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The town, like the nearby village of Castel d’Arno, is linked to the Umbrian-Etruscan-Roman city of Arna, dating back to the 5th-4th centuries, situated in the territory between the Tiber and Chiascio rivers. It is probable that the name derives from the Latin "ripa", i.e. shore, as it overlooked the ancient lake "Umber", today dried up.
A settlement, of significant proportions, took place from 1266, when the city of Perugia had a sentinel castle built there towards the territory of Assisi and the Via Flaminia, characterised by circular external walls, with two main gates: Montarone, to the south, and Porticella, to the north.
In the main square you can see a fresco of the Madonna delle Grazie, of the Sienese school, dating back to the 14th century. There is also the church of Pieve di Santa Maria di Ripa, which was built between the 10th and 11th centuries by the Benedictine monks of the nearby monastery of San Giustino d’Arna; it then passed to the Templar Monks and the Knights of Malta.
In mid-June the town of Ripa comes alive with lights and colours for the Palio Arnense. This is an event dating back to 1600, which mixes the rural tradition with the historical commemoration of the feast of St. Anthony Abbot.
The villagers parade through the illuminated streets inside and outside the castle walls, dressed in noble and peasant clothes; then the two districts of Pieve and S. Emiliano challenge each other in the popular games of that time (tiro del funicchio, la morra, tiro della forma di formaggio and the corsa dell’accatto).
During the feast it is also possible to taste dishes that refer to that time, cooked with local products and here you can also have an almost 360° view of the surrounding valleys, from the plain of Assisi to that of Perugia.it is not a coincidence that this corner of Ripa is called "The Terrace of Umbria".