I believe you are here because you want to know what are the best things to do in Turin. Good news! You are in the right place. And I want to take you beyond, so you are fully prepared for your trip and know all the essentials to put together your itinerary for Turin.
Turin is the capital city of Piedmont in northern Italy, known for its refined architecture and cuisine. However, this is a very industrial area of Italy. Italians say that Piedmont is a perfect place for work, but what about tourism? Is Turin worth visiting?
With its historical palaces and shops, Turin is one of the most artistic Italian cities.
Turin offers glamours, vintage cafes, a great food scene, one of the most famous parks in Italy, a lot of museums, and exquisite palaces. So if you ask me, yes, Turin is worth visiting. Especially if you enjoy city breaks away from tourist hotspots.
In this article, I will share the best things to do in Turin and a lot of useful information to make your planning even easier. At the end of the article, you can find a one day itinerary for Turin that includes most of the things from this list. I can guarantee that after reading this article, you will be ready for your trip to Turin.
*Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase after clicking one of these links, I earn a small commission at no extra cost to you.
15 best things to do in Turin
Now, that you know all the practical information about Turin, it’s time to talk about the best things to do in Turin. I have included a few fun activities, food experiences, main attractions, museums and the most beautiful palaces in entire Italy.
I am sure that every single one of you will find something interesting and exciting in this of the best things to do in Turin. Let’s get to it!
Try Bicerin at Caffè Platti
Turin is the city of chocolate, so, a lot of the specialties of the Piedmont capitals are sweets. One of my favorites is Bicerin, and there is no better place for you to try than Caffè Platti.
Caffè Platti was opened in 1870 and since then, it has been one of the most beloved places by the people of Turin. The place has served people like Luigi Einaudi, the first president of the Republic, Senator Giovanni Agnelli, and Cesare Pavese.
The aristocratic interiors will catch your attention. Here you will find crystal chandeliers, large mirrors refined in gold, a majestic wood bar, and the stucco ceilings decorated with gold are just the beginning of a wonderful experience. I’m sure you are tempted to visit already!
Bicerin is not the only specialty that this fancy place offers. Try one of their croissants or taste their delicious pastries and make your experience even sweeter.
RELATED: 5 Authentic Experiences in Piedmont
Visit one of the famous museums: the Egyptian museum, car museum, cinema museum, or Lavazza museum
Turin is a city of museums. Are you passionate about old civilization and archeology? Or maybe you are more into modern history? When you visit Turin, you will find all the museums you need. Here are the 4 best museums in Turin.
The Egyptian Museum is the real institution of the city. It houses one of the largest collections of Egyptian antiquities, with more than 30,000 artifacts.
It is considered the second most important Egyptology collection in the world, after the Egyptian Museum of Cairo. If you are a history lover, you simply must include this in your Turin guide.
The Car Museum (MAUTO) has a collection of almost 200 cars and it’s one of those things to see in Turin to get in touch with the culture of Italy.
If you didn’t know this already, Turin is the birthplace of Fiat and Lancia. That’s why it is considered the Italian capital of car production. Here you will learn the history of the iconic Fiat 500 and other classics like Alfa Romeo and Ferrari.
The symbol of Turin, which you can see on the Italian 2 cents coins – Mole Antonelliana – hosts the Museum of Cinema. It houses pre-cinematographic optical devices such as magic lanterns, earlier and current film technologies, stage items from early Italian movies, and other memorabilia.
You can also ride a panoramic lift, with transparent glass walls, where you can have a breathtaking 360 panorama of Turin.
Museo Lavazza is another way to discover the soul of Turin and the entire Italy. It is one of the most recent museums in the city and if you ask me one of those cool things to do in Turin. Here you can learn about the coffee culture and how the Italian coffee industry developed through the years.
Take a photo of The Cattedrale di San Giovanni Battista
The Duomo of Turin is the main church of the city. The church is built next to a bell tower and it is one of the best photo spots in Turin.
When you visit the Duomo, don’t miss the Chapel of the Holy Shroud. The Shroud of Turin is a religious relic believed by many to be the burial shroud of Jesus of Nazareth.
In addition to the Shroud, you will also find the tomb of Blessed Pier Giorgio Frassati (1901-1925). Turin native, a fun-loving, avid athlete, devout Catholic, and benefactor of the poor, called the “Saint for the youth of the Third Millennium.” Several royal consorts and princesses are buried here.
