Torino, love at first sight.
January 1, 1970
by Wandergirl Sofie
Love at first sight
I fell in love with Torino 6 years ago, while I was on Erasmus in a small town called Pavia (near Milano). It was love at first sight. In May 2016 I went back to rediscover this beautiful city and to visit some friends.
While walking through the narrow streets of Torino, with the high, old buildings and the gelaterias, I felt back at home. Turin has a distinctively Northern Italian feel an I really missed that. I can easily imagine living here.
After my city walk I bought a piece of focaccia and some pastries and sat down on a bench in a cozy park, near the train station Porta Nova. The park is called Giardino Sambuy, young people come here to chat and old people come here to play cards. A really nice atmosphere!
I bought my delicious food in a place called El Pan D’na Volta. Very friendly staff and a lot of choice! I really loved it. After enjoying my time in the park, I went to grab an ice cream at my favorite gelateria in the whole world, called Grom (Piazza Pietro Paleocapa). The ice cream from Grom is 100% natural and its ingredients do not contain flavorings, colors or preservatives of any kind. My favorite flavors are Cioccolato, with Peruvian chocolate and caramello al sale with caramel and Himalayan pink salt, a real party for my taste buds!
Down the river side: Piazza Vittorio – Monte dei Cappuccini
In the evening I met with Marco, a really nice Italian guy that I met in a hostel in Barcelona. He is a real local, so he could show me the best kept secrets of Torino. We had a very expensive drink at a terrace at Piazza Vittorio. We forgot that it was aperitivo time, which means when you buy a cocktail, the food is included. Piazza Vittorio is the biggest square of Turin and it is quite impressive. It is s at the side of the river Po and from here you have a nice view on the Gran Madre di Dio church, an imposing building on the other side.
On the other side you can also find Monte dei Cappuccini, It is a 30 minute walk from the center upon a hill. You have such a wonderful view for free. You can see the city with the backdrop of the mountains (Alps), it is really amazing, I think it is the most magical place of Torino.
Let’s grab some food in Manhattan!
After my drink with Marco, he took me on his motorcycle to an amazing restaurant called Manhattan, outside the city center. This is one of the coolest places in Turin to go and grab a dish of pasta/pizza. The portions are HUGE, we were with a group of 10 persons and we ordered the biggest pizza I have ever seen. It was like 10 different kinds of pizza in one. They bring you the pasta still in the pan so basically two persons can eat one portion. It is reallye easy to share the food. It is not expensive at all and the food is sooooo good, real Italian meals! The atmosphere is really nice and the part outside is a lovely place to sit. It is a place where you can relax with a big group of friends.
Lets grab some culture in the Egyptian museum!
The next day I went to the recently renovated Egyptian museum with Ekaterina, the girl from my Airbnb who comes from Russia. The museum is the second largest and the oldest Egyptian Museum in the world. It is a very impressive museum. I could not believe the scale of this exhibition. It was very beautiful and interesting, and we got an incredibly detailed audio guide. We spend 3 hours in it.
Lets go vegan: Selezione Naurale & Il Gelato Amico
After the museum Ekaterina and her Italian boyfriend took me to a nice vegan place called Selezione Naturale. The food was very good; everything was freshly made with high quality ingredients. The price was very affordable for this quality. After having a wonderful meal, we decided that there was still some room for dessert and we went to a vegan gelateria called Il Gelato Amico. In Il Gelato Amico, Turin has one of the most unique gelaterias in all of Italy. Along with being vegan, the rice based gelato from Il Gelato Amico is also gluten-free. And you do not taste the difference with normal ice cream; it really has a rich flavor!
Lets grab a movie: Museo Nationale del cinema
Now enough with the food blogging.
In Turin there happens to be also one of my favorite museums ever: Museo Nationale del cinema, the national museum of cinema. You can find the museum in the most beautiful and impressive building of Turin (inside and out), Mole Antonelliana, so it is easily combined with the nice panoramic view from the top (if it is not cloudy). You go there with a glass elevator!!
The exhibitions are very interesting and original. The last time I went there, there was also a temporary exhibition about the Cuban cinema. There is also a fun interactive part. I could really wander there around for hours. A must do for cinema lovers!
Lets relax in Parco Valentino
Turin has also a nice, clean and huge park. Parco Valentino. Everyone comes here to relax, so I did some yoga there with my Russian friend. The atmosphere is very peaceful. There apparently is also a castle and a botanical garden. It is also very nice to walk down the beautiful riverside of the Po, a must do!
Eco city tour
After some hours of walking I was tired so I decided to do the eco city tour! Starting in the Piazza Palacio I think this 45 minutes tour is an excellent way to discover the city. It is in a small electric bus with audio guide. It makes you see the most important squares and streets of Torino but also some places you might never go to on your own.
Ladies, Turin is also a great to do some shopping, and do not forget to buy some sweets in this city of chocolate!
Boys, I heard the Juventus stadium/museum and the car museum are also strongly recommended, but I saved them for my next trip to this charming city!
Ci vediamo Torino!