Planning a trip to Italy you might not think about Turin (or better Torino) among the cities you would put in your list.
Very wrong! Turin has been the first capital city of Italy and it has been the site of Savoia Kings: this means nice buildings, a lot of history and gorgeous food.
That’s why we will tell you the 10 top things to see & do in Turin so that you can indeed include this beautiful city among the ones to absolutely visit in Italy.
This is Torino symbol, as Tour Eiffel is for Paris.
Built to be a synagogue, it was rejected by the Jewish community and returned to the municipality due to the long time it took to built it.
It hosts now the Cinema Museum, being Torino the first city in Italy where the cinema and TV industry flourished.
Don’t miss the top of it: you can reach the balcony at the height of 90 meters with a crystal elevator that allows to appreciate the inside of the dome. The view from high up is wonderful: all the city at your feet and the alps on the background
Second in the world after the one of Cairo, the Egyptian museum is indeed a not to miss in Torino.
This in case you are staying more than one day, since it take almost half a day to visit it in a decent way.
Take the audioguide and stroll around all the rooms. You will be surprised when reaching the ones with the huge statues.
MAUTO – Automobile Museum
Torino is well known for the car industry. It has been the city where the italian car industries born. I used the plural since at the very beginning of the 20th century in Torino downtown several car industries started to produce their 3 or 4 wheels cars and it become famous for this product. Then FIAT became the first italian car producer and many many time Torino has been pictured as the car producer city.
Also thanks to this historical heritage, in torino there is the best Automobile Museum in Italy that describes the birth of the automotive industry and follows the steps decade by decade.
A not to miss for the most interested, but very goo to visit also for those that are not into cars at all.
Torino, as all other cities in Italy, has a lot of churches, however one of the most famous id the Duomo, the Cathedral that is right behind the Royal Palace.
Why is it so famous worldwide? Because it’s hosting the Holy Shroud.
The Holy Shroud is protected in a religuary and not shown to the public, however visiting the Duomo you can see a copy and read the story and the explanation related to it.
Torino has kept its old layout as roman castrum: all streets are parallel and perpendicular. There are still some roman ruins visible in the center, same as the medieval part of the city that deserves a special tour.
The Quadrilatero romano (Roman squared area) is a trendy area for restaurants, cafes and clubs.
It’s nice to visit during the day since there you can find several shops, boutiques and antiques, but in the evening is a must be place where to enjoy a nice aperitivo before dinner, a typical piemontese dinner or an after dinner.
One of the cafes you cannot miss is the historical “Il Bicerin” where you have to try the bicerin: coffee with chocolate and fresh cream.
One of my favourite squares in Torino is Piazza Carignano.
Here you can really feel the atmosphere Torino used to have when the kings were still there.
On one side of the square you have Teatro Carignano, one of the oldest theater in town, a real jewel. Next to it the famous and Michelin starred restaurant Del Cambio that deserves a visit (on saturday morning they are usually organizing free tours – just check their Facebook page).
On the other side of the Theater a famous cafè: Pepino. Nice to stop there for a coffee, but even nicer for a “pinguino” (literally penguin) an ice cream invented here made of vanilla ice cream coated with dark chocolate.
In front of Carignano Theater you can find Palazzo Carignano, first site of theitalian Parliament.
Palazzo Carignano and the National Museum of Italian Renaissance
Palazzo Carignano is also hosting the National Museum of Italian Reinassance where you can find the history of Italy starting even before its union in 1861.
The Palace is really special. One façade, the one facing Piazza Carignano, is made of red brick and in baroque style. The other one, that you can glance by crossing the inner court and exit on Piazza Carlo Alberto, is made of white marbles and pink stucco in eclectic style.
On one of the main and biggest squares of Torino, Piazza Castello, we find the Royal Palace.
This was the residence of Kings and Queens and still is furnished with original furniture.
If you like royal sites, you cannot miss a visit. You will manage to see several and interesting paintings and discover the history of the Savoia family and how Torino was important during their reign.
Willing to move a bit outside the city center and enjoy a wonderful view, we suggest to head up to Superga hill.
The trip itself is very pictoresque, as to go up there you have to take a rack train climbing up the hill.
On bright days you can enjoy a gorgeous view on the city and on the mountains surrounding Torino.
Moreover on the top of the hill you can find the Basilica built as a vow after a victory against the French army where almost all Savoia Kings and Queens are buried.Valentino Park and Castle
Valentino Park and Castle
To take a walk in the nature inside the city, instead, our suggestion is to go to Valentino Park. There you can find a wonderful castle, today site of architecture faculty, and a medieval hamlet.
The medieval part is not original, but has been built on demand of the King representing one of the medieval castle in Aosta Valley.-
The medieval village is always active and during weekend there are visits and very often art events are happening there.