Assisi & Orvieto Reviews
We've found 42 Assisi & Orvieto reviews from Viator.com travelers and members: what they loved, what they liked and what they think could be improved. It's all here to help you make the most of your next trip.
Overall our trip was ok. I liked the side trip to Orvieto, I did not care for the lunch sidetrip. It appeared to me that lunch was simply a way to get us to buy 'stuff' at that location. The time wasted at that location could have been put to better use in Assisi. I didn't feel we had enough time in Assisi to really get to appreciate the city. Lunch in Assisi would have more of an experience, than the lunch at a roadside resort location. That kind of experience I can get in the States!
We were very excited about our upcoming day trip to Assisi but were disappointed in the end. Our guide on the bus seemed to give us only the bare minimum of information during our trip, with little enthusiasm. To him it may have been mundane, but this was our only trip to Assisi and we would have appreciated someone who added more information rather than less. The main attraction was Assisi but with all the other stops on the trip (Orvieto, lunch at the farm and Santa Maria degli Angeli), precious time was taken away from really appreciating Assisi and the Basilica. By the time we got to Assisi, walked through town with another guide and were finally given some time to explore on our own, there were only 40 minutes left before we had to meet back at the bus. There was barely time to see the Basilica let alone perusing some of the local stores and artisans. I was expecting the Assisi guide to take us into the Basilica and explain what we were seeing but again we were disappointed - we were left to figure it out on our own. We couldn't even find the supposed 28 works of St. Francis that were in the church and there was no guide to ask. This was our second tour. Our first was two years ago at the Vatican. Our tour guide then was very knowledgeable, funny and made everything very interesting however, again, we were not taken inside St. Peter's Basilica with the guide - contrary to what we expected. Guides are allowed inside these churches - having ours do the same would have been much better. The Viator tour descriptions are misleading. To us "visiting St. Francis' Basilica" means a guided tour inside. The trip was disappointing.
We enjoyed our trip. However, we booked the trip because we wanted to go to Assisi. We were only in Assisi for about 2 hours. It was a very rushed view of the city and although the tour guide for Assisi was excellent she had only 1 hour and 40 minutes to show us all that amazing beauty.
We feel that the time in Orvieto was wasted. We were dumped in the center of the town and never even told that importance of the church is that the real presence was revealed to a priest. The Pope came and built the church to commemorate the miracle. (The Assisi guide told us that, after the fact. Although it was fun to see Orvieto, a place we had never even heard of----the time could have been spent walking around Assisi. Is there some reason that we were only allowed to spend 2 hours in Assisi?
Since it is so difficult to get to Assisi and Orvieto by train, my friend and I thought this would be a great way to see these places in one day. Our tour guide didn't provide much knowledge of these towns and the lunch was cold and terrible. As a frequent traveler to Italy, I will tour on my own next time.
Pick-up & delivery back to the hotel was great, and the bus was clean and comfortable. The drive through the country and around the lake is beautiful. We did, however, feel rushed through everything, and there was no time to ask any specific questions. Our bus guide did not give any details of the countryside. It would have been more interesting, as it is a long drive, if there was commentary through the trip in regard to the olive groves, why we saw roses planted at the end of grape vine rows, etc. Our guide in Assisi did not maintain the group and started giving details before all were assembled so we missed information. We did not receive our maps to Orvieto until we returned to the bus rather than when we were left to go on our own sightseeing. Perhaps to get a good feel and knowledge of both towns is too much for one day.
Review by Anonymous, July 2009
Doing what: Assisi and Orvieto Day Trip from Rome
Assisi, Orvieto, and Santa Maria degli Angeli are all places definitely worth visiting. A one-day trip from Rome is not the optimal way to do that. There just isn't enough time spent on each site. The pick-up was convenient and timely. It was disappointing to see that it was a smaller bus with no on-board toilet facility. There is none at the offices. We went during a particularly hot spell in Rome, and the bus air conditioning was not able to really keep up with it. The driver keep the temp at 19 degrees, which with all the windows in the bus getting sun didnt keep the bus cooler. The driver and guide were selling chilled half-liter bottles of water for 1 euro each. The guide was okay, but basically read from a script. We were on our own in the Orvieto cathedral. Lunch was tasty and including some minimal samples of local products. It took a bit too long, which took away from time spent at the sites of interest. Absolutely no drinks were included, not even water. Then on to Assisi. We were handed off to a local guide who walked us through fast to the Church -- no time to see the town or to grab a gelato or do any shopping other than in the Basica gift shop, and very limited even there. You almost have to choose to see the church or to stop at their gift shop. The basilica itself is on three levels. We had a little difficulty getting back to the meeting point from inside - instructions and signs were not too clear. Santa Maria Degli Angeli was the last stop, the briefest, and the loveliest. We had 15 minutes with no inside guide before the two hour return bus ride.
