Of remote origins, Parrano expanded considerably in the Middle Ages, starting with the castle, built around the year 1000 on Roman ruins, and the town fortifications. Before becoming a free commune in 1500 it was under the rule of nearby Orvieto and later under varying local seigniories. From the 16th century it became part of the papal States until the creation of the Kingdom of Italy (1860).
ART, CULTURE, ENVIRONMENT
Parrano features a well-preserved medieval centre secured around the castle protected by massive walls and the highly visible tall watch tower. It is a picturesque town with historical, archaeological, and natural treasures. In the vicinity, just below the town and of considerable archaeological and speleological interest are the Tane del Diavolo (Devil's Dens), karstic grottoes that open onto a precipitous limestone rock face above the Fosso del Bagno River. The archaeological value of the grottoes is enormous, particularly due to the discovery of implements from the Upper Paleolithic period. Today it is possible to take guided visits to the gorge or the grottoes along an itinerary offering a unique experience that combines nature with history and archaeology.
The district holds other surprises, such as the incredible presence of fossils. Walking along the fossil river we come to an intact pre-historic river bed still with its typical pebbles. Not far away is San Lazzaro's beach that bears witness to the ancient presence of the sea and its pre-historic inhabitants: bivalves, echinoderms, gastropods, and even some examples of pre-historic vertebrates (a shark-like tooth was found in 1998). Immersed in the luxuriant nature typical of Umbrian hills, Parrano is a much-appreciated tourist destination because of the numerous springs of magnesic sulphurous water particularly indicated for hydropic cures.