Places of interest
You will discover a still authentic region, away from mass tourism and confusion and in any season you will delight and charm!
San Secondo is a quiet village at the foot of the Cozie Alps. It is the birthplace of Gustavo Rol (a noted psychic of 1900), it is famous for its red terracotta soil which was used in 1800 to build ‘i tupin’ terracotta vases. Each year there is a fair dedicated to this on the third weekend of September. The medieval Castle of Miradolo is worth mentioning. Today it houses interesting exhibitions.
Pinerolo is a town known for its elegance and temperate climate so much so that Edmondo De Amicis described it as 'the Nice of Piedmont.' Pinerolo has an interesting medieval centre and it is historically linked to horses. It was home to the prestigious military riding school, attended by cavalry officers from around the world for a century. The national cavalry museum provides an interesting history of the Italian cavalry.
A town to be explored by walking through its streets and historical centre with beautiful squares and medieval roads, Pinerolo is part of the “Città di Charme” circuit which includes masterpieces rich in traditions and precious artistic treasures.
It has been an Olympic venue during the Torino 2006 Olympic Winter Games and it is a lively town, animated by a nice market (on Wednesday and Saturday) and numerous shows, concerts, theater spectacles and cultural events at any time of the year. The town will capture you with its local gastronomic specialties: Panettone Galup, Torta Zurich, cheeses and Pinerolese wines.: Panettone Galup, Torta Zurich and Pinerolese wines.
You could combine a visit to the area with the discovery of some of the traditions and local culture:
National and International riding competitions.
Start of September: exhibition of Pinerolese craftsmanship - a week of exhibitions of high level craftsmanship, accompanied by moments of music, dance and shows.
First weekend of October: “The Iron Mask” _ historical recreation which commemorates the mysterious characters of the “iron mask”, the man who spent 16 years in Prison in Pinerolo during the era of Louis XIV.
In addition, the Pinerolo area offers year-round events, fairs and festivals that celebrate local products, from meat, wine, apples and blueberries to grasses and mushrooms.
San Secondo is also a top point of departure for visiting Torino.
The first Italian capital of Piedmont, known as a grey city due to the great industrial development in the 60’s connected to the Fiat. Today it is a lively cultural city capable of unrepentantly surprising visitors by its beauty, the Museums (among which is the celebrated Egyptian Museum and the Cinema Museum), the historic palaces and the Royal Residences, the parks (the famous Parco del Valentino) contemporary art, gastronomy, events and shopping.
A visit to this city will require at least a couple of days. There is a possibility of discovering it cycling, thanks to the numerous cyclist paths, avenues and parks.
The following is highly recommended for children:
- National Cinema Museum
- National Automobile Museum
- Egyptian Museum
- Royal Armoury
- Museum of Natural Science
- Museum of Contemporary Art of Rivoli
- Valentino Park, Borgo and Rocca Medieval (along the river Po, one could hire a bicycle and rick Shaw).
… Many workshops for children are organized by Museum.
Discover the amazing beauties of Torino and Piedmont in a cheap and convenient way with the Torino + Piedmont Card
CITY SIGHTSEEING TORINO
Discover the elegance and the vitality of the city with the world’s leading open top bus tour operator. Thanks to its two lines “Torino Centre” and “Unexpected Torino”, the red panoramic bus will take you to the National Cinema Museum inside the big Mole Antonelliana tower, the Egyptian Museum, the Royal Residences, the National Automobile Museum , the “Officine Grandi Riparazioni” and to the Lingotto district where you find Eataly. Eataly is a wine and food shopping centre that has high quality Italian products.
For more information:
The surrounding area
From San Secondo one could also enjoy discovering the south west of Turin.
Culture and Nature:
- The Royal Residences www.residenzereali.it, the Reggia di Venaria Reale (known as the Versailles of Piedmont), the Palazzina di Caccia di Stupinigi: / Hunting Palace of Stupinigi (that has just been restored and it’s twenty minutes from here), the Rivoli Castle, with the Museum of National Contemporary Art and its small nice town, just to mention a few.
- The Monastery of San Michele (Sacra di San Michele): impressive symbol of the region of Piedmont in Susa valley .It is half an hour’s drive from the house.
- the Fortress of Fenestrelle: an extraordinary building which is about 635 m wide, 3 km long and occupies 1,300.000 square meters. It has 3 fortresses, 7 observation towers, 28 stair cases consisting 4000 steps and a Royal Stair case of 2500 steps. It took 122 years to build. It has 14 connecting bridges, 5 internal drawbridges and 183 light beacons.
- the characteristic “Rocca of Cavour” that unexpectedly stands out from the plain in front of the house.
- Saluzzo which is a beautiful city of art and history, The Castle of Manta and the Abbey of Staffarda, half an hour from the house in the direction of Cuneese;
- Cuneo and the mountains, and its’ 8 km of arcades full of chic shops and old cafés.
- Langhe, Roero, the city of Alba, which is the most famous Piemontese wine region.
- Pellice Valley: mountain excursions lovers and those passionate about history, will find many attractions here. The valley is home to the most populated Italian protestant community, the Valdese. Their history is wisely documented in the Museum of Torre Pellice including uncontaminated fortresses, refuges, churches and monuments;
- Chisone Valley and the Parco Naturale della Val Troncea: found in the marvelous «flower valley » that opens up above Pragelato in Val Chisone. The Park is an authentic alpine paradise;
- Germanasca Valley, which consists a small ski district of Prali;
- the Park of Orsiera Rocciavrè (with the Colle delle Finestre and the Assietta): one of the largest protected mountain areas in Piedmont. It has a variety of slopes. The Park resembles a sort of «island of mountains», which offer numerous and beautiful walks and bicycle rides;
- Sestriere with a spectacular ski area, fun walks on both snow and other seasons;
- Monviso, the river Po Valleys, the Valle Varaita …until the Colle dell’Agnello, this is a very popular road for cyclist.
Children recommended excursions:
- Scopriminiera, the biggest talcum mine in Europe: there’s an interesting guided tour inside the talcum mine suitable for children and adults, one travels in real carriages of the age www.scopriminiera.it;
- Usseaux, a little jewel which you find on the road leading to Sestriere, it is believed to be one of the most beautiful villages in Italy for its characteristic painted murals on the houses and Balboutet with its sundials;
- Zoom Torino a new concept bio-park where you can see the penguins bay, Maharajah tiger, Petra raptors, Asian archipelago and the old farm , swim alongside the penguins at Bolder Beach www.zoomtorino.it;
- Infini.to Planetarium of Turin, Astronomical and Space Museum www.planetarioditorino.it.
Food and Wine:
- Museo del Gusto (Taste Museum) of Frossasco: A unique reality in Italy that offers a virtual journey that traces nutrition facts from the prehistoric era up to modern day, itineraries for various food discovery , sensorial and multimedia stations dedicated to the 5 senses;
- restaurants, taverns, shops, wineries and farmhouses typical products in Pinerolo and the surrounding area;
- Pinerolo area offers year-round events, fairs and festivals that celebrate local products, from meat, wine, apples and blueberries to herbs and mushrooms. For an updated calendar: www.pinerolovalli-artecultura.it.