Osimo is one of those places in Le Marche where having been, you wonder why you'd never heard of it. Like Recanati, Fermo and Offida nearby, Osimo is a perfectly formed Renaissance jewel quietly carrying on with things.
In fact, the tourism authorities are promoting the town using the line 'Osimo, bella e ...segreta', although they are referring to the many underground grottoes. All of the above are small hill top towns not far from the Adriatic Coast and should be visited, not least for their less agressive aspect than their medieval Umbrian cousins.
Osimo is one of Le Marche's oldest inhabited centres. Not surprising when you take in the view from the gardens at the top of the town.
On a good day the panorama stretches from Gran Sasso in Abruzzo, via the Monti Sibillini and as far as San Marino the other way.
The town was a solid base during Roman times and the Romanised Piceni helped turn Osimo into a prestigious politcal, social and military centre supporting the nearby naval port of Ancona.
The medieval walls constructed between the 12th and 15th centuries enlarged the Roman defenses, but Osimo reached it aesthetic peak during the Renaissance and Baroque periods.
Many of the churches and buildings remain and they line the many imposing squares such as Piazza del Duomo, Piazza Gallo and Piazza Dante.
The cathedral of San Leopardo sits on the highest point of the town and is one of the region's finest examples of Romanic-Gothic architecture.
Near Osimo along the river Chienti Valley there are some beautiful Romanesque Abbeys such the Abbazia di Chiaravalle di Fiastra.
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