Perugia Farmhouse was quite simply a breath of fresh air after touring all over Italy. Perugia is the capital city of the region of Umbria, and its city is not unlike many of the others I have visited and written about over the past 2 months, but just outside of the city is an absolutely scenic stretch of land with rolling hills, fruit orchards and fields of sunflowers just beginning to wilt from the heat of the August sun. And these hills are dotted by old stone farm houses just like the one where I have spent the past 5 days. Its not like there was no sights to see around Perugia, but this stay was not about that. Instead I lounged around all day reading by the pool, and writing, and visiting with the animals. They have horses, the friendliest donkeys Ive ever met, sheep, goats, geese, chickens, ducks and dogs. The Farmhouse offers old bikes with baskets to its guests, and almost daily I would take a short ride to the local grocer and buy fresh food to cook in the quaint, country kitchen.
The people who run the Farmhouse Laura and Manuele have been wonderful. Laura I found is actually originally from NY so communication was never a problem. The volunteer staff, Jenny and Elston could not have been more friendly and helpful. And even the guests here are wonderful. You cant help but be the best version of yourself at the Farmhouse, it just relaxes every piece of you. I met a couple from Australia whom I joined for a day of wine and beer tasting. Just a 45 minute walk away, through the fields, there is a winery with a 10€ tour and wine tasting, and right across the street is a brewery, where for 10€ you can enjoy a giant plate of fresh meats, straight from their on-sight pig farm, and locally brewed beers. It was a nice day out. There is also the Perugina Chocolate factory, only 15 minutes away by bike, where for 7€ you can enjoy a really interesting tour of the production line and a chocolate tasting.
I feel recharged after my stay here, which is good because I have a busy month to come, bouncing my way across Europe until I fly home on October 2nd. But first, I'm off to San Benedetto for 5 more days with my Italian friends, Francesca and Luca, from my Uluru trip in Australia. So excited to see them again!