OK tour, but more time is needed in both towns. To make the tour better, I would suggest skipping the wine-tasting lunch stop and have the lunch in either Assisi or Orvieto to allow more time there. Also, the guide could have told us more about the areas we traveled through.
We only had 25 minutes in Orvieto, time enough to use the restrooms. We would have loved to roam around this lovely town, but it was off to lunch at the winery, where we tasted only one white and red wine, and while it was very good, you can no longer carry liquor on board the plane, so we were hesitant to purchase. The lunch left a lot to be desired. The pasta was very dry and could have used more sauce; you got half a potato and a slice of pork, no dessert. The winery was beautiful but in the US Napa and Sonoma have beautiful vineyards too. Assisi was very beautiful, and while we had time to roam around it wasn't very much. After Assisi, we made another stop at a church for a half an hour. It was not necessary; I felt that this time time could have been used at the beginning of our trip in Orvieto. I must say that because we did not rent a car, this was our only opportunity to visit this area.
The reason we took the tour was to see the towns of Assisi and Orvieto. We saw them, but at lightning speed! Only a little over half an hour at Orvieto and just over an hour at Assisi. Most disappointing. Stopping at a farmhouse in the middle of nowhere for nearly two hours for lunch was a complete waste of time. The coach, driver and tour director however, were first class - no complaints.
We traveled on a very small, bumpy, uncomfortable bus, which sounded like it was going to fall apart at any moment. We traveled to Orvieto first, and was given just a short time to see the town. We were herded on the bus to take to the lift to get to the top of the city. It was very crowded and the tour guide said to push, push yourself in. The back door caught on my heel of my shoe. There was no tour or explaination of the church or any landmarks. We had to hussle back to the bus. We stopped for lunch at a country inn and the food was fair. It was great if you liked a half a plate piled high with lentils.Next on to Assisi where we were finally given a very good tour guide but when she was done, we only had about 20 mintues to be on our own. We also stopped at a cathedral near the town and were given 20 minutes to dash 3 blocks away and return. I noticed the tour guide stayed with the bus. This is my fourth tour with Viator. They all have been excellent except this one. I was very disappointed.
Orvieto and Assisi are beautiful places to visit - just not this way. Our guide was poor and did not give us options with a meeting point in Assisi, so ALL had to stay together and go through all the sites. No free time to shop or just explore the town of Assisi freely. The guide did not pass out a phone number to call if lost - and one couple got lost (easy to happen in a crowded city where the guide is moving you quickly from one place to the other!) We spent time looking for the couple and luckly found them walking to the last spot on the tour. Why not make at least the last sight optional - and let those have free time that are done with the tour plan? Poorly planned!! Lunch was in a hotel dining room even, instead of in the village at a nice outside cafe. Bus was one with seats crammed close together - and for a 2 1/2 hour return trip one would expect a better bus. A long and disappointing day for such a beautiful place.
For the same cost, or less, I could have taken the same trip by train and had a more fulfilling time. First, the trip was too short. Our group of ten were rushed through both cities. Admiring a city at a brisk walking speed does not constitute visiting a city. Even more, I felt short changed because we were only permitted a half hour of free time in Orvieto and we were only taken to a church. Visiting the caves could have made the trip more memorable, as well as a walking tour with a knowledgeable tour guide. Assisi was beautiful and it was unfortunate our tour guide did not talk and offer history about the city as we raced from St Claire's to St. Francis church. There was no time for pictures and it was disappointing to hear an other groups tour guide explaining more about the history of the town than our own tour guide. Your company could save more money by not hiring a tour guide - it would probably be better, if your goal is not to inform your guests. The side stop for lunch and a taste of a wine was nice. Lunch was good. Our driver was safe and prompt. And our official tour guide on the trip was nice as well. I can only suggest he do more research of the towns so he can better inform us. It was a plus that he knew multiple languages too, because not all guests spoke English.