Attractions to explore and things to do in Turin - the Eurovision 2022 host city
The highly anticipated host city announcement of Turin for Eurovision 2022 has sent us all into a spin with some of us hurriedly booking accommodation and looking at potential flights.
For travel lovers, this is where all the fun starts. Planning is all part of the journey.
Turin (or as the Italians call it, Torino) is the capital city of Piedmont (which basically means “land at the feet of the mountains") in northern Italy, if you don't already know where that is, you could say it is at the top left of the boot in the north and at the foot of the alps - it is a beautiful city.
It was the first capital of a united Italy from 1861 to 1865 and is now Italy's fourth largest city with approximately 2.2 million people. It has its own international airport, and is also very accessible by rail from Rome and other cities within Europe. It is known for its refined architecture and cuisine and served as the host city for the 2006 Winter Olympic Games.
It is a big city with lots to do, so let's have a look at some of the great things you can do and attractions to explore while in Turin for the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest!
Food, glorious food!
After a busy day sightseeing, one must fuel before the show, and in Turin, you are spoilt for choice!
Along with the usual delicious Italian fare we all know so well, Turin is very famous for its chocolate (particularly the hazelnut variety) and is considered the home for Italian chocolate with many artisanal stores available.
Being close to France, the Piedmontese cuisine has some French influences, with lovely butter and cheese as well as truffles (not the chocolate type!). It is said Turin is home to the slow-food movement which focuses on quality ingredients and simple food done well. Turin also has several foodie festivals throughout the year, so you wont have to look very far for a quality gastronomic experience in Turin!
Once you are finished with dinner (or lunch, or even breakfast!) get stuck into one of Northern Italy's famous desserts such as zabaione, panna cotta, or everyone's favourite - gelato (try the pistachio!).
The home of traditional Italian espresso
Italy is a true coffee lovers' paradise and they take their coffee very seriously! One of the most popular brands of coffee in the world is from Turin - Lavazza. Lavazza brought about the traditional Italian espresso in 1895.
Turin is also home to the famous drink, the Bicerin, which is a layered coffee drink with espresso topped with a layer of hot chocolate and then a layer of cream - yum!
Italians tend to stick to a coffee etiquette about what you should order and when. For instance, if you try ordering a cappuccino in the afternoon, you may get a raised eyebrow as it is considered a breakfast brew. Espressos are usually the coffee of choice later in the day which is sure to keep you zinging into the night! If you are not a fan of coffee, try an Italian hot chocolate... they are very luxurious.
Museo Nazionale del Cinema (National Museum of Cinema)
Movie buffs will love this one. Housed in the Mole Antonelliana (that tall structure you see in all the cityscape photos of Turin) and located over five floors inside a grand old cinema, this museum offers fascinating insight into how movies are made. Part of the museum's collection includes movie making equipment and houses a large array of props, costumes and other memorabilia such as posters.
One of the key attractions at the museum is the glass elevator that takes you 75 metres into the air and pops out at the top to give you 360 degree views of the city.
Sassi-Superga tramway and Basilica of Superga
If you feel the need to get out of town for a bit and be at one with nature, head on up to Superga which is one of the city's highest points. Here you have a breath-taking view of the city of Turin. To get there, you will need to take an old tram for three kilometres up Superga, and at the top is the Basilica of Superga which is a beautiful church built in the 1700s.
The site also holds significance for soccer fans. In 1949, a plane carrying the legendary team 'Torino' crashed into the side of the Basilica while coming into land at Turin. Devastatingly, all onboard were killed. This was particularly sad for Italy as most of the Italian national team were from the Torino soccer team. There is a monument behind the basilica for the soccer team should you wish to pay your respects.
Fiat Factory and The Museo dell'Automobile
Until the early 1980s, Fiats (just like the cute little Fiat 500 on the left) were produced in Turin's Fiat Lingotto Factory. The huge factory site now houses a hotel, a shopping centre and entertainment complex, but the real attraction is what is on top of the complex... the old test track and yes, you can visit it!
