If you fancy venturing to the village of Paciano, you’re in good company — last year, Ed Sheeran bought a villa close by (complete with adjoining vineyard). The singer-songwriter has been reported to have described the area as “beautiful” (a description of surprisingly few words), which is reflected by the village officially being granted ‘Borghi più belli d’Italia’ status — one of the most beautiful villages in Italy.
A walled hill town, Paciano has been immaculately kept by its inhabitants. In the Middle Ages, the village was ruled by the city of Perguia and has a well-preserved castle from this era. The village was on the route from Perugia to Chiusi; and visitors can still find the watchtower which overlooked this road. Interestingly, the village is one of the few in Italy where its streets are still paved with bricks — a historical technique which used to be more widespread.
If you’re interested in discovering more about this quaint village, the locals run tours in both English and Italian.
The land around Paciano is rich in potassium, making it great for olive growing. Visitors can roll up their sleeves and get stuck in with the olive harvest and subsequent oil production at one of the various groves on the village’s periphery.
The village also boasts the Fontanaro Slow Food Cooking School, which encompasses the food chain from garden to plate. For wine-lovers, they also run a cooking class built around wine — including wine tasting, cellar visit and finishes with practical cooking demonstrations of four separate recipes (all paired with their own wines, of course).
There’s also a museum in the village — Trasimemo Banca dell Memoria del Trasimeno — which specialises in showcasing traditional trades and crafts from the region, such as woodworking, metal work and ceramics. The museum links these old techniques with the modern era via interactive displays and demonstrations from modern tradespeople who still practice them today.
If you’re a foodie, Paciano is also worth a visit — the restaurants are all highly regarded. Both Osteria La Loggetta and Locanda Manfredi have gorgeous views of Lake Transimeno from their panoramic terraces, and il Baretto makes a fab pitstop if you fancy a traditional Italian gelato or coffee. You never know, you might bump into Ed himself.
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