Piedmont is a paradise for gourmets. Land of prestigious wines, delicious chocolate and fine cuisine, hills covered by vineyards; far away, the magnificent amphitheater formed by the Alps. Piedmont is elegance and style and Turin, the capital, is a perfect example. First Italian capital 150 years ago, Turin still has a French influence, as to be nicknamed the “Little Paris”. You will be fascinated by this everchanging city, elegant, lively, full of color and greenery – it is one of the Italian cities with the largest number of parks, watered by four rivers — oriented to the future but also proud of its past reflected in its buildings, its squares and its museums. Turin is a city to discover slowly ride after ride, thinking that every stone hides a story.
Individual arrival, accommodation in hotel and meeting with the tour leader. Short walk in one of the pedestrian streets of the Old Town. Dinner at the Oca Fola, typical restaurant with a Piedmontese cuisine based on ingredients linked to the territory according to the original recipes from Langhe and Monferrato.
We will cycle for most of the day exploring squares and markets, going into alleys and under arcades. We will get to Piazza San Carlo, the most beautiful square, called “the city’s living room” for the harmony of its spaces. Continuing, we will enter in the large Piazza Castello, since ever heart of the city, with Palazzo Madama in the center and the Royal Palace, the Cathedral, the Guarini Chapel, where the Holy Shroud is guarded, all around. We will continue our exploration to discover the castrum, the oldest part of the city, dating back to the Roman camp that Julius Caesar founded upon returning from Gaul, with the Porta Palatina (1st century AD), the only city gate still preserved. We will then arrive in the great Piazza della Repubblica, where the colorful and multiethnic Porta Palazzo market is held on a daily basis. For lunch we will move to the close District of Quadrilatero, a tangle of narrow streets perpendicular to each other in a typical medieval style, with countless restaurants and bars, to enjoy some Piedmontese specialities. On the path along the Dora and the Po river we will reach the panoramic viewpoint of Monte dei Cappuccini where, on a clear day, you can look at the whole city surrounded by the Western Alps and, with the Mole Antonelliana in the foreground. Returning to the center through Via Po, with its characteristic arcades, we will stop in a historical café to enjoy a sweet snack made with the famous chocolate “gianduja”. Return to the hotel in the late afternoon, to relax and get prepared for a dinner to be held at a Michelinstarred restaurant, where good food can perhaps be accompanied with a tasting of prestigious wines like Barolo and Barbaresco. After dinner, a relaxing stroll to admire the lights of a notoriously young and dynamic city.
Today, cycling along the city bike paths, we will discover how the Savoy dynasty wanted to place near the Turin command center made up of ancient palaces, magnificent villas designed by leading architects of the time, such as venues of pleasure and entertainment located along the rivers, on the hills or in the surrounding countryside. Going up the beautiful path along the Dora river we will reach, through nodes and moderate traffic roads, the noble Borgo di Venaria and then the homonymous Royal Palace, the largest between the Savoy residences, built in a place once scene of Ducal hunting. Its construction was entrusted to the best architects of the time. Royal gardens, split on terraces, architectonic spaces and fountains complete the Slow Active Tours page 1/4 ! majesty of the Palace. Before the visit, we shall stop at the Barbero bakery, which was recognized by the Piedmont Region as Excellent Artisan shop, where we will have the honor to taste his creations: the venariesi chocolates filled with rum and the famous and unique canestrelli of Altessano. These cookies recipes respect the ancient traditions, both in the choices of raw materials and in the art of cooking with ferri, traditional tools once used by all the housewives to prepare what was the one and only holiday’s sweet. After crossing the Mandria Park, a protected area surrounded by 30 km of city walls to protect wildlife and the most significant example of plain forest, we will reach the beautiful location chosen for lunch: a farm in the countryside just outside the walls with stunning views of the Royal Palace, whose simple but genuine cuisine will make us appreciate the quality and taste of the raw materials. Return to Turin in the late afternoon: aperitif in one of the central wine bars with an Asti Spumante Vintage (champagne method) and dinner at one of the Imbarchini along the Po River, boating clubs turned into elegant restaurants and nightspots.
Riding our bikes, we will follow the path of the Po River, far from car traffic and immersed in the parks, a path that will allow us to get out of the city centre enjoying in total relax beautiful glimpses on the river: we will frequently see herons, ducks and migratory birds. Before leaving the track, we will make a short stop for a quick brunch with specialini, delicious puff pastry baskets stuffed with varied ingredients like salmon, caviar, asparagus or prawns, accompanied by a glass of Freisa, Piedmont slightly fruity wine perfect for the occasion. Now an interesting experience is awaiting us: we will rise to the Hill of Superga, the highest point of the city, with the historical tranvia, ancient train that climbs up the slope and leave us just a few meters from the summit. On the hill in front of the Basilica di Superga, we will ride our bikes, and after enjoying the fantastic view of the city from up there, we will begin to take the “scenic route of the hills”, slightly undulating, surrounded by a thick pine forest rich in panoramic sights, on the hills of Asti and Cuneo, over the Po Valley and the Western Alps. Once in Pino Torinese we will be welcomed by an excellent tavern, where to taste all the starters of the Piedmontese tradition. A thrilling descent will take us back downtown to our hotel, so we will close the day with a homemade ice cream at the famous “da Florio”: recommended cream and gianduja flavors, apparently the best in Turin. For dinner we will have tastings of craft beers in the brewery Baladin, in a few years these local craft beers born in a small village of Langhe in the 1990s have become a world famous brand.
Greetings, kisses and… sweet hugs!! Before leaving, another little taste of some Piedmontese sweets, in one of the typical pastry shops: you “just” have to choose between a slice of hazelnut cake, a pasta di meliga (corn biscuits), baci di Dama, butter torcetti and a huge variety of chocolates.
Price per person based on two sharing
Daily High Season from 01.07 to 31.08.2016; from 20.12 to 10.01; Easter Holy week.
5 days / 4 nights
This tour is available to anyone with a minimum of habit to cycle. Daily mileage is about 40 kilometers a day, with scheduled stops for visits and refreshments. The route is focused on typical food and wine of the Lecce area. The bike will be a way to dispose of the good food and enjoy the many landscapes that this land offers. There will also be cultural moments and the opportunity, if possible, for a good swim in the clear Salento sea.
En suite rooms in charming central B&B. 4 breakfasts, 4 lunches, 4 dinners and mentioned tastings included. Drinks are not included during dinners and lunches.
One of our expert tour leader will be with you for the whole trip. Sharing with you the love of travel and nature and a great knowledge of the territory, you will live an authentic holiday full of fun and relax. Slow Active Tours page 3/4
40 years old, Cristina got a Degree in Viticulture and Enology and in Professional Education: she works with these qualifications at the Professional Schools San Carlo in Turin. Since she was 8, she has practiced sports at a competitive level in various disciplines such as football and basketball, in adulthood Cristina dedicates herself completely to cycle on and off road. In 2010 she gets the bicycle tour guide qualification to accompany foreign hikers throughout Italy, combining her passion for cycling to the culinary knowledge of the territory. As Piedmontese, she loves to guide people in the places where she was born and raised, managing to convey fully the culture and traditions of this beautiful and unfortunately little known tourist region.
We organize your holidays in Italy: tours by bike, trekking, snorkeling, cultural trips preferring public transportations instead of private ones. We propose holidays “with a slow pace”, because we need to taste every instant of a good trip, to recapture calm and peace, to smile and think, to admire what nature offers, to chat together with locals, to have a direct approach to local cultures and to travel responsibly and sustainably.