The name of Piemonte (Piedmont in English) is in fact a combination of three words piede di monti – the foot of the mountains – according to the large walls of Alps that protect the mist covered plains, a small provincial towns and hills with pastures and vineyards. The heart of this region is Torino (Turin), which surprises its visitors with beautiful baroque buildings, cobblestone streets, shady arcades and elegant cafes.
Isola dei Pescatori, Lago Maggiore, Piemonte, Italy by kkmarais
Piemonte and neighbouring Valle d’Aosta are unlike Turin and its cultural jewels of rural character. The south of the region is covered by hills with vineyards (around Barolo) and seemingly endless cereal and rice fields. In the north you can find world-class Alps ski resorts, which include Courmayeur but also a National Park called Parco Nazionale del Gran Paradiso.
Piemonte is a region which has in recent years become a popular tourist destination for lovers of good cuisine. This fertile region of northwestern Italy is not only a world-famous wine country, but also has one of the most important areas for rice cultivation in Europe. White truffles from Alba city are in demand as much as hazelnuts from Cortemilia, gorgonzola cheese from the city of Novara or fungi from the Val di Susa.
Courmayeur, Piemonte, Italy by Leo-setä
Midst of this landscape is full of historic castles and palaces alternating with great vineyards. At its lakes Lago Maggiore and Lago d’Orta you will be fascinated by almost Mediterranean atmosphere, while in the west, on the border with France, you will find wildlife mountain valleys which are ideal for hikers.
Lago Maggiore, Piemonte, Italy by Alessandro Vecchi
Lago Maggiore, Lago d’Orta and Lago di Viverone are now sought after tourist destination in Piemonte region and will surprise each visitor. Clear water, surrounded by beautiful parks, palm trees, lush gardens and mountain ridges… This is just a short characteristic of Lago Maggiore with its fashionable resorts of Stresa and Verbania and its interesting Borromeo Islands archipelago consisting of three islands. It is a paradise for water sports lovers so if you like swimming, sailing, surfing, water skiing and kayaking or speedboat sailing this part of the region is ideal for you. Lovers of trekking and climbing will find their paradise in the surrounding mountains and Valgrande (Parco Nazionale Val Grande), most extensive wild national park in Europe. Even golfers can indulge their passion on 8 different courses.
Parco Nazionale Val Grande, Piemonte, Italy by Fabio
Piemonte became the cradle of the school of painting, which is documented by small parish churches and exquisite collections of fine arts. The most impressive architectural gems in north-western Italy, can undoubtedly be found in Turin, neglected and elegant Baroque city that, among other things, boasts one of the best Egyptian museums in the world.
Piemonte also has a renowned industry – Fiat in Turin, Olivetti in Ivrea, Ferrero in Alba, but is also known for its agricultural roots, food and wines. Beautiful limestone hills of Monferrato attract lots of visitors, you can taste excellent wine Asti spumante and two red wines – Barolo and Barberesco. This area is also the cradle of vermouth and salt Breadsticks (grissini), without which the bars and Italian restaurants could not cope.
Parco Nazionale del Gran Paradiso, Piemonte, Italy by Tor des Geants
Top places to visit in Piemonte
- Alessandria – sweet city
- Asti – one of the largest architectural and cultural sights
- Gran Paradiso National Park – oldest national park in Italy
- Lago Maggiore – the second largest lake in Italy
- Lago d’Orta – a pleasant holiday in a mild climate of northern Italy
- Montiglio – a lovely hill town
- The Piedmont Alps (Val di Susa, Valli di Lanzo, Sestriere, Bardonecchia)
- Val Grande National Park