Turin is a lovely city and even though I am not a city person I must admit that there is something different about Turin when I compare it to other Italian cities like Rome or Milan. Maybe it is because of its proximity to the mountains or maybe because of the elegant buildings that characterise its wide roads and huge squares. All I know is that this is one of my favourite cities in Italy, also because it is home to my favourite football team Juventus. The main purpose of this trip was to attend to a match, however I couldn’t miss the opportunity to visit the nearby splendid attractions both in Piemonte region as well as in France’s Provence region, which is only 90 minutes away by car.
To be honest hiring a car while staying in the city was not the best idea I ever had. Driving along Corso Vittorio Emanuele, the busiest road of Turin (where we were staying) was a nightmare and at each turn in the main roads of the city I was risking my life! However once you get out of the city the risk is compensated with breathtaking views of the Alps. If like me you cannot resist getting out of the city, here are some suggestions when you visit Turin.
Avigliana is half an hour away from the city centre and is mainly famous for its twin lakes. The view gets even more spectacular at sunset where the lakes get a tint of pink. You can also combine Avigliana with a visit to the nearby Sacra di San Michele, a monastery on top of a hill which boasts spectacular aerial views of Avigliana as well as Val di Susa.
Valli di Lanzo
This image has been taken in the beautiful valley of Lanzo, precisely in Lanzo Torinese. The river banks are a natural park and the most remarkable landmark of this valley is Ponte del Diavolo. The crystal clear river waters of the Lanzo river flow calmly southwards to meet the Po river later on in the valley. This spot is just 30 minutes away from Turin airport, making it an ideal stop on the day of your arrival or departure.
Briançon and Montgenèvre
Small lost villages are always my favourite spots and Briançon did not fail to impress me. This quaint village in the heart of the mountains ticks all the boxes that a typical French village in Provence has to offer: winding alleys in which to get lost, souvenir shops that sell typical local delicacies, breathtaking views of the mountains and delicious food to indulge in. How can you not fall in love which such villages?! On the way to this village there is also a skiing resort named Montgenèvre located exactly on the border between Italy and France. Here you can stop and take in fresh mountain air, admire the views of the wooden houses with white mountains in the background, apart from practising some Winter sports of course.