Turin is a beautiful city in North Italy and it is going to host the Eurovision Song Contest in May 2022. Thanks to Maneskin’s victory, the popular kermesse is coming to Italy and most precisely to my city. Maybe you have already heard about Turin as host city of the 2006 Olympic Winter Games. But if you want reasons to come here for Eurovision, a short break holiday or a longer stay, here are some reasons to tickle your curiosity.
1. Turin is the city of Chocolate
If you can find Nutella at your local supermarkets, well it is thanks to Turin. Or more precisely to the Royal house pastry makers who, in the 19 century, found it hard to prepare chocolate delicacies for the Royal family. Due to an economic block imposed by Napoleon, Turin suffered a lack of cocoa beans. But you know, if there is something Italians never run out, that is imagination. The pastry makers mixed the little cocoa they had with hazelnuts, a produce of our region, Piedmont. They invented Gianduja, which takes its name for a popular actor of that time, declined in many ways: cream, pralines, cakes and ice-cream. The little pyramid-shaped chocolate were invented by Caffarel, while Ferrero later started the mass production.
Many are the artisanal chocolate makers in the city. Just visit the ancient cafeterias in the centre and you will be delighted by the incredible amounts of treat you can find. If you prefer, you can even book dedicated tours organized by the Tourist Board.
2. Turin is one of the points of the White Magic Triangle…
With Lyon and Prague, Turin is one of the points of the white magic triangle. The city has a lot of legends and many are the points where the white magic finds its source. The objects that is supposed to be at the centre of all energies is the Holy Shroud, kept in the Guarini Chapel at the Dome of San Giovanni.
According to another rumor, one of the statues in front of the Grand Madre Church is looking at the place where the Holy Graal is hidden.
A fountain in Piazza Solferino hides the entrance of the alchemic caves. By entering the alchemic caves, you will get the entire knowledge of the universe. In case you cannot find them, there is still the possibility to enter one of our many Universities!
3. …and also one of the Black Magic Triangle
Together with London and San Francisco, we have also a lot of dark and creepy places. And no, I am not talking about the house of my former boyfriend.
Piazza Solferino hides secret corners while the building which hosts the Labour Bank has a door which appeared a night all of a sudden and it seems was brought there by the devil in person. We can say many things about the devil but we have to agree he is everything but lazy.
4. A black and white city: Juventus
So, having both the white and the black magic, Turin is the only city boasting a sort of balance. Light and darkness, bad and good, yin and yan. But I know what you are thinking of: it is also the city of Juventus. Now, can you keep a secret? I can’t. If you want to meet the football players, go to Piazzetta Maria Teresa. They generally love to chill in one of the cafeterias of that lovely square.
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5. Turin is a cultural city
We have more than 50 museums, among which the most important Egyptian Museum in Europe, second only to that of Cairo. Here you can visit a vertical museum, Museo del Cinema, hosted in the symbol of the city: Mole Antonelliana.
But we also have fairs all year long, a readers’ club, art galleries, book fairs, royal palaces, churches and temples. Many are the events that the city organizes.
And if you plan to visit more than two museums, consider to buy the museum pass to save money.
Not only chocolate. Turin has a great food tradition. From the handmade spaghetti called tajarin, to braised meat cooked in the Barolo wine, veal served with a delicious tuna sauce, risotto with truffles, a great selection of local cheeses and cold cuts. We are also famous for raw meat and a special variety of read meat called Fassona.
Without forgetting the sweets and the small “pasticceria”. These are little pastries that can be eaten with one small bite. Invented again for the Royal family who, in this way, could eat them without getting dirty, we can say that the Turin “pasticcini” are the ancestors of cupcakes and finger food.
7. …and wine
Barolo is the king of wines and is produced in the Lange area, one hour far from Turin. Many are the wine shops were you can find not only the precious Barolo, but also other wines produced in Piedmont like Barbera, Barbaresco, Asti. My favourite is a red sparkling sweet wine called Brachetto, to pair with Tiramisu or Bunet, two renowned local desserts.
8. The parks
Turin is a green city. From Valentino Park, near the city centre, to Pellerina, a huge green lung, many are the area where you can practice sports, run, take a stroll or have an urban picnic. My favorite is Parco Dora, where concrete becomes playground, the remains of old factories are turned into backdrops for graffiti and canals and rivers pierce the industrial city with natural elements. Hip hop and zen in the same place.
9. Spots for romantic souls
The Po river embraces the city from north to south. Along the banks you can find parks, walking paths, bars and restaurants. Many face the river and, to me, are the perfect location for a romantic dinner. Like being in Paris without being in Paris. And I bet you will find many similarities between Turin and the French capital.
It is difficult to define Turin from the historical point of view. This city presents a Roman door, Medieval buildings, Baroque Churches, Palaces and cafeterias, Liberty buildings, Industrial corners. 2000 years of history seems concentrated in a city that has always kept a low profile, but has been the protagonists of all the main events of our history. And we are ready to host the Eurovision Song Contest with the same mood: Good Evening Ladies and Gentleman, maybe you do not know us, but for sure, you won’t forget us.