Torino and the Impressive Scenario
It was my birthday and my best friend had just moved to Torino. For people who love to travel, any excuse is already a good one to hit the road (or the air), but combining it to the visiting my best friend after 8 months apart and enjoying my delicious second citizenship country was definitely a MUST DO combination. Simon and I scheduled the flights, reserved a nice Airbnb studio apartment and hit to Torino from 12 to 15 November 2017.
How to go from Berlin to Torino
There are no direct flights from Berlin to Torino. Our first thought was to simply hit the road and enjoy the nice autumn view on the way. Maybe stopping by Austria and enjoying the beautiful almost-winter scenario around there. This was very tempting until I got an e-mail from Ryanair with a great ticket offer of Berlin – Milano for just € 9,99 each way (per person, of course). Then we checked the Flixbus from Bergamo Airport (yes, the Milano low-cost airport is actually in Bergamo) to Torino and both ways for both of us would be just € 40,00. A total of € 80,00 euros for the way there. It was surely a good offer.
If we decided by going by car, just with Gas we would go over that price. Not mentioning the tools to cross Austria and also in Italy. So, looked like a very good option. We left the adventurous spirit out of our decision and we picked the cheapest option.
Few days before our travel I got a super offer of car rental from Ryanair, for only € 20,00 for all the time. This was cheaper than the bus and we would be super flexible in Torino. Why not?! I reserved it (in my name, because it was combined with the flight ticket that I also bought on my name), cancelled the Flixbus (paid a fee of € 1,00 euro per ticket) and got very happy that we would have a car in Italy.
The travel day
Of course that sometimes things go wrong. You can even have a zodiacal blame on the period prior to the birthday when usually the stars and planets tell us that things might go wrong. If you don’t believe in this astral thing, then just consider it bad luck or service incompetence from some companies. As you wish.
We took our early morning flight peacefully, all running on time. I highly recommend you to have opened windows by the time you are arriving, because the view of the Alps from the aeroplane is stunning!
We landed in Bergamo and it was super easy to find the car rental area. You just have to exit the arrival area and turn left still at the airport. We got to our reservation company, took a number and waited approximately half an hour – or a bit more than that. When our time arrived, I took the paper to the woman and I said: well, the driver is Simon because I still don’t have a European drive license. Well, that was not possible. I should have made the reservation in the name of the driver and there were nowhere I could change that. I tried to call the hotline from the company, but no one could change that.
The fact is that Ryanair doesn’t pay them if they handle the car to someone else, but not the person who reserved it. Also, Ryanair doesn’t really want to pay anyone, so they use all the excuses possible to not pay. I even don’t blame the poor woman on the counter, because she has to work with their system and everything is blocked. After half an hour trying to solve it, I could not take the car and GUESS WHAT! Ryanair also didn’t give my money back for the rental. Even though I told them that they should specify that on the reservation form. Well, remember that they don’t want to pay anyone? So, that’s it. To get my money back, I would have to go legal and this would cost me more than that.
What did we do then?
Well, we discovered another way to get to Torino that it is not Driving and not taking the bus: we would take the shuttle bus to Milano Centrale (costs € 5,00 and takes approximately half an hour) and from there we would take the train to Torino (€ 12,45 per ticket). It is not a bad option and takes around 1 and a half hours. So, we finally arrived in the beautiful and sunny Torino.
The city is quite small – when you compare it to Berlin or Milano – and a bit empty, but the scenario is breathtaking. Because of its plain streets in some angles, you can see the beautiful Alps. From the lower level of the city you see the Italian ones, but from higher places, you can see also the French Alps. It is indeed a beautiful view.
Our apartment was very well located in the San Salvario neighbourhood. It is not the city centre, but it is pretty easy to walk all around in Torino and the city is also well equipped with subway and buses. The tickets cost € 1,20 for 90 min and you must buy them in a Tabacchi (the place where they sell cigarettes and are identified with the letter “T” on the outside).
If you are going to Torino and you are searching a very nice cost x benefits place, you should check it out Joe’s Apartment. It was an amazing surprise and if we go back there, we are going to stay there again.
What to do in Torino
There are two museums that they are very proud of: the Egyptian Museum and the Cinema Museum, but we didn’t attend any of those. We had just 3 days in the city and we wanted to enjoy the streets and sightseeing a bit more. The nice weather increased our wish to stay out: it was sunny, a beautiful blue sky and the temperatures were around 18ºC. When you come from the grey and wet Berlin, all you want is to be outside.
So, for the first day, we decided to walk along the “Parco Del Valentino”, which is a very beautiful green area along the River Pó. The scenario was also stunning, the autumn colours made that walk really pleasant and the squirrels were super cute and friendly. While walking in the park, we got to the Borgo Medievale, which is a very detailed replica of a medieval village. It is super beautiful and full of information. The best part: it is for free!
We ended the day having a nice typical Italian snack time back to our apartment: bread, wine and some delicious Antipasti. Well, when you are in Italy you got to go for that because it is not only cheaper around there, but extremely tasty!
On the second day, we went for a walk in the city centre. There are many nice things to see around there: the Royal Palace, The Madama Palace (picture below), the Palatine Towers and the nice squares like the “Piazza Castello”, for example. It is a very charming city to walk around. For dinner, we recommend some Pizza. Besides it is not the best Italian Pizza you are going to have, it is still a must-have in Italy.
On our third day, we decided to make a small going up to the Superga mountain. A mountain in the surroundings of Torino that got really famous in 1949, when a horrible tragedy happened. The aeroplane carrying the entire football team of Torino crashed on the back wall of the Basilica di Superga (picture below), the church located on the top of the mountain. All the 31 occupants of the aeroplane died immediately. In 2008 a memorial was launched on the accident point, to honour the memory of the victims. That was the most tragic accident involving athletes until 2016 when the entire Brazilian football team Chapecoense and direction members also died in a horrible aeroplane crash in Colombia.
To get there we took public transportation and enjoyed the amazing view going up and afterwards, the view from there:
To go back we decided to go wild and we adventured ourselves in the mount. There are ready trails to follow in case you want to go for some hiking. All the way down took approximately 2 hours.
After the long way down we went back to the city centre to see the Cinema Museum form the outside. It stays inside the postcard building of the town, the Mole Antonelliana. The landmark is almost 168 metres tall and has the best view of the city. The visitation can be done without the need of visiting the museum or you can combine your ticket.
Torino, ci vediamo presto!
The beautiful city has a lot of things to see. Especially you have more time to explore also the surroundings. We are certainly going back there soon and share more experiences with you. Keep your eye around here and Join Me There!