It is an essentially mountainous and hilly region, facing the Adriatic Sea. The mountain area is rugged, with narrow valleys, deep gorges and numerous rushing, sometimes inaccessible, streams (Gorge of Furlo). The coastline presents a succession of gently rolling hills and flat plains crossed by rivers.
Cities: The regional capital is Ancona. Other important cities are Ascoli Piceno, Pesaro, Urbino and Macerata.
Art: Numerous and remarkable remains of the Roman Age can be found in Ascoli, Fano, Ancona, Fermo, Urbisaglia and near Macerata. Outstanding examples of Romanesque architecture, with Byzantine elements, can be seen in the areas around Ancona and Ascoli. The Gothic style is present in Ascoli and Tolentino. The region reached its highest artistic splendor during the Renaissance, thanks to the presence of very important local artists, such as Raphael and Bramante.
Museums: In Ancona the National Museum of the Marches, with an interesting local archaeologic collection; the Diocesan Museum of the Cathedral, which houses interesting medieval relics; important pictorial works (Tiziano, Lotto) in the Pinacoteca Civica. A rich pictorial exhibition can be admired in the Pinacoteca Comunale of Ascoli. In Pesaro, the Civic Museums display paintings, ceramics of the famous Renaissance “botteghe” (art workshops) and archaeologic relics. In Urbino, the National Gallery of the Marches holds the most important collection of the Marchigiana art (Raphael, Tiziano, Piero della Francesca); in the Museo del Duomo “Albani”, fourteenth-century frescoes, paintings, ceramics and sacred relics can be admired; the native house of Raphael is interesting and deserves a visit. The Biblioteca Comunale of Macerata houses very ancient incunabula; in the Museum of the Carriages very rare specimens of ancient vehicles can be seen.
To be visited: On the seaside Fano, the coastline and the panoramic area of Mount Conero. Then, there are the Gorge of Furlo, Pesaro, and Urbino with its beautiful view and environs.