With a pristine medieval centre and an international student population, Perugia is Umbria’s largest and most cosmopolitan city. Its centro storico (historic centre), seemingly little changed in more than 400 years, rises in a helter-skelter of cobbled alleys, arched stairways and piazzas framed by solemn churches and magnificent Gothic palazzi (mansions). Reminders of its lively and often bloody past are everywhere, from ancient arches and medieval basilicas to Renaissance frescoes by the likes of Perugino and Raphael.
But while history reverberates all around, Perugia knows how to party. University students pep up the nightlife and fill cafe terraces, while music-lovers swarm to the city in July for Umbria Jazz, one of Europe's top jazz festivals.
These are our favorite local haunts, touristy spots, and hidden gems throughout Perugia.
Whether it’s a guided tour of a historic landmark, private tasting of local delicacies, or an off-road adventure — explore the best experiences in Perugia.