Todi is a picturesque hilltop town in the heart of the province of Umbria – often referred to as the green heart of Italy. It is a land locked province surrounded by beautiful scenery and mountains in the distance. But its people are the real beauty. They are quite literally beautiful people.
The older citizens of Todi are energetic and engaged. Often aged in their 80s and 90s they will volunteer a “buongiorno” in the morning and “Buonasera” in the afternoon or evening saying good morning or good evening. If you have any Italian they will be happy to stop and converse jsust as you might in your neighbourhood at home.
Shop keepers, waiters, police and carabinarie are mostly able to converse in English. And a translator app comes in handy. They love it when you try to communicate in Italian and are very patient, polite and often a picture of trending, casual elegance… even the police!
On the whole this town is very clean and well kept. Comune (Council) workers are often about tending to tasks that need attention. But generally, Todi runs at a slower pace, observing the “home for lunch closing times” within the walls as the walking distances for lunch and a siesta are not far. Groceries can be bought in the morning or the late afternoon and dinner at a restaurant is usually a late affair.
Walking off that pasta meal to go home at night is a joy, particularly in the balmy temperatures of the Italian summer evenings. Streets are well lit and there are plenty of people around. As you walk past the houses on the way home you might hear music from the 70s and 80s coming from inside a home or a conversation between mother and child.
Unsurprisingly Todi is one Italian town that has stolen the hearts of many English speaking ex-pats who now live half the year locally. They have assimilated into the local culture enjoying the morning coffee at their favourite cafe in the Piazza del Popolo , Piazza Garibaldi or Piazza Mazzini accessed from via Cavour. The last three names are heroes of the unification movement called Risorgimento that led to the Republic. They are repeated in every town and City across the country.
Todi is an Art Town of some note. Not like Florence which has wall to wall tourists. In Todi you get to meet the local artists, especially with Art Class Italy. We organise these experiences and they will happen organically during your stay.
After a week or two you might feel like a local, greeting artists , ex-pats and local Todini you have met as they walk across the Piazza Del Popolo for their morning coffee, or sitting at the next table of your favourite place for gelato.