardini was the prisoner who engraved most of the cryptic messages so that the inquisitors could not decipher them.
Prepare... legend has it that his ghost still hovers in the dungeons!
4. Campo del sole: the Italian Stonehenge
In Punta Navaccia, in the province of Perugia, you will find Campo del sole (Field of the Sun), a sort of Italian Stonehenge: an open-air museum overlooking the waters of Lake Trasimeno.
The work, consisting of sculptures-columns arranged in a spiral, occupies a diameter of 44 meters on the naturalistic area and was created by Italian and internationally renowned artists. The spiral culminates in a table at the center of which is placed a solar symbol.
To make it, sculptors used "pietra serena", a sandstone extracted from local quarries.
Although the site was the site of the battle between Hannibal and the Roman army in 217 BC, there is no correlation between this historical episode and the work of art; on the contrary, it will be up to you to give a personal meaning to the meditative path that you will carry out between the various sculptures.
The primordial forms represented by the columns favor the encounter between heaven and earth; let yourself be carried away by an evocative dimension out of time!
5. The Mummies Museum of Ferentillo
In 1806, a Napoleonic edict established that the tombs were moved outside the city walls. But when the crypt of the church of Santo Stefano in Ferentillo, in the province of Terni, was opened for the exhumation of the bodies, it was discovered that they had not rotted, on the contrary, they were perfectly preserved! The spontaneous mummification of the corpses, buried in direct contact with the ground, took place thanks to chemical processes due to the different organic materials naturally present in the soil.
Today the crypt is home to the museum and houses 10 heads, 270 skulls and 24 mummies, of which the oldest dates back to the seventeenth century; among these, we find the bodies of Napoleonic soldiers and a woman and her fetus.
If you love the macabre, you cannot miss a visit to the Museum of the Mummies of Ferentillo!
Dear travellers, to discover Umbria from an unusual point of view, in the name of mystery and mysticism, you just have to pack your bags and set off to discover these 5 experiences that will leave you to reflect on the intricate relationship between human beings and the universe!