Piedmont (or Piemonte) means at the foot of the mountains, which is an apt description for this region that stretches across valleys encircled by the French, Italian and Swiss Alps. This crown of snow-peaked mountains surrounds the city of Torino giving it an aura of regal beauty.
The geographical proximity to France made Piemonte vulnerable to French cultural influence and political dominance throughout the centuries, which has left its mark to some extent in the local cuisine and the Piemontese dialect, many words of which retain their French origin.
From the very first day, with opportunities to visit the world-renowned Museo Egizio, second in the world after Cairo, or the Museo Nazionale del Cinema (National Cinema Museum), or just strolling through the streets looking for the latest fashions, one gets a sense of an understated elegance, a trademark of this city.
A city with more than a touch of class, faithful to revered social customs like a mid-afternoon "bicerin", a rich mix of melted chocolate, coffee and milk, or the early evening "aperitivo" that is served in the beautiful, historical sidewalk cafés that flank the elegant piazzas, something that we will have the opportunity to indulge in.
The remainder of our stay in Torino will find us strolling through Porta Palazzo, the largest open-air market in Europe, where one can see the freshest display of succulent porcini mushrooms and more varietals of fruits and vegetables than is imaginable.
The city tour would not be complete without seeing it from the vantage point of Superga. We will climb high up on the hills surrounding Torino where at the summit stands the Basilica, a landmark conceived by the famous Italian architect Juvarra in 1731. This is a great vantage point from which we can admire beautiful, unforgettable vistas of the city surrounded by snow-capped mountains. In a subterranean mausoleum the Basilica houses the tombs of the Savoy Royal Family in surroundings displaying magnificent sculptures by the local artists of the XI and XVII centuries.
We will continue on to the beautiful expanse of Piazza Castello, the heart of the city, from which we will gain access to the most important landmarks. There is shopping for the best of Italian fashions along the elegant Via Roma and the many side streets of the "centro."
It truly is a must to stop in stylish and elegant Torino for this most unforgettable oenogastronomic Italian experience!
* This tour may be booked in conjunction with Slow Food's Salone del Gusto held in Torino bi-annually, next edition October 2012. It may also be combined with our other Piemonte tours, or with any other tours to other Italian regions. Simply contact Shop Wine and Dine for further details.
Please contact Shop Wine and Dine for additional details