Pinerolo is the “big” town at the mouth of Val Chisone, and is the closest train station which is about 1o miles from Bella Baita. Val Chisone, Germanasca and Pellice are sometimes referred to as the Pinerolo valleys.
Pinerolo is a charming town which really comes to life on market days held on Wednesdays and Saturdays, 7 am till 12:30 or 1pm. This large year round open air market in the center of town has been offering up the local farmers wares in this same area, for over 1,000 years. We are spoiled for choice with all the varieties of cheese from this area. You’ll find what’s in season and fashion as well as much to drool, sample and puzzle over.
If the market doesn’t take care of all your shopping needs, then there is our very own “Eataly” store. If you are not familiar with this store, it is a large store offering all the specialties of Italy that are traditional and crafted in the “Slow Food” tradition that was born here in Piedmont. It is an experience to not only discover the hearth baked bread, many different varieties of pasta, rice, oils and wines from all parts of Italy, but be able to eat these product in the store as there is a dining area in the center of the store and a wood fired pizza made with natural leavening and in summer an outdoor dining area. Worth a wander through.
Old town has the covered arcades that makes shopping in the many and varied smart shops that entice and seduce the strongest of wills, to do so even if the weather is might be less than ideal. You’ll find a variety of delicious places to eat and drink a coffee with a fresh pastry or chocolate or an aperitivo with snacks if you like as well and even a bookstore with English books stocked and an indoor cafe. Pinerolo has an annual celebration every year on the first weekend of October celelbrating the Mystery of the Mon in the Iron mask. He was held in Pinerolo prison for 11 years. This weekend of recreation of his arrival, escorted by the famous musketeers, brings out the period costumes and festivities fitting this mysterious and curious piece of history.
The main church, San Donato, in the center of the old town is a lovely old gothic style church with blue ceiling and stars and murals recently refurbished. San Maurizio at the top of town is worth the short walk up past the original Senate building form the time of when Torino was the capitol of Italy, to the top of town for a good view of where the alps meet the plains, with Monviso peak, impressively looming in the distance.
There is an interesting free museum commemorating Pinerolo’s history as having been the original home of the Italian Calvary and school and a variety of small museums of history and science.
Wine tasting is possible near Pinerolo. at some of wineries that are part of Torino’s wine road. La Strada Reale dei Vini Torinesi.