Lake Trasimeno is immersed in a lovely environment, surrounded by green rolling hills.
The Etruscan people settled around the lake and established their sophisticated culture there.
In 217 b. C. Hannibal, the Carthaginian general, on the northern shore of Tuoro dramatically defeated the Roman army.
During the Middle Ages it became to be known as “the lake of Perugia”: as a matter of fact the larger city submitted the small villages and the islands of the lake, that were turned into lucrative properties since the 12th century, providing fish and wheat.
The charming view of Trasimeno became an ideal element for the backdrops of many Renaissance painters, namely “Il Perugino”.
Today it is a favourite resort for both locals and foreigners who enjoy the calm and beauty of the lake and its surroundings.
Passignano sul Trasimeno is an ancient medieval village, defended by a castle that can be reached thorough a fascinating maze of narrow streets and alleyways, and with a lakeside promenade with a scenic view and a garden. From the pier a ferryboat leaves regularly to Isola Maggiore, the second largest and only inhabited island on the Trasimeno. A path in the wild will take the visitor around the tiny island, with stops at medieval churches and at an old crumbling castle. The fishermen’s village still gains popularity from the traditional handmade Irish embroideries.
Castiglione del Lago. From a spur protruding onto the lake, Castiglione dominates the western shore through a fortified fortress. The imposing castle built by German emperor Frederick II can be visited with access from the Palazzo Della Corgna, once the 16th century dwelling of local lords (admittance). The town central area is a great opportunity to shop for typical local products like cheese and truffles.
Panicale. Situated high on a hill, this town provides the best outlook for a scenic view of the entire lake. On the very top the medieval civic Palace is one of the oldest memories of Panicale. Just outside the city walls the church of San Sebastiano holds an unexpected treasure: the splendid early 16th century fresco depicting the Martyrdom of the Saint, by Pietro Perugino (admittance).
Città della Pieve. Once inhabited by the Etruscan people, and later the site of an important early medieval church, it is a land famous as the birthplace of Pietro Vannucci, the Renaissance painter better known as “Il Perugino” (although this is a nickname given by the Florentines).
Perugino’s masterpiece, a lovely Adoration of the Magi, is to be found at the Oratory “dei Bianchi”. More of his works are in the Cathedral, and in the Church of San Pietro, where the artist left a dramatic Deposition dating to the last years of his activity. Every tourist and visitor will love to squeeze into the Vicolo Baciadonne, or Kiss-the-woman alley, one of the narrowest streets of Italy. The rulers of the past, as the Perugians, built a Fortress on the eastern side of towns, whereas the Della Corgna and Della Fargna families used to have their severe palaces in the central area of Città della Pieve.