Orvieto is a medieval hill town that's delightful to visit, and also astonishing: this small town in Umbria is home to a giant cathedral that's one of Italy's finest.
Why on earth is it here? The history involves a priest, a doubt, a cloth, and a Pope.
A priest named Peter secretly had doubts about the Catholic Church doctrine of transubstantiation: the idea that, during Holy Mass, a wafer of bread truly becomes the Body of Christ. One day, the priest celebrated Mass in a small town and at the moment when he raised and consecrated the Host (the bread), it dripped blood on the alter linen. The priest took the linen to Orvieto, where Pope Urban IV was staying. The Pope declared a miracle, and soon after created the feast of Corpus Christi (Body of Christ.) He also promised Orvieto a new cathedral, to house the relics from the miracle.