Allerona: Within the walls of an Umbrian hilltown
On your right is a gate decorated with colorful ceramics. If the gate is open, go down the stairs and explore this creative and botanic treasure.
If its closed or you prefer not to go in, then stop here and look down over the wall while I tell you about it.
The proper name is the "Garden of Allerona," but I'll always call this Estelle's Garden.
Artist Estelle Tieman is an American who lives part time in Allerona. She created the sculptures and mosaics here, and her neighbors and friends helped create the garden.
The street above is called Via della Buca. Bruce, a garden designer whose vision played out here, recalls finding old bottles and pieces of ceramics as he dug the garden. Buca means "hole," and in this case, it meant pit or dump. Townspeople would throw their garbage over the castle wall, and it landed in what is now this enchanting garden.
Follow the mosaic path down to your right to appreciate Estelle's mural of some of the Alleronese.
The little girl being kissed by a very big, brown dog is my daughter. She's being held by Paolo. To the far right, the sweet, bald old man sitting with two canes is Paolo's dear Nonno Gino, who died in 2016 at age 103.
Enjoy the garden at your leisure. When you're done, go back upstairs to the road, then turn right and keep walking. Otherwise if you're still on the road, just continue going straight.