I’ve been writing about a lot of impressive towns boasting spectacular medieval architecture in Italy’s Marche region.
The medieval hilltop town of Òsimo is one such town that merits a visit when you next find yourself in the region. This is an easy one to reach – just a few kilometers from the regional capital of Ancona.
Òsimo sits on a hilltop in a strategic location, and boasting views all around – all the better to prepare oneself for a medieval invasion.
Luckily, it’s only tourists invading this walled town today.
The town offers impressive views over the surrounding hilltop towns, including Loreto. On the winter day when we visited, there were also views to the Monte Sibillini chain and clear views to the Appenines’ highest peak – the Gran Sasso.
The broad walkway where visitors can enjoy these views is a busy passenger throughway, lined with benches and playgrounds for young children.
Òsimo is a pleasant medieval town, although its roots trace back much further. It was originally founded by Greek settlers in the 7th century B.C and later became part of the Ancient Roman Empire. The imposing defensive walls were constructed during the medieval era.
The city’s duomo was constructed at the site of a Roman temple. San Leopardo was built in Romanesque style in the 12th century. The adjacent baptistery also merits a visit, with its lush 17th century frescoes.
The daily passeggiata appears to start from around the palazzo comunale, at least judging from what we observed our one day in town. Work on this monumental building was initiated at the start of the 1500s and wrapped up only two centuries later – at the end of the 1700s. Keep that in mind next time you complain about delays in any building work in your own home …
Òsimo also contains an impressive library and historical archive, and the more “modern” La nuova Fenice theatre (1877-1894). Sadly, it was closed due to COVID on our visit, but it seems worth a return visit to see a performance.
Our car enjoyed it so much it Òsimo that it broke down here and stayed for the weekend. Pro tip: Good luck finding a mechanic in the Marche over the weekend. : )
We made our way to Ancona where we were staying, and returned to Òsimo Monday morning where the local mechanic (expertly) fixed our car and had us on our way. Did give us the chance to see it again!
Despite the breakdown drama, we enjoyed our visit to this pretty medieval town.