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Photo of Ascoli Piceno

Visit Ascoli Piceno

Ascoli-Piceno is located at the southern end of the Marches region of Italy, in an attractive setting surrounded by mountains and designated natural parcs.

With origins dating back well before the ancient Romans, the name of the town comes from the Piceni tribe who once occupied this spot.

Ascoli-Piceno town centre

There is a very pleasant walled town to discover in Ascoli Piceno, with an attractive and interesting medieval centre, based around Piazza del Popolo. The town is also known for its towers, of which more than 50 remain from the original 200.

The Piazza del Popolo has been at the centre of the town for at least 2000 years, and many of the buildings around the square are constructed in marble (known as travertino).

Cathedral in Ascoli Piceno

The square itself includes two particular highlights: the Palazzo del Capitani del Popolo (1545) and, at the northern edge, the San Francesco Church. The Palazzo is a particularly fine building with a simple design incorporating an ornate entry and an oversized clock.


The lower and simpler arcaded buildings on the other side of the square are, in their own way, equally impressive. Also close to here you can see the 16th century trading centre, called the Loggia del Mercanti.

Head west and north through the town centre along the Via delle Torri towards the Trento river to explore the medieval centre of the town. This is the highlight of Ascoli Piceno, with unspoiled 13th-14th streets lined with ancient houses and sophisticated shops, and the occasional church.

There are also a couple of small interesting temples to discover in Ascoli-Piceno: the Sant'Emidio alle Grotte, with a baroque facade built against the rockface, and the Sant'Emidio Rosso, an octagonal red tower.

Keep going as far as the river to see a particularly impressive Roman bridge. There are also a few other Roman remnants to be seen in the town including a washhouse.

South of the centre, on Piazza Aringo, is the Pinacoteca with an interesting and substantial art collection featuring works by Titian and van Dyck, among others.

Rest and relaxation

Time for a rest so do as every visitor to Ascoli does and head for the Caffe Melletti, and choose whether to sit in the beautiful art nouveau interior or under the frescoed arches outside.

If your visit includes the second saturday in July or the first sunday in August, a splendid historical recreation known as the Quintina takes over the town, and you can watch a traditional jousting tournament.

You can find more local travel ideas in the Marche guide.

See also: 

Map of Ascoli Piceno and places to visit


Ascoli Piceno places to visit

Civitella del Tronto

Civitella del Tronto

Civitella del Tronto is a lovely village overlooked by the second largest fortress in Europe.

Civitella del Tronto guide


Teramo is the capital of the province and has a historical centre with Roman ruins.

Teramo guide


As well as the historic centre you will also enjoy the views from Fermo across the surrounding countryside

Fermo guide


Medieval Norcia retains an attractive centre with narrow streets and the Church of Saint Benedict among the sights

Norcia guide


Both the basilica in Tolentino itself and the nearby Abbey of Chiaravalle de Fiastra are unmissable highlights

Tolentino guide


A pretty hill village with a historical centre and great views.

Atri guide

...or see all our recommended places to visit in Marche

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