Italy’s Hidden Treasures – Fonti del Clitunno

A spot I wanted to write about for a long time are the Fonti del Clitunno. Situated alongside the Via Flaminia near the hamlet of Pissignano – in the Italian region Umbria – you could easily miss the entrance, which would be a shame, for I guarantee you at least an hour of inner peace, nature and lovely views.

Fonti del Clitunno - Umbria, Italy

The Fonti have existed for ages, as testified by Pliny the Younger who wrote ‘I have just been there and I regret not to have come earlier’. Besides Pliny, there are a lot of writers and celebrities who visited the Fonti, of which Virgil, Byron and Giosue Carducci are probably the most famous.

Of course, the Fonti is Pliny’s days were not exactly the same as they are now. An earthquake in 444 changed them, but more likely, today’s appearance is thanked to the fabulous work of Paolo Campello della Spina, who cleared away the soil (about 1860 – 1865) and planted the amazing vegetation that can be seen nowadays.

Fonti del Clitunno - Umbria, Italy Umb

I am not much of a botanist, so I will not mention the names of the vegetation in and outside the water, but you can easily look them up at the webside of the Fonti. All I can say is that the trees I saw were impressive and because the water is so clear, you can distinguish the various types of waterplants under the surface.

Also due to the clear water, it is possible to notice the difference in depth of the bottom, indicated by the different colours. At some places you can see the water bubbling up. It looks like the water is  sprouting from a rock.

The lake and the small isle in the middle of provide a nice rest area for the ducks and swans (you’re allowed to feed them when you buy a small sachet of food at the entrance).

Fonti del Clitunno - Umbria, Italy

Everywhere in the parc you can find small wooden benches to sit down on and enjoy the views or just relax in the shade provided by the weeping willow trees. I am very grateful the UNESCO included the Fonti and the nearby Tempietto (about a mile north) in the World Heritage.

My name is Yo, I live in a house named Monteolivo, in The Netherlands, in a village near Alkmaar, called Heiloo. In my bilingual blog `La Vita di monteolivo` I like to share my favorite things in life. Those are the Italian kitchen, my vegetable- and herbgarden, and my pets. There are six cats, of which Pio is my absolute nr. 1 and two German Shepherds called Uno and Chica. But most of all, three times a year I simply have to follow my roots, to travel to Italy and Umbria in particular.

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