Turin – The Perfect Place For Culture And Food Lovers
The renovated Egyptian Museum has the most important collection of Egyptian treasure outside Cairo. Highlights include a fine statue of Ramses II and the world’s largest papyrus collection. Afterwards, stroll to central Piazza Castello, dominated by the part-medieval, part-Baroque Palazzo Madama.
Named for its most famous barfly, the Count of Cavour, this beautiful upstairs drinking room combines a magical, mirrored setting with a great collection of contemporary art. Drop by for an aperrtivo-Italy’s famed pre-dinner drink and snack. If it’s too difficult to tear yourself away from such luxury, there’s a bar menu until midnight.
BANCO VINI E ALIMENTI
A new-breed hybrid restaurant-bar-deli, this smartly designed place does clever selections of small dishes, such as scallop carpaccio with lime yoghurt. While the vibe might be casual wine bar, don’t underestimate the food: this is serious Piedmontese cooking.
Join the crowds at Europe’s largest food market, where hundreds of stalls spill out onto the piazza. There’s a large covered fish and meat section, but the main fascination lies in the organic-produce area, where you can forage for big bags of grissini and small wheels of Tomino di Talucco cheese.
MUSEO NAZIONALE DELL’AUTOMOBILE
As the birthplace of one of the world’s leading car manufacturers (the ‘T’ in Fiat stands for Torino), Turin is the obvious place for a car museum. This modem pilgrimage site is a city highlight three miles south of the centre, not far from the 1920s Lingotto factory. Expect a rollercoaster journey through car history, design and pollution issues.
The symbol of Turin, this 167m tower with its distinctive spire appears on the Italian two-cent coin. Begun in 1862, it was intended to be a synagogue, but never used as such; it now houses the Museo Nazionale del Cinema. For dazzling 360-degree views, take the panoramic lift to the 85m-high outdoor viewing deck.
Opened in 1856, this 136 acre, French-style park kisses the banks of the River Po and is filled with joggers, promenaders and lovers night and day. Walk off any food excesses here, strolling south along the river to arrive at the Castello del Valentino -a gorgeous château built in the 17th century, now used only for special events – and beyond it a mock medieval village from 1882.
The Slow Food phenomenon began in Turin and supermarket Eataly serves as something of a mothership, with two sites in town. The original Lingotto base, in a converted factory, houses a staggering array of sustainable food and drink, plus kitchenware, cookbooks and specialist lunch counters. There’s also the smaller, more central branch, Eataly Incontra.
Contemporary-art lovers could devote a whole day to Turin’s galleries, but if there’s time for only one, make it the Galleria Civica d’Arte Moderna e Contemporanea. It has 45,000 works in its vaults dedicated to artists including De Chirico, Otto Dix and Klee. It’s great on postwar Italy, featuring Paolini, Boetti, Anselmo, Penone and Pistoletto.