Find Porta Palatina
Porta Palatina is a Roman Age city gate. The Palatine Gate represents the primary archaeological evidence of the city’s Roman phase and it is approximately 30 meters tall.
There you can walk in an archeological garden and discover one of the best-preserved gates of the Roman Age gates in all of Italy. In the park, you can also find the ruins of the Roman theatre of the city.
Adding Porta Palatina to your Turin itinerary will make you discover an alternative side of the Piedmont capital. And it’s another great photo spot in Turin.
Go shopping in the area of Piazza San Carlo
Piazza San Carlo is one of Turin’s main squares and it’s a wonderful example of Baroque style. In this big square, you can find two “twin” churches – the church of San Carlo Borromeo and the church of Santa Cristina, the statue of Emanuele Filiberto, and fancy palaces and porticoes.
Under the porticoes, you will find some of the best shops in Turin. Loads of luxury brands together with local ateliers and boutiques. We all know how much Italians love fashion, so this is something that you shouldn’t miss.
The square is also hosting big social events for the city, making it the heart and soul of Turin. Between a boutique and another one find the Porta del Diavolo, a wooden door rich in details. It is one of the most popular photo spots in Turin.
Explore the gastronomy of Piedmont in Turin
Everyone knows that Italy is a country of food. Every region has its delicacies and famous dishes and Piedmont is not an exception.
The most famous Turin dish is definitely the Bagna Cauda which literally means “hot sauce”. It’s prepared with garlic, anchovies, and olive oil and it is used as a dip for vegetables.
Vitello Tonnato is a dish of cold, sliced veal covered with a creamy, mayonnaise sauce that has been flavored with tuna. It is served chilled or at room temperature.
While Bagna Cauda is naturally an autumn-winter dish, Vitello Tonnato is perfect for summer. At the same time, it is a classic dish for Christmas.
Agnolotti al Plin are the Piedmontese version of Ravioli. They can be stuffed with vegetables or meat. It is typically eaten with the sauce of roasted meat, but you can also taste them with butter and sage.
Bonet in the Piedmontese dialect means hat. It is the most famous dessert in Piedmontese cuisine. It consists of a chocolate pudding with a delicate rum flavor, and it’s covered in caramel and amaretti.
Another institution in Turin and Piedmont is the wine culture. I already talked about the best wine experience in Piedmont in another article, so click here if you want to know more. But keep in mind, a meal in Turin can’t be complete without a glass of Barbera, Barolo, Roero, or Barbaresco.
See the most important palaces – Palazzo Reale di Torino, Palazzo Madama, Palazzo Carignano
Your Turin itinerary can be really complete only when you visit at least one of its palaces. These are hands down the most beautiful palaces in Turin, so make sure you discover at least one of these gems.
Palazzo Reale di Torino is located in the heart of Turin in Piazza Castello. It was designed by the Baroque architect Filippo Juvarra. Inside, the palace will surprise you with its aristocratic design, a huge private collection of paintings, and the Armeria Reale – a collection of weapons. It will take you 2 hours to visit this palace.
Palazzo Madama is another of those places to see in Turin. Just like the facade of the Royal Palace, Filippo Juvarra is once again the architect who designed the Palazzo Madama. It was the first Senate of the Kingdom of Italy and takes its traditional name from the embellishments it received under two queens of the House of Savoy. Nowadays it is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Palazzo Carignano is a historical building in the center of Turin, which houses the only Museum of the Risorgimento in Italy. It was a private residence of the Princes of Carignano. Just like Palazzo Madama, it is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site. The curvy, baroque facade is the most distinctive part of the palace.
Inside the Museum of Risorgimento, you can learn about the history of the unification of Italy.
Try the best local chocolate at Baratti & Milano and visit Galleria Subalpina
If someone asked me: what is your favorite cafe in Italy? My answer will be undoubtedly the Baratti Milano. This historical cafe was established in 1858 and t is the birthplace of the chocolate candy Cremino.
Once you step inside, you will be surrounded by a regal atmosphere. You will admire Cristal chandeliers, golden silk curtains, precious marble and woods, and stuccoed ceilings. The bar is decorated with great taste and style, making this cafe an absolute must for your Turin itinerary. But wait until you discover the best part – the food and drinks!
In autumn and winter try their hot chocolate. Locals claim that it is the best hot chocolate in Turin. It will wrap your mouth in a triumph of sweetness and taste warming up your body and spirit. If it’s too hot for chocolate, try one of their aperitifs, served in style with some little snacks. You can also purchase their chocolate for a takeaway and that’s something that you don’t want to miss.