If you still need more of a car fix, maybe you can try out the Museo dell'Automobile which houses a huge collection of nearly 200 cars including many Italian made cars including the one and only Ferrari.
Palazzo Reale di Torino (Royal Palace of Turin)
If you want to see how the other half once lived and are attracted to bling and shiny things, make sure you pay a visit to the Palazzo Reale di Torino. Adorned in gold and richly decorated furnishings, this UNESCO-listed museum was built in the 1600s and was once home to the royal family. This sprawling site also includes gardens to chill out in, an impressive art collection as well as a fascinating armoury museum.
To make the most of the palace, why not hire a local guide to give you the ins and outs of the palace.
Museo Egizio (Egyptian Museum)
Not sure you will ever make it to Egypt? Well if you are going to Turin, you wont need to. Listed as the number one Turin attraction on Trip Advisor, Museo Egizio houses the largest collection of Egyptian artefacts outside of Cairo.
Over 37,000 pieces are stored over three floors which include the obligatory mummies, sarcophagi, papyrus and other fascinating trinkets.
The museum also uses clever technology to tell a story and could easily keep you busy for hours. Make sure you plan ahead though, as during the 2006 Winter Olympics, the museum saw more visitors in a fortnight than a full year.
The Museo Egizio is one of the most visited museums in all of Italy - pretty impressive!
After a day of seeing the sights of Turin, eating multiple gelatos and having an obligatory nap before the big show, perhaps you may be interested in a little aperitif before dinner.
What is an aperitif you say? Well its pretty much a cocktail hour - Italian style! Drinks are usually dry rather than sweet and are supposed to stimulate your apetite. Turin is the capital of the aperitif, and is the birth place of several well known brands of Italian liquor including Martini Rosso, Gancia and Cinzano.
Some famous choices for aperitifs include Vermouth, Aperol Spritz, Campari and Negroni. Snacks are often served with the afternoon aperitif and may include olives or nuts. So why not find a nice little cafe to sit back and relax before the show with an aperitif!
Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino
Fans of the Olympic Games may like to go for a tour of Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino. It was constructed in the 1930's and was home to football teams Juventus and Torino up until 1990. It underwent a major reconstruction of the hosting of the Winter Olympic Games in 2006.
Juventus and Torino ended up returning to the stadium as a home ground. Juventus would end up moving after the 2010-2011 football season, with Torino still till this day using it as a home ground. Juventus now hold their home matches at the Juventus Stadium, aka Allianz Stadium which is also in Turin, which you can also books tours for.
Stadio Olimpico Grande Torino has hosted many musician and concerts in its time from the likes of Madonna, Michael Jackson, Tina Turner, The Rolling Stones and most recently One Direction. In 2013 it was the location of Italy's end-of-year rugby union international against Australia where Australia beat the Italians 50 to 20.
A tour of the stadium also includes access to the museum with a large collection of sports memorabilia.
Pala Alpitour - Eurovision Song Contest 2022
The number one most important thing to do in Turin is of course, the 2022 Eurovision Song Contest! While we don't have a lot of detail yet, what we do know is that the Contest will be held in the PalaOlimpico, also known as Pala Alpitour. It was opened in 2005 and was used for the 2006 Winter Olympics. It is no surprise Turin was chosen with their proven track record for holding large events.
It is the largest indoor sporting arena in Italy. During to Olympics it hosted the ice hockey events with a seated capacity of over 12,000. It now also holds large scale concerts. Artists that performed there include Madonna, Rihanna, U2, 5 Second of Summer and Eurovision 2015 artists Il Volo, just to name a few.
As soon as we hear more information about the Eurovision Village and other events that will be happening in and around Turin for the duration of the Contest, we will let you know! We are sure that the atmosphere in Turin will be absolutely electric!
Keep an eye out for further information about Eurovision Song Contest 2022 in Turin through our website and our socials by searching @aussievisionnet.