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Giro d'Italia 2014

3 days in Piedmont along the wine route in the Langhe and UNESCO World Heritage

Cycling is the best way to discover a destination and live in sustainable style like a local. The region of Piedmont is perfect for every type of athletes from amateur to professional between hills and alpine mountains, from the lakes to the lowlands.

Take your time in Langhe area

The charm of rural life can be breathed through the vineyards of the Langhe and I suggest you to taste a glass of good wine, like Barbaresco and Barolo, just the same name of the places that the champions will cross during the tour.

The rural culture is much more than local products and that is why I want to give you some tips for this country experience:

  1. wander no hurry, among castles and historic houses that are found in many of these villages and small towns Langhe;
  2. dedicate yourselves to hiking through the vineyards to know the paths traveled for centuries by soldiers, merchants and pilgrims;
  3. still curious in visiting the wine museum and the museum of the corkscrew in the center of Barolo

Taste Fassona meat and piedmontese fritto misto

In this stage, the tour leaves the province of Cuneo with the departure from Fossano to reach the province of Turin and the valley of the Canavese.

Giro d'Italia 2014 stages
A rural area with its charming landscapes over the vineyards. Great place to relax!

Fossano was an important center of reference of the Savoy royal state due to its strategic position. In fact the Castle of Acaia was built in 1324 as a defense and became a noble residence under the dominion of Savoy. At the end of the 17th century it became a prison for the persecuted Waldenses (Christian religious movement); the next century until the end of the Second World War it was used as barracks. Fossano is renowned for the ‘Fassona‘ beef breeding, one of the finest Italian meats. Don’t miss: the Fair Veal Fat in spring and the Mirabilia International Circus & Performing Arts Festival in June.

Afterwards you can stop at  Rivarolo Canavese, in the Province of Turin about 30 kilometres north of Turin. Here you can eat a traditional Piedmont fritto misto drinking tipical Canavese wine (red, rosè, white, spumante) or DOC wine Erbaluce di Caluso (white, spumante, passito).

UNESCO World Heritage sites from the Royal house to the religious places

Also this stage in Piedmont touch 2 provinces: Turin and Biella.

Agliè is a Medieval town in the centre of the historical region of the Canavese, in the 20th century has seen a boom in the industry field thanks to companies like Olivetti in Ivrea. A romantic triumph of elegance you can find at the Castle of Agliè, Savoy Royal Residence, added to UNESCO world heritage list since 1997 with others Savoy Royal Residences that are located in Torino and its surroundings. The residence is used as the setting of Italian tv series.

Giro d'Italia 2014 stages
Inside the Canavese region there is a Royal Savoy residence: the Aglié Castle

The stage ends at Oropa, the city is developed on several levels and is surrounded by the Alps. The area of Biella links its history to the production of textiles and, in more recent times, to spiritual tourism, nature, cycling. The Sanctuary of Oropa is a group of Roman Catholic buildings and structures consisting of the Sacro Monte, from the original church and sanctuary and declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO. In the Baroque period was major expansion thanks to the patronage of the Royal Savoy and the work done by Filippo Juvarra and Guarino Garini. The sanctuary of Oropa is a Marian shrine – dedicated to the Black Madonna

The final climb of the Piedmont stage from Biella to the Oropa Sanctuary, 12.8 km long by 728 m in altitude, has a maximum slope of 13%.

By Valdengo in the Province of Biella Giro d’Italia leaves the Piedmont with the mountain stage to the Lombardy.

Finally, my tips about places to visit in Biella area:

  • A Zubiena is the eco-museum of Gold and Bessa. The territory of Elvo Valley is also known as the Valley of Gold, because from pre-Roman times up to the Renaissance period it has a tradition as prospectors area;
  • Must to visit Ricetto di Candelo, Medieval masterpiece of ingenuity and hard work of a community of small farmers, proud, pride, love of one’s country. It is one of the Borghi più belli d’Italia (i.e. the most beautiful hamlets in Italy). It is the best preserved of all the ricetti in Piedmont and represents the memory of the people of Candelo, who used it as a storage area for agricultural products in peacetime and as a shelter during times of war or danger.

See you next time in Piedmont!

Eleonora

I'm a Italy lover, mom of two, living in central Italy and I love travelling. I have a degree in Tourism economics and management and now I'm a consultant helping businesses working in tourism.

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