Will be in Florence end of this month. Want to hear if it's doable to train from Florence to Assisi, then to Perugia in one day. Plan is - shopping at my favorite ceramics shop in Assisi in the AM, then train to Perugia by afternoon for the Chocolate Festival that closes at 8PM. I know that we have to bus from the train station in Assisi to the town, and that the train is @2.45 hours from Florence to Assisi, and@ 30 min Assisi to Perugia and @2.45 hours Perugia to Florence. Going with my daughter and she doesn't want to take the train both days that far, i.e. one day just to Assisi and back to Florence, then the next day Florence to Perugia and back. We have a package deal with hotel just in Florence as the base. Other thought was to pay extra for a hotel in Perugia and stay there one night then continue on to Assisi the next day for the shopping spree...seems we'd end up spending about $70 more to do this by getting a hotel. Confused? So am I.
Ellen, you have it correct. It's a good 5.0+ hours round trip on the train. We've done it. As for the bus in Assisi, it's easy. First the train station is actually in Santa Maria degli Angeli and not Assisi. Second, walk to the small shop next door to the train station and buy a ticket for the bus. The Line C bus goes all the way to the top of the town. This makes it easy as the hills are steep. Starting from the top, you can walk down. If you leave Florence early, you can see quite a lot. My wife and daughter were just there and they too were looking for the ceramic place. You might want to carefully consider when you want to come down to the train station in Assisi to go to Perugia. According to the Trenitalia train website, the last train to Florence departs Perugia at 19:39 (7:39pm). Thus, you won't have the opportunity to stay until 8:00pm. My wife and daughter were planning the tour at the chocolate factory but it was 1.5-2hrs. They didn't do it.
FYI-there is now a fast train from Florence to Assisi. The trip takes about 30 minutes and might be worth the price for you. Even with the fast train you'll definitely have a full day of traveling :)
Ellen, You should also know that the historic center of Perugia is on a hill above the train station.
You will need to take a 15 min bus, mini metro, or taxi ride up to the area. (It is not walkable)