An Interview with a Local Travel Blogger Jessica von Parto dall Umbria Nestled in the heart of Italy, the region of Umbria is often overlooked in favor of its more famous neighbors, Tuscany and Lazio. But those who take the time to visit this hidden gem are rewarded with picturesque countryside, charming hilltop towns, and a rich cultural heritage that dates back centuries. To learn more about what makes Umbria such a special place, we spoke with Jessica, a travel blogger and proud native of the region.
What is your earliest memory of travel, and how did it shape your love for exploring new places?
I have been traveling for as long as I can remember. Thankfully, my parents always took me to explore new places during our Sunday outings, and at the age of 12, I took my first solo study trip to England. That’s why travel is a part of my life.
What is the most important lesson you have learned from your travels?
I have definitely learned not to have prejudices about anything or anyone. Moreover, through traveling, I have learned to know myself better and that differences are a strength, not a weakness; they are what make us unique.
Can you tell us something about yourself and your blog? What inspired you to share your travel experiences online?
I am a traveler and a dreamer. In 2020, when the pandemic hit, I had just realized my dream of becoming a tour guide, turning my passion for travel into a job. It was a tough blow. So, feeling confined to my region, I realized that I knew Umbria much better than I thought, and I started sharing what I knew on social media. This decision was greatly appreciated, and that’s how Partodallumbria was born.
What are the must-see destinations for visitors to Umbria?
The classic itinerary for those visiting Umbria for the first time definitely includes Perugia, Assisi, Spello, Spoleto, and Orvieto. I recommend coming back because there are many things to discover and delve into!
What are some of your favorite hidden gems or off-the-beaten-path destinations in Umbria?
Among my favorite places are the Fonti del Clitunno, Lake Piediluco, the Menotre Valley, and the Valnerina. I could go on and on.
Umbria is known for its delicious cuisine. What are some of your favorite local dishes?
In Umbria, you’ll immediately fall in love with the local food and wine. Some absolute must-tries are the cured meats, bruschetta or strangozzi with truffle, legumes from Valnerina, and as for desserts, the Crescionda Spoletina and panpepato. Don’t forget to taste the local wines like Sagrantino, Montefalco Rosso, and Trebbiano!
Umbria is often called the “green heart of Italy” for its unspoiled natural beauty. What are the best ways to explore the countryside?
First and foremost, I recommend coming by car or renting one because public transportation doesn’t connect the region very well. That being said, the best way is to be prepared to walk and discover the villages and more unusual places.
What do you think sets Umbria apart from other regions in Italy?
The small medieval villages, the greenery, and the food make Umbria a unique region in the world.
Which areas are best to visit for local shopping?
For food, I recommend Valnerina, especially Norcia and Castelluccio. For wine, I suggest the wineries between Montefalco and Bevagna. However, in the center of every city, there’s the weekly market where you can find a little bit of everything. So, make sure to stop by and check it out!
Who has had the biggest influence on your life and why?
I try to take the best from every person I meet, so there isn’t one specific person.
Something that few people know about you?
Most of the time, I’m a cheerful and sunny person, but there are only a few people who can be around me when I’m not feeling my best.
What’s on your wishlist that you haven’t done yet?
My bucket list is incredibly long and constantly evolving! But my biggest dream at the moment is to go to Peru!
What’s your favorite way to relax and unwind after a long day?
It depends on my mood. I would say having an aperitif with friends or taking a solitary walk, perhaps in a new place!
What advice would you give to your younger self if you could go back in time?
Use your determination to never give up!
How can we activate rural areas in Umbria? What can the EU/Italy do for women in business?
There are many talented individuals in Umbria who believe in the potential of this region. Simply by listening to these people, we realize that much more can be done. Emphasizing the value of the territory, preserving traditions, connecting with nature, and promoting art are always excellent choices.
What’s your suggestion for someone who wants to create a travel blog?
Everyone can talk about travel, but nobody can do it like you. Find your unique way of communicating, discover your niche, and believe in what you do, even if the road seems uphill.
Following Links you can contact Jessica, and enjoy with her charming Umbria!
All images by Jessica, Parto dall Umbria, Copyright 2023