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Landmarks in Piemonte

Dominated by the profiles of the highest summits in Europe, gently sloping in the hills covered with a mosaic of vineyards and castles of Langhe and Monferrato, down to the plains producing rice amid the many Po tributaries, Piedmont surprises the visitor with sudden valleys, small hamlets an hilltops, dark blue lakes up in the mountains, and the astounding gardens reflecting on the waters of Lake Maggiore.
Antiquity in Piemonte Castles and fortresses are everywere, on top of hills, amid green parks, in the center of towns, in the open plain, from the earliest medieval towers to the hunting residences of the Savoy Dukes, from walled towns to splendid mansions surrounded by gardens. A land with a long, glorious history of warriors, the land where the unity of Italy began first as a dream then was made real, a land of hard-working people, with the great city, Turin, right in the center, the ancient Savoy Capital, for some years also capital of Italy, today the seat of the Italian motor industry.

Around Turin there are many old, noble towns: Ivrea with its ancient cathedral; Cuneo, that survived seven sieges and was called "powerful and patient" by poet Giosué Carducci; the spa town of Acqui; Asti, birthplace of Vittorio Alfieri, with its majestic palaces; Alessandria that resisted the siege of Frederick the Redbeard; Biella with its smoking chimneys rising amid the Prealpi hills; Vercelli with its rich rice production; Novara with the high belltower of St. Gaudenzio, and the "sacred lands" with the once-powerful monasteries along the Via Francigena, the pilgrimage route from France to Rome.

Everywhere there is something beautiful to admire, some antiquity to visit, meeting Piedmontese people know for their stubborn and gentle character.

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