Urbino and Montefeltro, new opportunities for green and smart tourism

TO 600 years since the birth of Frederick of Montefeltrodefined by his contemporaries “Light of Italy”, Urbinoa fifteenth-century jewel between the Metauro and Foglia valleys, after an entire year of celebratory events, is preparing to become part of Pesaro and its 52 municipalities Capital of Culture 2024. But the city wants to go beyond the pride of its sandstone-paved historic centre, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, to be the pinnacle of Renaissance art and architecture integrated into the medieval past and to be home to one of the oldest universities in Europe.

Urbino, Palazzo Ducale Urbino and Montefeltro new opportunities for green and smart tourism

Urbino, Palazzo Ducale

It is proposed, with the whole Montefeltro area, as one new, green and smart destination, with a collaborative and extensive network between all subjects, public and private, of the city and of the centers of its territory. And it is also precisely with the contribution of the 16 thousand students who are part of the life of the city and with the ferment of their ideas that Urbino, refusing the label of city-museum, wants to open up to tourism as well as to its own citizens with offers in step of the times.

Baptism of Christ, Oratory of San Giovanni di Urbino Urbino and Montefeltro new opportunities for green and smart tourism

Baptism of Christ, Oratory of San Giovanni in Urbino

Sustainable tourism and new opportunities for the area

A new strategy for promoting the destination was in fact the theme of a conference held in the San Giovanni Oratory on the theme “Tourism and sustainability: new opportunities for the area”, an in-depth forum with the Mayor Maurizio Gambini, the Councilor for Tourism Roberto Cioppi, the Magnificent Rector of the University Giorgio Calcagnini, the professor Tonino Pencarelli and the main public and private stakeholders. The provincial president Pier Stefano Fiorelli and Carla Rossi representing the tourist guides spoke for Confesercenti. The speeches were moderated by Federico Scaramucci of the Raffaello Travel Group, regional Assoviaggi contact person and president of Inside Marche Live.

Many present tourism operators, including restaurateurs, hoteliers and managers of hospitality structures, united by shared values ​​on the theme of the needs of the emerging tourism segment that demands simplicity and sustainability. They agreed with the city institutions on the need for a network based on synergy and dialogue to create aintegrated tourist offer useful for fully exploiting the potential and identifying features of the city and the territories with attention to sustainability as a key to both tourism and economic development.

Urbania, Palazzo Ducale Urbino and Montefeltro new opportunities for green and smart tourism

Urbania, Palazzo Ducale

Music, theatre, outdoor activities and food and wine proposals

A breakthrough is only possible through one network also aimed at benefiting the resident communities to offer them as well as visitors personalized and unique experiences generating benefits both in the medium and in the long term with a transversal integrated product. Determinants i digital channels for an effective communication strategy and to enrich the visitors’ agenda with music, theatre, outdoor activities and food and wine proposals. Citizens, visitors and university students are the actors and users at the same time.

The construction of the network is already underway – and the success of Federico di Montefeltro’s celebrations demonstrates this – even with neighboring municipalities, such as ancient Urbania with which it shared most of its history, but also with mountain communities and with the many little-known villages, without neglecting the sensitivity towards renewable sources, sustainability in agriculture and the maintenance of capital for future generations. It should be remembered that he worked here Gino Girolomoni, the father of Italian organic agriculture, with a still active community with a pasta factory on Isola del Piano. Therefore Urbino as a creative center, a meeting place for ideas, ready to develop the major current issues. Almost a return to the past when Federico with his wife Battista Sforza had the ambition to bring together in his palace the best artists and minds of Europe, artists, architects, poets and philosophers, transforming it even then into a capital of culture.

Ancient print of the city of Urbania Urbino and Montefeltro new opportunities for green and smart tourism

Ancient print of the city of Urbania

Initiatives, festivals, events and tourism enhancement projects

Many proposals – emerged from the debate held at the Oratory of San Giovanni – of associations, especially of young people, which promote initiatives, festivals, events and tourism enhancement projects in the name of volunteering among which the Alte Marche Apennine Cycle for bike lovers, Urbino Jazz Club for teaching and concerts, “Happennino”, with a play on words that recalls “happen” and the Apennines: that is, making sure that something happens that attracts the outside in the territory and in its smaller villages lacking appealing appeal. The young people of Urbino Teatro Urbano also took part, actors, set designers and directors who took the theater where it would never arrive, or Lands Of Urbino or Outdoor Marche Life. Telling Urbino (Tales of Urbino) in Italian and English is easy through the QR code.

