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Discover Piemonte : You will be dazzled by its diversity !

In recent years Piedmont has developed a reputation as an Italian foodie paradise, which is rooted in the region’s bounty of white truffles, vineyards that produce some of the country’s finest wines and the fact that it’s where the slow food movement began.

From the Alps in the north to the UNESCO-protected wine region in the south, these are Culture Trip’s top towns and villages in this delectable part of Italy.

Lake Orta

Lake Orta has been hailed as the‘Italian lake tourists haven’t discovered’and is just 90 minutes from the region’s capital,Turin. The charming village of San Giulio is located on a promontory that juts out into the water, giving it the appearance of floating on the lake. The village hosts the festival Ortafiori in April and May, a large feast and display of blooming flowers in the streets. Take a boat trip to the lake’s tiny Isola San Giulio, or use it as a base to hike and admire the surrounding hills.


Lake Maggiore is another of Northern Italy’s big lakes, bordering both Lombardy (on the east shore) and Piedmont (west shore). In the Piedmont province of Verbano-Cusio-Ossola, Stresa is the lake’s main resort town, offering regular ferries to the beautiful and quirky Borromean islands. The Grand Hotel is where Ernest Hemingway famously wrote part of his moving novel A Farewell to Arms, in which the main characters flee World War I by rowing across Lake Maggiore to safety. In addition to the lake, tourists can take a cable car that travels to the top of Mount Mottarone in just 20 minutes; here visitors will find fresh mountain air, panoramic views of the landscape and several hiking trails.


The vineyard-covered landscapes of Piedmont’s Langhe-Roero and Monferatto regions have been recognised as UNESCO World Heritage Sites. South of Turin, between the Po River and Ligurian Apennines, the area is celebrated for producing world-renowned wines from ancient grape varieties. The village of Barolo is at the heart of producing the mighty red wine, Barolo, from Nebbiolo grapes. Vineyard tours and wine tastings aside, the village’s main attraction is the medieval Castello Falletti. Otherwise, it is a chill place made for leisurely walks, sipping espresso and trying new gelato flavours.


The town of Alba, also located in the protected Langhe region, has Italy’s highest concentration of Michelin-starred restaurants and is at the heart of Piedmont’s white truffle season between September and January as the host of an annual festival dedicated to the gastronomic delicacy every October. Aside from being a foodie heaven, Alba is the quintessential fortified medieval town with a soaring 12th-century gothic cathedral, Cattedrale di San Lorenzo, at its centre. On Saturdays, the whole town is occupied by a classic Italian street market selling fresh produce, clothing and jewelry.


One of the many pretty wine bars in the historic village of Neive, Piedmont

If you walk along Neive’s cobbled streets of rusty-hued cottages, you’ll catch glimpses of the surrounding verdant hills. It is another typical Langhe village with a mixture of buildings from the 13th to the 18th century centred around several plazas, which are lively with village life. Located just northeast of Alba, the town of Neive has some of the same gastronomic delights but with less fanfare and fewer tourists.


Asti’s fascinating medieval history is apparent in its vast gothic cathedral (the largest in the region) and imposing turreted castle. After a rivalry with nearby Alba was resolved, it was proclaimed an independent city-state in 1095. Due to its strategic position, it garnered enough power and wealth to mint its coins. Like Siena in Tuscany, it also hosts one of Italy’s oldest Palio competitions (medieval horse races) every September; records of a Palio event from 1275 suggest it’s been a longstanding tradition. What Asti is best known for, however, is for being at the centre of the landscape that produces Asti Spumante and Moscato d’Asti, two celebrated sparkling white wines made from the Moscato Bianco grape. You can sample them at one of the town’s many charming wine bars or venture to a nearby winery for a formal tasting. "Apericena" or a glass of wine with fingerfood, is a longstanding tradition here.

CastelNuovo Don Bosco

A charming town between Langhe and Turin, attractive because of its beautiful landscapes, wineries and villages accross where hiking and trailing will give you insights in this "undiscovered" area of Piemonte.

Don't forget to stop by for a glass of wine at Cascina Gilli

Written by ConsultED, 26th August 2023

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