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Things To Do In PIEDMONT

Piedmont (Piemonte in Italian) is one of the 20 Italian regions. Sitting in the far northwest of the country, it neighbors France and Switzerland. The name “Piedmont” translates as “at the foot of the mountain,” and it’s no coincidence. In fact, Piedmont is surrounded on by the Alps three sides! Nonetheless, the wild ruggedness of its landscapes is complemented by the elegance of its aristocratic history. To put it bluntly, there are many exciting things to do in Piedmont and even more reasons for you to visit it!
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Explore Piedmont by CITIES

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In a breathtaking location at the foot of the perilous beauty of the Alps sits Turin, the capital of Piedmont. Though not as visited as Florence or Rome, it’s an extraordinary city, one like no other in Italy. A city that balances between the Parisian elegance of tree-lined boulevards and Viennese style of art nouveau cafes. Balances but doesn’t quite follow either, keeping a self-possessed ambience of nonchalance. The ancient palazzos and broad piazzas don’t fight but keep up with the innovation and design that bubbles within. Though you might not know much about Turin, here is where the Fiat cars, Juventus football team, Ferrero confectionery, Lavazza coffee, Martini-Bacardi, Campari, Asti Spumanto and the now-worldwide Slow Food movement come from; Here is where the journeys to discover Piedmont start and end. So, if you don’t know what to do in Piedmont, begin in Turin!

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Stresa, perhaps somewhat more than any other town on the shore of Lake Maggiore, resonates with the lake’s bygone decadence and compelling air of elegance. With a stunning view over the lake, the architectural reminders of belle époque along the waterfront stand witness to Stresa’s legacy. Being easily accessible from Milan, the town was a favorite refuge for artists and writers during the 19th century. Today, the town’s incredible countryside, architectural gems as well as a pleasant climate combine creating one of the most popular tourist destinations in Italy. In fact, Stresa is perfect for exploring the nearby Borromean Islands boasting imposing palaces and ornamental gardens. Here, the luxury villas and art nouveau hotels invite you for a peaceful stroll along the lakeside and cultural and music events keep the spirit of artsy sophistication alive and well. So, when you visit Piedmont, make sure Stresa is on your list.

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Orta San Giulio is a lovely lakeside town located in Piedmont’s province of Novara overflowing with that special northern Italian magic. In fact, this is quite probably one of the prettiest old lake towns you'll find anywhere in the world. Sitting on a piece of land that juts out like a peninsula, this little town decorates the shores of Lake Orta. It treats you to small beaches as well as year-round events induced with opportunities to dive into the historical and cultural fabric of the area. Besides its rustic architecture and intertwining narrow alleys, the town is the ideal gateway to the nearby island of San Giulio (Isola San Giulio). The island rests under a blanket of lush forest vegetation and a sprinkle of ancient chapels. It’s not hard to imagine why this place seduces travelers with such success. If you are wondering what to do in Piedmont that takes you off the beaten path, the well-kept Orta San Giulio and Lake Orta are the answer.

What Makes PIEDMONT Special

From the16th to the 19th century, the area of Piedmont sprouted from a minor duchy of Savoy to prosperous little kingdom. In fact, the Duchy became larger than modern Belgium! It covered the Alpine territory in what is today France, Switzerland, and Italy, adding Sardinia to the mix in the 18th century. When its capital relocated from Chambéry to Turin in 1563, the city and its surroundings exploded with new, opulent constructions. The expansion was carefully planned to reflect the latest Renaissance and alter Baroque trends. The Dukes of Savoy peppered the region with summer and winter residences, luxury hunting lodges, gardens, and parks. Luxury blossomed in an around their capital. So, if you ever get stuck thinking about what to do in Piedmont, visit one of these incredible places. Palazzo Reale, La Venaria Reale, Palazzo Carignano or the Royal Castle at Racconigi and many more await you!

Piedmont is a hotbed of cultural and culinary traditions, festivities and celebrations. Whatever time of year you stop by, you are likely to stumble upon one the events from the region’s busy cultural calendar. For instance, the capital brings you Turin Film Festival in November; Or, the small town of Alba celebrates its prized white truffle with Alba White Truffle Fair. Other events for foodies include delicious CioccolaTo or the biennial celebration of the Slow Food movement. Those with a taste for the old and medieval will love Asti's September Palio horse race. On the other hand, people who like a bit of mayhem should head to Ivrea’s Battle of Oranges (Battaglia delle Arance). Whatever makes you tick! However, if you don’t manage to catch any of the big events, there are plenty of opportunities to taste, smell, see and touch Piedmont’s cultural core. 

Piedmont is mountain-locked from three different sides making natural environment one of the region’s major attractions. Travelers from all around the world flock in Piedmont to spend their holidays against the unique backdrop of the Alps. Famous locations such as Sestriere, Val di Susa provide a wide range of spaces suitable for all kinds of activities including cross-country or steep downhill skiing, snowboarding and ice skating. On the other hand, thrill seekers have the chance to climb up the rocky mountains or raft down rushing rivers. If water is your natural force, you can enjoy sailing, canoeing or windsurfing on the shores of the magnificent Lake Maggiore. Cycling or mountain biking along one of Piedmont’s rivers is also quite popular. Moreover, where there are mountains, there are also spas! There is no better place to relax and regenerate than the Alps!

Things to do in PIEDMONT

Did you know Piedmont is Italy's second-largest region? Many argue it's also Italy’s most elegant. Why? Well, the grand palazzi and wines peppered all over the place kind of give it away. The region emerged strong and proud from the utter chaos of the Austrian wars. What’s even more important, it was the base of the Italian unification movement giving the country its first dynastic royal family (House of Savoy) and prime minister. 

Most quests in the exploration of the region begin in Turin, Piedmont’s dynamic and cultured capital. Its history reaches as far back as the Roman times through the elegance came later, during the 300-year rule of the Dukes of Savoy. The opulent palaces and elegant piazzas you see today are results of that period. Still, despite the city’s notable history, Turin was often ignored by travelers that is, until the Winter Olympic Games of 2006 open the world’s eyes to its treasures. Langhe and Roero provinces form the region's culinary heart; the birthplace of the Slow Food movement and home to Italy's top wines. Foodies, this is a place for you!

After all the food you might be hungry for some action. No need to worry, Piedmont won’t disappoint on any front! On the other side of the region, close to the Swiss border, sit the lakes, Maggiore and Orta. Having been seducing travelers since the 18th century, both lakes boasts excellent infrastructure and a wide array of activities, especially in the summer months. In winter, head for the mountains. The popular resorts in Val Chisone and Val di Susa are excellent for both skiing and hiking. 

For more ideas on things to do in Piedmont, explore the page! 

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