Turin, the city of the Alps

The first cap­i­tal of Italy, is a ‘draw­ing room city' of el­e­gant por­ti­coes sur­rounded by green hills and, fur­ther afield, by ma­jes­tic moun­tains. This is Turin, a city renowned for its his­tory, cul­ture and nat­u­ral beau­ties.

Where Turin - - ESSENTIALS -

Turin was a Ro­man colony, the first cap­i­tal of Italy and an in­dus­trial city. From its ori­gins to the present time, Turin has had sev­eral dif­fer­ent in­car­na­tions, each of which has left pro­found traces in its ar­chi­tec­ture and ur­ban lay­out. Ex­tend­ing over a sur­face area of less than 150 square kilo­me­ters, crossed by the Po, the long­est river in Italy, Turin is char­ac­ter­ized by a checker­board- like grid of streets that makes get­ting your bear­ings easy.

One of the city's most dis­tinc­tive ar­chi­tec­tural fea­tures is its 18km of por­ti­coes – mostly lo­cated in the city cen­tre – which house shops and cafes. Its por­ti­coes, orig­i­nally de­signed to of­fer shade in the sum­mer and shel­ter from the rain, snow, and some­times the wind in win­ter, and its el­e­gant squares have given Turin the nick­name of a ‘ draw­ing room' city.

With the ex­cep­tion of a few streets in the cen­tre, which are off- lim­its to traf­fic (in­clud­ing the Quadri­latero Ro­mano and its shop­ping streets), the re­main­der of the city is open to traf­fic and most land­mark at­trac­tions are eas­ily ac­ces­si­ble by car. How­ever, be­ware of ac­cess reg­u­la­tion ‘ZTL Cen­trale', which is ac­tive Mon- Fri, 7.30am-10.30am and pro­hibits the cir­cu­la­tion of pri­vate ve­hi­cles and park­ing in the cen­tre of the city. This re­stric­tion does not, how­ever, ap­ply to taxis or chauf­fer driven hired cars. As an al­ter­na­tive, you can use pub­lic trans­port to get around the city. These in­clude buses, trams and the sub­way (metropoli­tana). The ‘metropoli­tana', a fully au­to­mated sub­way sys­tem, ex­tends for 13.2km and only in­cludes one line that con­nects the com­mune of Col­legno to the Torino Porta Nuova rail­way sta­tion (the city's main rail­way hub) and the Torino Porta Susa sta­tion, be­fore reach­ing the Lingotto Fiere ter­mi­nus.

Turin boasts an en­vi­able ge­o­graphic po­si­tion. It is sur­rounded by green hills that stand 715 me­tres above sea level, and which, in ad­di­tion to their nat­u­ral beauty, also of­fer nu­mer­ous cul­tural and his­tor­i­cal at­trac­tions. They can be reached in just a few min­utes by pub­lic trans­port, the Sassi-Superga tram or car. Turin is also an ideal base to reach sev­eral of Europe's most renowned ski re­sorts. It is there­fore not sur­pris­ing that the city is de­scribed as the ‘ Cap­i­tal of the Alps'.

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