When you leave the cafe, don’t forget to take a picture of one of the most instagrammable places in Turin – the Galleria Subalpina.
Discover a hidden gem – Cinema Lux
Galleria Subalpina is not the only picturesque gallery you will find in Turin. Galleria San Federico is another galley that deserves your attention. Inside the gallery, you will find the historical Cinema Lux, cute bars, and other fancy shops. The famous movie Deep Red had a scene filmed in this spot.
I would recommend you add this to your list of the things to see in Turin. For locals, this is not a hidden gem, but I noticed that other Turin guides don’t mention anything about this beautiful place in Turin. See it for your yourself!
Visit Mercato di Porta Palazzo
The Mercato di Porta Palazzo hosts the biggest open-air market in Europe and here you can discover Turin in a different way. Try their local products and eat your way through Turin.
You can find some local restaurants inside the market and this is going to be one of your best food experiences in Turin. If you ask me, the cuisine of Piedmont is so underrated. So in the next chapter, I was to talk about it more.
Don’t miss the old, but beautiful facade that was renovated to celebrate the 100 years of the unification of Italy!
Get lost at La Venaria Reale
My personal highlight of my Turin itinerary was visiting the Royal Palace of Venaria Reale. So if you ask me, this is one of the best things to do in Turin.
Technically, Venaria Reale is located 20 kilometers away from Turin, but it is extremely well connected to the center of Turin and you easily add it to your Turin itinerary. To be precise, this is one of the best things to do around Turin.
You will need to find the bus service called Venaria Express which leaves from Piazza Vittorio Veneto and Piazza Castello. Venaria Express runs every hour and will take you to the Royal palace in less than one hour. There are other local buses, but you will need to use Google Maps to find the most convenient option. You can use a taxi or FreeNow. 30 minutes ride will cost you around 20 euros.
The Royal palace is a real must see in Turin and once you step in, you will understand why. The decorations of the palace are absolutely remarkable, and the view of Galleria Grande is one of the most beautiful rooms in Italy. After taking the perfect photos of the Galleria Grande, head to the gardens. If you feel tired, you can also ride the little train and save your legs.
How did I get it so empty? The trick is to come here before closing time. The last entrance is 1 hour before closing time and you will need approximately 1-2 hours to see it all. The entrance fee is between 16 to 20 euros and this includes gardens as well.
Relax at the QC Termetorino – thermal waters of Turin
Looking for a gateway from the heat and the crowds? You can find your escape in the heart of Turin and it is called QC Termetorino. A true oasis of beauty in the city center: a historic building from the late nineteenth century and a picturesque Renaissance park.
Choose some special treatments of massages, or a wealth path. Perfect for solo travelers or couples. QC Termetorino really knows how to spoil their customer. I mean, you can even spoil yourself with a wellness lunch or aperitivo while wearing your robe!
Stroll the Parco del Valentino
Parco del Valentino is one of the biggest public parks in Turin. It is located along the west bank of the Po river. This park has been nominated “The best Italian park” after a selection among the fifteen best Italian parks.
Here you can find the famous street lamps sitting on the bench together and the medieval village. It is probably the most photographed place in Turin. And strolling Valentino park is one of the fun things to do in Turin to escape the crowd. It gets even more beautiful in the fall as the part turns into a colorful paradise.
RELATED: Reasons to Spend One Day in Mantua
Catch the sunset at Monte dei Capuccini and capture the beauty of Mole Antonelliana
Your perfect Turin guide must include the best sunset spot to end your day in Turin. Just a short ride away from the center you will find the Monte dei Cappuccini.
If you want to walk, you will have to cross Po, which is the longest river in Italy, and climb up until Monte Dei Cappuccini. Your final destination on Google Maps should be Chiesa di Santa Maria del Monte dei Cappuccini.
Another great photo spot in Turin, so bring your camera and don’t forget a zoom lens. You can take a perfect photo of the Mole Antonelliana with the alps in the background. Sunset just makes it even better. And the best part – it didn’t seem like a busy spot. Especially if you compare it to other famous viewpoints around Italy.
What to do in Turin for a day?
As I mentioned earlier, you can fit the main attraction of Turin in one day. Here is my one day Turin itinerary, so you can make the most of 24 hours in Turin. Once again, you won’t be able to do it all, but this is the best way to discover Turin in one day.
