Is Turin worth visiting? I’m glad you asked! After being inspired by a couple of movies on Netflix and finding a great flight deal, I booked a one-week trip to the Italian city and discovered a destination that should be on every Europe lover’s bucket list.
Turin has SO MUCH to offer, and it’s definitely one of the best places to visit in northern Italy, but if you’re not sure what makes it a must-see city, here are all the reasons to explore it at least once.
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IS TURIN WORTH VISITING? ALL THE REASONS WHY THE ANSWER IS YES
IT’S A LOT LESS TOURISTY THAN OTHER ITALIAN CITIES
I hope it’s not your first time here, so maybe you know by now how much I love discovering underrated places in Europe.
Obviously, Italy is a highly popular destination, but I bet you thought about visiting Rome, Tuscany, and Venice before you even set your eyes on Turin (which is totally fine).
It’s funny because it is the fourth largest city in Italy, and it offers so many things to do and see, but it doesn’t have that reputation, so it’s easy to skip out on it.
So if you’re looking for a city that has yet to be discovered by too many international travelers, Turin is for you.
THIS CITY IS STEEPED IN FASCINATING HISTORY
I know this is something you can say about so many cities, but Italy literally wouldn’t be Italy without Turin.
We can go all the way back to when the Taurini tribe settled here or when the Romans established a town called Augusta Taurinorum (see where it got its name from?), but it was more than a millennium later that Turin really gained its importance.
Turin got to be the capital city of the Duchy of Savoy, the Kingdom of Sardinia, and the unified Kingdom of Italy. In fact, it was the latter’s first capital city, so it was (and is) seen as a symbol of Italian liberty.
It’s difficult to sum up Turin’s history in a couple of sentences, so luckily, you’ll find plenty of museums and landmarks across the city that will help you immerse yourself in everything it has witnessed. Don’t worry – I’m just about to mention a few.
THE LANDMARKS ARE REMARKABLE
Considering its history, it’s obvious you’re going to find some incredible landmarks in Turin, which make it one of the most beautiful cities in Italy.
One listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site is a group of palaces and villas in and around the city – the Residences of the Royal House of Savoy.
Those include the impressive Palazzo Reale, Palazzo Madama, Villa della Regina, Reggia di Venaria Reale, and more. It’s a real privilege to tour them, and they are one of the best reasons to visit Turin.
Other must-see landmarks in the city are the Duomo di Torino (Turin Cathedral), Gran Madre di Dio Church, Medieval Village, Mole Antonelliana (the most prominent building in Turin’s skyline), and the list goes on and on.
THE MUSEUMS ARE NOT TOO SHABBY EITHER
Whether you consider yourself a museum lover or not, it’s pretty impossible not to enjoy at least several of Turin’s museums.
From the interactive Lavazza Museum (dedicated to the history of the coffee empire and the entire production process) to the National Automobile Museum and its jaw-dropping collection of vehicles to the unique Egyptian Museum, this city will blow your mind.
TURIN IS THE BIRTHPLACE OF SOME OF THE WORLD’S GREATEST JOYS
It’s pretty amazing to think how many everyday-life necessities and joys were born in Turin. I didn’t know it until recently, and you’d probably be surprised too that:
– Lavazza, one of the best Italian coffee brands, was founded in Turin in the late 19th century.
– The people of Turin were the first to produce solid chocolate (before that, it had been consumed as a beverage).
– Vermouth, the famous fortified and aromatized wine, was created in Turin in the 18th century. It also led to the beginning of the aperitivo tradition.
– Before Nutella, as we know it today, was invented by Pietro Ferrero, the original spread of chocolate and hazelnuts – Gianduja – was born in Turin in the late 18th century.
– Fiat (Fabbrica Italiana Automobili di Torino), the largest automobile manufacturer in Italy, opened its first factory in Turin.
That’s why some of the best things to do in Turin include creating your own self-guided chocolate and aperitivo tours, visiting the Lavazza Museum, and exploring the National Automobile Museum.
In addition, this city also played its part in the history of Italian fashion, Italian skiing, and so many other areas.
YOU CAN ENJOY IT AT ALMOST ANY BUDGET
It may come as a surprise, but it’s true – you can enjoy the best of Turin on both a high AND a tight budget. First of all, from hostels to luxury hotels, it is possible to find accommodation no matter what your budget is.
To devour yummy food, you can find fantastic restaurants (like Cianci Piola and Poormanger) serving local dishes for as little as 5-6 euros, as well as mid-range and high-end restaurants.
Last but not least, attractions in Turin can be pricey (and there are dozens of them), but thanks to the Torino+Piemonte Card, you can visit most of them for free (it saved me A LOT of money).
You can also try some budget-friendly activities like this free walking tour of Turin.
YOU CAN EVEN VISIT IT IN WINTER
If you’re looking to spend Christmas in Italy, Turin can be a fantastic European winter city break. As much as Italy is fun to explore from spring to fall, don’t rule out visiting it in November, December, January, or February.
Even though Turin’s streets are not as heavily decorated as other cities’ (like Vienna or London), it still feels festive, and you can also enjoy its Christmas markets and snowy days. Also, it can be a great European girls’ trip destination.
For more inspiration, read my post about visiting Turin in the winter.
