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Pragelato, Province of Torino, Piedmont, Italy

Province of Torino
Situated in a lovely small valley surrounded by woods of conifer plants near the Val Chisone, Pragelato is the second most important tourist resort in the valley after Sestriere along the Chisone river; the ski tracks reach almost the 2,341 m (7,680 ft) of the Punta Vallette summit.

Pragelato has become an important tourist resort thanks to an alpine amphitheater with optimal equipments for winter sports. Its tradition has many famous wine and food products such as honey, jams, liquors derived from roots and herbs. The traditional female costume is so beautiful that has its own Museum.

Info

  • Altitude: 1518 m a.s.l
  • Population: about 450 inhabitants
  • Zip/postal code: 10060
  • Phone Area Code: 0122
  • Frazioni & Localities: Allevè, Chezal, Duc, Fausimagne, Grand Puy, Granges, Jousseaud, Laval, Pattemouche, Plan, Rif, Rivets, Ruà (Capoluogo), Sèite, Souchère Haute, Souchères Basses, Troncea, Traverses, Villardamond.

History

Although evidence of human settlements since prehistory were found in this area, the first historical records date back to the foundation of the Benedictine abbey of Santa Maria in Pinerolo, in the late eleventh century. Between the eleventh and twelfth centuries it was under by the Dauphins of Vienne, as all the upper Chisone area, at the time called Val Pragelato. Later, together with other alpine areas, it joined the Republic of Escartons (1343-1713), which enjoyed a certain autonomy and included several other areas in Piedmont and France, though remaining under French jurisdiction.

In the fourteenth century, exactly on Christmas Eve 1386, the Waldensians escaping from French troops sought refuge on the slopes of Mount Albergian (3043 m), where many children died from the cold, and the survivors settled in Pragelato. In 1713 with the Treaty of Utrecht it was included in the Savoy dominions.

The nineteenth and twentieth century were marked by considerable migration to France. On April 19, 1904 an avalanche destroyed the huts of the workers in the mine at Beth, killing 81 people. Still today a plaque inside the small cemetery of the Laval township commemorates the victims of the disaster. In 1934 Sestriere, previously included in the jurisdiction of Pragelato, was made into a separate municipality.

What to see

  • The Regional Natural Park of the Val Troncea wich is rich in endemic flower and animal species.
  • The Parish Church, dedicated to the Assumption of the Virgin, built under Louis XIV
  • The Sanctuary of the Virgin of Snows, recently reconstructed.
  • The Museum of the Costume and Traditions of Alpine People..

Events

    Pragelato was one of the sites of the Winter Olympics Games of Turin 2006, with the following sport specialties:
  • ski jumping
  • cross-country skiing
  • Nordic combined: two disciplines for one gold, first ski-jumping then cross-country skiing. The area for the cross-country events was in the Valle Chisone, between Pattemouche e Granges, at an altitude between 1530 and 1620 m a.s.l. and consists of two 5-km-long rings and multiple side tracks.

Provinces of Piedmont