Turin is a large city of about one million inhabitants, is set in the Piedmont region of northwestern Italy, an hour's drive from the French border and slightly more than that from the Mediterranean sea. It's famous for being the home of Italy's royal family. Today, Turin, with its fine, aristocratic atmosphere, old world sophisticated shops, grand boulevards and palaces, leafy parks, and several art galleries, is an increasingly popular tourist resort. The 2006 Winter Olympics, and its status the same year as World Book Capital, have prompted tourists to visit this beautiful and underestimated Italian city, which has a longstanding cultural and artistic history.
Turin was the first capital of modern Italy, and was the host of the 2006 Winter Olympic Games. While it's not a famous tourist destination like Florence or Rome, the setting is pleasant, with the Po River flowing through the city, the genteel hills overlooking the city and scattered with pleasant villas and surrounded by the Italian Alps off in the distance. This is why the famous architect Le Corbusier defined Turin as "the city with the most beautiful natural location in the world".
Many people consider Turin to be the European capital of Baroque: many palaces and churches were built in this style during the time of the kingdom of Savoy. Rather than a typical Italian city, with red and yellow buildings, Turin is more French; its wide boulevards and white buildings have earned it the nickname "the little Paris".