Fundamental – it was reiterated in the speeches – theuse of the web to enhance a destination that is already widely chosen as a tourist destination also by upgrading the accommodation offer according to international parameters, implementing aggregation and a modern business network. But even the tourist is asked for greater awareness of responsibility to maintain resources with cohesion and cultural integration with the residents.

Museum of Urbania, Celestial Sphere and Terrestrial Sphere by Gerardo Mercatori Urbino and Montefeltro new opportunities for green and smart tourism

Museum of Urbania, Celestial Sphere and Terrestrial Sphere by Gerardo Mercatori

Marco Bruschinithe director general of the Agency for tourism and internationalization of the Marches, intervened with a video message that recalled how this region has a lot to offer which boasts 28 most beautiful villages in Italy 2 national parks, 4 regional, and 6 nature reserves as well as avant-garde on the theme of sustainability with 16 blue and 23 orange flags.

On the occasion of the conference, on the initiative of the Municipality and Confesercenti, a large group of tour operators, journalists and representatives of the Cral, company recreational clubs, from various regions of Italy were able to get in touch with the local realities, by visiting the websites history, the beauties of the area and tasting the vast food and wine heritage with a supply chain in which agricultural producers and processors increasingly give a biological and sustainable footprint while respecting the environment and the health of consumers.

Urbino and surroundings, cradle of Renaissance art

Urbino cannot fail to remain the main attraction with its beauty Ducal Palace, a real fortified citadel commissioned by the ambitious Federico da Montefeltro and today the seat of the National Gallery of the Marches, the house of Raphael, the Cathedral and the many places of faith. There is the highest Renaissance art, but also the eighteenth-century art of the Albani and that of the 20th century by De Carlo.

Urbania, collection of ceramics from Casteldurante Urbino and Montefeltro, new opportunities for green and smart tourism

Urbania, collection of ceramics from Casteldurante

Comprimaria is nearby Urbania, the ancient Casteldurante of the Alta Valle del Metauro, with centuries of historical interweaving, and which is proposed as an equally important destination. It is a city with a medieval layout that had to change its name three times in the course of its life, famous for its majolica. It boasts important civic museums, such as the Leonardi, the Palazzo and the Barco Ducale, the Church of the dead with the Cemetery of the mummies. A city to be explored on foot, from the walk on the ancient walls to the Ponte de’ Cocci where the ceramics were put to dry. And then all around there is a great naturalistic and historical heritage: S. Angelo in Vado, Mercatello sul Metauro, the Monti della Cesana nature reserve and the Pieve di San Cassiano and Sasso Corvaro and the spiritual itineraries of the Gola del Furlo.

A popular destination for gourmands it is Acqualagna for truffles but also out of season everywhere the food and wine offer, in which peasant values ​​converge, is truly satisfying. To taste the famous Casciotta Dop, the crostolo, a stop of piadina of complex preparation to be filled, the cured meats and elaborate first courses.

Among the stops on the Confesercenti tour led by Raffaello Travel Group, theGirolomoni cooperative company where the participants got to know the story of an excellence of the territory and its visionary founder. Today it is among the most important companies in the food sector with a modern pasta factory that only supplies itself with ancient organic grains, with an adjoining farmhouse with educational farm, Il Monastero, with 10 monastic-style rooms. There is also an ancient parish church and an inn where chef Andrea Mei creates strictly local and seasonal dishes and dishes.

Another place of taste not to be missed is the Portaviva restaurant, within the ancient walls of Urbino, recommended by Michelin. An unmissable dive into the past is instead the Mill of the Rediscovered active since the thirteenth century, fed by the waters of the Metauro, which preserves the entire plant intact and as a stable that housed the mules that turned the millstones. Today it has come back to life thanks to an agritourism with just three rooms and is home to botany and cooking lessons, organized by the Archifood volunteer association which promotes knowledge of recipes from memory.

But that is only one aspect of the truth Montefeltro, all to be discovered. Even the most disadvantaged areas, because they are less known, with the valorisation of the available resources can be supported by a targeted tourist use.

Urbino and Montefeltro, new opportunities for green and smart tourism