IT’S HOME TO SOME BEAUTIFUL STREETS AND SQUARES
Not every neighborhood in Turin is ‘pretty’ or ‘enchanting,’ but the city center and a few other districts definitely have their charm.
Head to stunning Italian squares like Piazza San Carlo and Piazza Carignano, wander through the city’s covered porticoes around Piazza Castello, and walk along Via Garibaldi, and I know you’ll be hooked.
THIS CITY BREAKS RECORDS
Ready for a few more fun facts about Turin? Because if it’s not enough that it was Italy’s first capital and the birthplace of things we can’t live without, it’s also:
– Home to the world’s tallest museum – the National Museum of Cinema, housed in the Mole Antonelliana.
– Home to the oldest Egyptian museum in the world, which boasts the second-largest collection of Egyptian antiquities after the one in Cairo.
– Where the first Italian film screening took place (back in the late 19th century).
– Home to the largest Baroque square in Europe – Piazza Vittorio Veneto.
I can go on and on because this city is truly surprising, but I guess you’ll have to book a flight to Turin to keep discovering its secrets.
IT’S A PERFECT DESTINATION FOR CHOCOHOLICS AND PASTRY & DESSERT LOVERS
Anyone with a constant sweet tooth and an addiction to carbs like me will be obsessed with Turin.
I’ve talked a bit about its connection to chocolate, but it really is amazing to see how many chocolate shops you can find in this city.
Don’t miss Caffarel, Guido Castagna, and Guido Gobino, but you’ll come across many others. Also, be sure to try the delicious Gianduiotto chocolate treat and Baci di Dama cookies.
Turin is also packed with cafes and pasticcerias (pastry shops/bakeries) serving the most incredible pastries and desserts.
For breakfast, enjoy a cup of coffee with a buttery croissant filled with pistachio or vanilla pastry cream, and after lunch, indulge yourself with a French-style dessert.
YOU CAN DEVOUR DELICIOUS PIEDMONTESE FOOD
Italian food is the best in the world, as I’m sure many would agree. Every region has its delicacies, and Piedmont is no exception.
In Turin, the capital of the region, you can devour Agnolotti (small stuffed pasta), Gnocchi al Castelmagno (gnocchi with a sauce made of a special Piedmontese cheese), Tajarin (a type of egg pasta), Risotto al Barolo, and many more hearty Piedmontese dishes.
IT’S A FANTASTIC DESTINATION FOR ITALIAN FOOTBALL FANS
I love European football, so how can I not enjoy a city like Turin, which is the home of Juventus, one of the most successful and iconic Italian teams.
Attending a game is always a fun experience because the energy is out of this world, but the Juventus Museum (located in the stadium) is also open to visitors.
IT’S AN ELEGANT CITY, BUT EVERYONE IS WELCOME
As I’ve mentioned, not all of Turin’s neighborhoods are ‘beautiful,’ but you can see its northern Italian elegance and understand why it was chosen to be a royal city.
That said, it doesn’t feel cold or ‘too exclusive’ that you feel like you don’t belong. The locals are extremely friendly and helpful, the streets are full of life, and it just knows how to make you feel welcome.
IT’S EASY TO TAKE DAY TRIPS FROM TURIN
While Turin can definitely be the starting point of a scenic Italian road trip, it’s also easy to take some day trips by public transport.
A few must-see places like the Palace of Venaria and Stupinigi Royal Hunting Lodge are quite close and reachable by bus.
You can also easily visit plenty of other nearby towns and cities like Rivoli, Cuneo, Alessandria, and Ivrea by bus or train.
IT’S A GREAT DESTINATION FOR A LONG(ISH) GETAWAY
If you’re looking for a city where you can spend more than a weekend, Turin is the place for you.
You can easily fill up an itinerary of at least 4-6 days without leaving the city at all, and if you’re also taking day trips or a road trip, you can plan a much longer trip.
That said, you can also enjoy Turin in 2-3 days.
ITALY IS ALWAYS A GOOD IDEA
For me, countries like Italy, Spain, Portugal, and other beloved European destinations never disappoint.
Wherever I’ll travel to, I’ll be happy – I’ll surely find great things to do and see, I’ll immerse myself in the local culture, and I’ll enjoy the views (urban or rural), the food, and the people.
So if this entire post hasn’t convinced you yet that Turin is worth a visit, just remember that it’s a part of a wonderful country called Italy, which is impossible not to fall in love with.
Read more about Italy and northern Italy:
- Best places to stay in Turin
- Tips for visiting Turin
- Hidden gems in Turin
- Northern Italy road trip
- Things to do in Vicenza
- Best places to visit in Lombardy, Italy
- Hidden gems of northern Italy
- Road trips from Milan
- Italy travel quotes
- Gifts for Italy lovers
- Romantic novels set in Italy
- Places to visit in winter in Italy
- Is Porto worth visiting
- Is Warsaw worth visiting
- Is Cordoba worth visiting
- Is Cadiz worth visiting
- Is Poznan worth visiting
- Is Madrid worth visiting
- Reasons to visit Mallorca
- Reasons to visit Budapest
- Reasons to visit northern Spain
- Reasons to visit Malta
- Reasons to visit Crete
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