Turin, Italy (Torino)

Torino Italy

Population: 911,823 (2013)

Language(s): Italian

Demonym: Torinese

Area: 130 km2 (50 mi2)

Dialing Code: +39

Electricity Adapter: 230 V, 50 Hz, Plug Types C, F, & L

Time Zone: Central European Time UTC+1 (Summer CEST UTC+2)

City facts put together in collaboration with sister site 6pt5. Language guides and more can be found on Shishek.

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Turin (Torino in Italian) is the fourth-largest city in Italy, with nearly one million inhabitants. It is located in the northeast of the country, capital of the Piedmont region that it’s in, about 20 miles from the Italian border with France, and about 45 miles away from the Swiss border.

Torino is one of the main business and manufacturing hubs in Italy, with many industries and factories headquartered there. Torino is often referred to as the “Detroit of Italy,” because it is the home of several Italian car makers, such as FIAT, Abarth, Lancia, Bertone, and Alfa Romeo. Several capsules for the International Space Station were produced here, as well.

Turin is a city rich with beautiful architecture and history, and is just recently starting to come into its own as a tourist hot spot. Most of us know it as the home of the Shroud of Turin, but there is much more to see than that. It is home to the Egyptian Museum, the largest collection completely dedicated to Egyptian artifacts in the world outside of Cairo. The Museum of the Automobile (Museo dell’Automobile) is also here, because of its history with automobile manufacturing. The Mole Antonelliana was a former synagogue, but now houses the National Cinema Museum (Museo Nazionale del Cinema), and is the tallest museum in the world.

Some worthwhile landmarks and public spaces to check out include the Piazza San Carlo, the Royal Palace (Palazzo Reale), Castle Square (Piazza Castello, the heart of the city), and Piazza Vittorio Veneto. Turin was home to the 2006 Winter Olympics, and the city has kept up the revitalization momentum since then. Much of the walkable areas in the city are canopied under porticoes, the arcaded sidewalks, which the city boasts to have over 11 miles of.

The Piedmont region, of which Turin is the capital, has some of the best food in Italy, and we all know that Italian food is no joke. From the local beverage bicerin (a hot drink made with espresso, melted dark chocolate, and whipped cream) to the aperitivo culture (aperitivo is a dinnertime tradition in northern Italy where tapas and dinner items are set out as a buffet with the purchase of a drink at some bars), Torino is no new name to food culture. Torino is also the birthplace of vermouth, as well as the starting place of the slow food movement. On top of all this, it has a lavish cafe culture, and don’t overlook the local gelato! Even Eataly, the popular Italian gastronomical complex which has an outpost in New York which I frequent, started in Turin.

Whatever you’re looking for, Turin is sure to have it, or at least its own version. Small boutique shopping, architectural tours, great coffee, you name it, this city is sure not to disappoint.