The city was founded in pre-Roman times by the Taurini and was initially called Taurasia. During the Roman period it was made a military camp and renamed Augusta Taurinorum. During the 1500s, it emerged as an important city with the Royal Savoy family officially moving to Turin. The Risorgimento in the 19th century, Italy became a unified nation and named Turin as its first capital before Florence and Rome. In 1899 Fiat was founded in the city.
Culture - what to do in
Turin is considered to be the baroque capital of the world with many Royal Residences, church domes and architectural masterpieces created during the 17th and 18th centuries. Go and see the Turin Shroud in the Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist. Turin has one of Italy's oldest universities, featuring numerous beautiful historic buildings. The aperitif was born in Turin in 1786 with Vermouth. Turin is famous for making beautiful chocolate and hosts a two-week chocolate festival every year. The city has a rich intellectual culture. Turin attracted numerous literary figures from the 17th century onwards, culminating in the foundation of a significant publishing house after World War 2. It was the birthplace of Italian cinema when Giovanni Pastrone made his groundbreaking feature 'Cabiria' in 1914, one of the first blockbusters in history. Today it is one of the main cinematographic and television centres in Italy.
You have a very wide choice of things to do in Turin. Don't miss the Shroud of Turin in the Cathedral, the linen cloth that bears the image of a man who was apparently crucified - controversially thought to be the body of Christ. Make sure you also take in the baroque masterpiece Basicila di Supergra; Palazzo Madama; Museo Egizio and the Palatine Towers. For something more lighthearted, go on The Italian Job tour and see the actual locations of this classic film shot in Turin in the 1960s.
Located in northwest Italy, Turin is surrounded by the Alps towards the west and north and to the east by the hills of Monferrato. Four major rivers pass through the city.
Turin is well known for its abundance of baroque, rococo, neo-classical and Art Nouveau architecture. Many of the city's piazzas, castles, gardens and palazzi were built by Sicilian architect Filippo Juvarro, who drew inspiration from Versailles. French-themed edifices include the Royal Palace of Turin, the Stupinigi Palazzina and the Basicila di Superga.
When you're deciding what to do in Turin, consider timing your trip to coincide with one of the many major annual events including the Chocolate Festival in Febbruary, the Turin International Book Fair in May, the Feast of Turin's patron Saint John the Baptist in June, the Hall of Taste in October and the Turin Film Festival in November.
Turin has one international airport known as the Caselle International Airport Sandro Pertini, connected to the city by a railway service and bus service. Moving through Turin is easy and good value with plenty of tramcars and buses.