Morning of your Turin itinerary
Your day starts with a breakfast in Platti Caffè, walking to Porta del Diavolo, and finding yourself in Piazza San Carlo. Check the porticoes and boutiques and choose if you prefer to visit Palazzo Madama, Royal Palace, or the Egyptian Museum. You can have lunch in Porta Palazzo which is located nearby.
Afternoon of your Turin itinerary
After lunch, take a taxi or a bus to go to Venaria Reale, in order to visit this Royal residence you will need at least two hours. Once you are done with the Palace, go back for an aperitivo in Baratti Milano inside the Galleria Subalpina. After, visit Cinema Lux and get ready for dinner.
Evening of your Turin itinerary
Walk to piazza palazzo di Città and see the Duomo nearby. A few meters away from you, you will find the restaurant L’Osto del Borgh Vej to try some Piedmontese specialties.
Useful tips to know before visiting Turin
How to arrive in Turin?
Caselle is the only airport in Turin. It has several train stations and a bus terminal. If you are based in Europe many low-cost airlines and bus companies will take you to Caselle airport. If you arrive from other continents you could possibly land at Malpensa Airport, which is approximately 2 hours away from the city.
Arriving in Turin by air. Caselle airport is located approximately 20 kilometers away from Turin’s center. From there you can easily reach the center by bus, train or taxi. The bus ticket is 7.50 euros and the bus comes every 15 or 30 minutes. The train from the airport is currently unavailable from the airport due to work. Taxi is the most comfortable option and you will arrive in the center of Turin in less than 40 minutes. You can use an application called FreeNow.
Arriving in Turin by train. Turin’s main train Station is Torino Porta Nuova. It is located in a strategic and central position in the city, and it’s the third biggest train station in Italy after Rome and Milan. Make sure you stop and appreciate the beauty of the station, especially in the Gonin Room. If you ask me, it is one of those beautiful places that you should see in Turin.
Arriving in Turin by bus. International companies like Flixbus stop here. The Bus Terminal is in Corso Vittorio Emanuele, and it’s very well connected with the rest of the city. You can take a bus or a train.
How many days in Turin?
In order to visit Turin and its treasures properly, you need at least a couple of days in Turin. If you are planning to spend only one day in Turin, you will have to give up most of the museums and palaces. But you could still discover the main attractions of Turin if you are willing to walk around a lot.
Where to stay in Turin?
Turin is the 4th largest city in Italy, so I advise a central position. The area of Piazza San Carlo is ideal and it will give you the possibility to walk to all the major attractions. Also, you have access to public transport that can take you anywhere.
LUXURY: Royal Palace Hotel
The convenient position makes it the perfect base to visit Turin. What will astonish you, is the architecture of the house and the beauty of the rooms. Some of them, even with a remarkable view of the city. This is truly one of the best places to stay in Turin if you are willing to splurge.
MID-RANGE: Corte Realdi Luxury Rooms Torino
The hotel is located in one of the two main squares of Turin, in a splendid historical palace. The interiors are decorated with a lovely taste. They offer Italian breakfast to all their guests. Some of their rooms have a fantastic view over the castle of Turin.
AFFORDABLE: Hotel Torino Porta Susa
The rooms are simple but modern and the position is great. You can walk to all the main attractions or take the metro to reach them. The closest metro station is located a few meters away. They offer you a buffet breakfast.
Fun facts about Turin
- Turin was the first place in Italy that showed a movie in a cinema.
- This is the birthplace of solid chocolate, it can be traced back to 1560.
- Turin was made the first Capital city of a Unified Italy in 1861, however, it was later moved to Florence in 1865 and Rome in 1870.
- The first subway in the world without a driver was opened in Turin
- Turin has unique fountains called Toret where water comes out from the mouth of a bull, make sure you find at least one.
- Turin is the birthplace of the cone for ice cream.
Further reading for the best things to do in Turin
Or read about other popular regions of Italy
Other useful tips for visiting Italy
🏠 Need a place to stay? Browse Booking or Agoda
💃 How about fun experiences? GetYourGuide and Viator have it all
🚗 Considering renting a car in Italy? Use Rentalcars
✈️ Looking for the best flight deals? Check WayAway
🔒 Don’t forget about travel insurance from HeyMondo
I am sure that this guide covers all the questions that you might have about Turin and helps you to sum up the best things to do in Turin that you want to add to your itinerary. Now it’s time to arrive in Turin and simply make the best of your time there.
I would love to hear your thoughts, so if you have any feedback or additional tips, leave a comment below. Also, check out my Instagram for regular travel videos and travel inspiration. Or explore other destinations on this travel blog.