Piedmont in the winter
Piedmont in the winter
Piedmont is a region located in the northwest of Italy that is famous for its valleys, vineyards, mountains, and slopes. Some people believe that Italy is only a summer destination, but the truth is there are also plenty things to do and attractions see during the winter season. Visiting Piedmont in the winter has many advantages: It’s easier to find accommodation and prices are usually budget-friendly, you will avoid large crowds of tourists, and there are many winter festivals in the region worth visiting. Keep in mind that spring arrives early in Italy, and by winter I mean November to late March. One of the best
Credit: Fulvio Spada
How to get to Piedmont
The good news is that there are many flights from all over the world to Turin-Caselle International Airport. It is located just under 2 hours from Barbaresco and Barolo. Of course, you can also come to Piedmont from airports in Milan and Genoa. It will take you not more than 3 hours to reach the region by car.
Ski Resorts in Piedmont
Skiing is one of the main activities in Piedmont during the winter season and there are many ski resorts in the region. These ski resorts became quite popular back in 2006 when the city of Turin organized the Winter Olympic Games. Let’s take a look at some of the best ski centers in the region.
Credit: Fulvio Spada
Limone Piemonte is open from December to late April, and it’s perfect for intermediate skiers due to its 23 red ski slopes. There are four airports nearby, so it quite easy to reach this amazing ski resort that hosted its first big competition back in 1907. Today, Limone Piemonte organizes many international contests and is definitely a resort you should include on your list of places to visit in Piedmont in the winter.
The largest ski center in Cuneo, Mondole Ski spreads across 130 km of slopes and is open from December to April. It offers night skiing, as well as a large playground for children. One of the most popular sites at Mondole Ski is definitely Prato Nevoso, where you will find a lot of nursery slopes and blue or red runs.
La Val di Susa
Often referred to as “the Milky Way”, La Val di Susa is a network of ski slopes that offers hundreds of kilometers of various runs. If you follow the map, you will see that these slopes connect several small towns and villages including San Sicario, Sestriere, Cesana, Claviere, and many others. There are 15 ski schools, 120 ski lifts, and over 500 ski instructors at La Val di Susa. Cross-country skiers and snowboarders just love this ski center.
Alagna Valsesia – Monterosa Ski
Perfect for couples because of its pristine slopes, old mills, and picturesque nearby villages, Alagna Valsesia – Monterosa Ski features many intermediate slopes, as well as a number beginners and professional runs including blue or black slopes. This fabulous ski center is open from early December to April and is a great place to explore Piedmont in the winter.
Domobianca ski center provides its guests with 21 km of slopes, mostly for intermediate and beginners skiers. It is easily reachable from 6 airports and you will need approximately 2 to hours by car to reach it. Working from December to April, Domobianca attracts a lot of snowboarders. If you are in the mood for a movie or want to grab a drink in a nightclub, you can go to the nearest town that is located 10 km away.
Truffle Festivals in Piedmont
The Piedmont region is famous for two things, wine, and food. The region’s white truffle is one of the most expensive mushrooms in the world; therefore, it’s no wonder that there are so many truffle festivals in Piedmont. The most popular festival is called White Alba Truffle Fair that is held every October and lasts over 30 days. Alba is one of those places that is famous for its wine and truffles and they also have a festival called White Vezza del Alba Truffle & Roero Wines. It starts in late November and attracts a lot of visitors, both locals, and tourists. Some of the other truffle festivals in Piedmont include Regional Truffle Fair at Mondov, Fiera regionale del Tartufo, and San Sebastiano Curone Truffle Festival.
History and Culture in Piedmont
Besides wine, truffles, and ski resorts, the region of Piedmont offers a lot of sightseeing options that are connected to history and culture. If you are in Turin, make sure to visit the Egyptian Museum. It is one of largest Egyptian museums in the world. The National Cinema Museum and the Automobile Museum Turin are also some of the places worth visiting while in Turin. No visit to the region is complete without going to the beautiful Reggia di Venaria Palace, listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Go to the historical town of Cherasco or head out to the town of star-shaped walls called Savigliano. Alba and Ivrea house a number of monuments, while Staffarda features some of the most famous abbeys.
Credit: Eric Borda
Food & Wine in Piedmont
Although several restaurants in the region are closed during the winter season, you will find many others that serve delicious dishes. . Did you hear of Bagna Cauda or fondue dips? Well, both are the most typical specialties of the cuisine in Piedmont and are exclusively served with raw vegetables and truffle. Make sure to try some of the most famous dishes: the braised beef in Barolo wine and a wide spread of cheeses, such as: serium from Biella, robiola, gorgonzola from Novara. If you have some space left for dessert, try the Chocolate of Turin, nougat from Alba, Novara’s biscuits.
You probably already know that Piedmont is a true paradise for those who are into wines, especially red wines. Some of the best red wines in all of Italy are produced here including Grignolino, Gattinara, Barolo and many others. An interesting fact is that international branded products such as vermouth and bread sticks originally come from Turin.
What do you think about our recommendations for visiting Piedmont in the winter?
Featured Image Credit: Fulvio Spada