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13 incredible royal palaces in Torino


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Existing for centuries at the heart of the Savoy reign, as well as being the first capital in the Italian Kingdom, Torino overflows with royal architecture.

In fact, during their time in power between the XVII and the XVIII century, the Savoys filled every corner of Piemonte with centres of power: castles for hunting, summer retreat villas, and several other physical demonstrations of their elegance and wealth.

In 1997 14 of these magnificent royal residences were included in the UNESCO World Heritage List. Check out some of the astonishing architectural feats below.

1. Castle of Agliè

300 rooms and an afrescoed ballroom, formerly belonging to the marquises of San Martino, the Castle of Agliè served as a summer retreat.

2. Castle of Moncalieri

The Castle of Moncalieri started off as a fortress built by Thomas I of Savoy around 1100 to command the main southern access to Turin, but then was swiftly turned into a pleasure residence. It almost burned down in a fire in 2008.

3. Castle of Racconigi

The magnificently wide park surrounding the royal residence the Castle of Racconigi also includes a Russian dacha, built to honour tsar Nicholas II when he visited Piemonte to sign a treaty. 

4. Stupinigi Hunting Lodge

Stupinigi was the House of Savoy's favorite building, to be used for celebrations and dynastic weddings.

5. Castle of Valentino

Fittingly, the Castle of Valentino is now the seat of the Architecture Faculty of the Polytecnic Faculty of Turin.

6. Carignano Palace

The Carignano Palace sits in the smack centre of Turin, and it is home to the Museum of Risorgimento.

7. Madama Palace

Madama Palace was the first Senate of the Italian Kingdom. The palace takes its name from the influence that the queens (madama) had upon the architectural changes over time.

8. Royal Palace

In 1694 the Chapel of the Holy Shroud, currently treasuring the Holy Shroud, was added to the structure.

9. Villa della Regina

The property was built as a private villa with its own vineyard, so is also sometimes called the Vigna di Madama.

10. Govone Castle

The southern façade of Govone Castle was designed by Guarino Guarini, and its northern counterpart by Benedetto Alfieri, pupil of late-Baroque architect Filippo Juvarra.

11. Castle of Pollenzo

Today the Castle of Pollenzo is home to the University of Gastronomic Sciences, which offers programs focused on gastronomy and food tourism.

12. Castle of La Mandria

AKA the largest enclosed park in Europe, with a surface of some 3,000 hectares.

13. Palace of Venaria

Charles Emmanuel, keen to leave a memorial of himself and his wife,  bought the two small villages of Altessano Superiore and Altessano Inferiore and created this property. Currently it holds art shows, fountain shows and fancy costume dinners hosted by Nuit Royale.

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