Perugia Guide, Umbria, Italy. The History, and Travel Information. Vacation Packages. Lifted by a hill above a valley patterned with fields, where the river Tiber runs swift and clear, Perugia is Umbria's petite and immediately likeable capital. Its historic center, rises in a helter-skelter of cobbled alleys, arched stairways and piazzas framed by magnificent palazzi (mansions). History seeps through every shadowy corner of these streets and an aimless wander through them can feel like time travel. The closest tourist destinations to Perugia are the lovely pilgrimage town of Assisi just 20 minutes away by train and Lake Trasimeno. A circular tour of the Umbria region could take in a range of pretty historic towns: Assisi, Spello, Spoleto, Orvieto, Lake Trasimeno and Gubbio. There are also plenty of smaller towns and villages where travelers can potter and pass a pleasant couple of hours. Deruta is famous for its ceramics and is a good place to view Italian majolica in a museum and to buy in local shops.