What To Do in Cuneo?

Most tourists come to Cuneo in transit and are then surprised by the beautiful city, which has a lot of sights and can score with beautiful shopping streets. In the west of Cuneo are the Alps with the foothills of the Monviso, which are a popular hiking and mountaineering area. Cuneo is located in the arch of the southwestern alpine chain, surrounded by Monte Viso, Argentera, Rocca dell’Abisso and Bisalta.

The provincial capital, Cuneo, was founded in 1198 between the Stura and Gesso rivers. The city lies on the triangular plateau like a “cuneo”, a wedge.

The first settlement was on the highest point along Via Roma. In the Middle Ages, Cuneo was converted into a fortress. Due to its strategic location, the city has always been the site of power struggles and wars. Today about 60,000 inhabitants live in the provincial capital Cuneo.

What To See In Cuneo?

The arcades are typical of Cuneo. They cover around eight kilometers in the city center, where you can stroll comfortably even on rainy days. That makes Cuneo an attractive shopping city. Most of the arcades date from the Middle Ages and from the 17th to the 18th centuries to the Baroque. In Piazza Galimberti, on the other hand, there are arcades from the 19th century. Via Roma is the main street and runs through the historic center of Cuneo. It starts in Piazza Torino. Along Via Roma are the prefecture, bishop’s palace and the baroque church of Sant’Ambrogio, which is dedicated to the Milanese parish.

Through the beautiful arcades from the Middle Ages, you continue to Contrada Mondovì, the characteristic pedestrian zone with shops, where, among other things, the typical Cunesian products, sweets and antique items are offered. There are still some medieval buildings here. Before reaching the Church of San Sebastiano from 1320, one passes the synagogue from 1884.

The right part of the town hall is housed in a former Jesuit monastery from the 17th century. There are beautiful pictures and frescoes in the hall of honor.
In the courtyard of the Palazzo Municipale town hall is a copper reproduction of a model of a Ceirano car from 1903, a work by B. Ferrero. The brothers Giovanni Battista, Giovanni and Matteo Ceirano from Cuneo are among the pioneers in automotive engineering. From 1895 to 1919, they founded ten car factories in Turin.

Until 1775, Palazzo della Torre was the seat of the mayor. The Palazzo della Torre is located opposite the Palazzo Municipale. The tower is dominated by the Torre Civica city tower, the construction of which dates back to 1317 and the Peace of Cuneo and Mondovi.

In Piazza Virginio is the monumental complex of the former church with the San Francesco convent. Today the church is used for exhibitions and the convent and cloister as a city museum. Via Santa Croce leads to the Church of Santa Croce. It was built around 1710 by the Santa Croce Brotherhood in the Piedmont Baroque.

The Contrada Mondovì pedestrian zone is a popular shopping street with beautiful medieval houses, where you can find interesting shops. In between you will find the synagogue and the church of San Sebastiano with the slender bell tower. The Contrada Mondovì leads to Via Cacciatori delle Alpi, where the elegant facade of the former Santa Chiara church can be seen. The church is used as an auditorium and exhibition hall. Inside there are numerous frescoes and baroque stucco. To the side of the church is a memorial to Giuseppe Garibaldi, which commemorates his visit in 1859 to inspect the “Cacciatori delle Alpi” troops who were housed in the Clarisse complex.

Further in Via Roma we reach the Cathedral of Santa Maria del Bosco. The construction of the cathedral began in the year of Cuneo. Even before Cuneo was founded, there was a small church at this point, which was continuously rebuilt and expanded. The current shape of the cathedral dates from 1657/60 and the bell tower from 1665. The facade with the Corinthian columns was realized in 1865.

At the end of Via Roma you will find the large Piazza Galimberti. With 24000 m², the Piazza is the central main square and “Salon” of Cuneo. Every Tuesday, the square is transformed into an impressive open air market, which still attracts traders and visitors from Liguria and nearby France.

Cuneo is known for its chestnuts, the large sweet chestnuts, for which there are many tasty and sweet recipes, including chocolate specialties with chestnuts. The Cunese with rum are a typical sweet. They were first created by Andrea Arione in 1923 and are protected by a patent. The delicacy consists of 2 halves of meringue, filled with dark chocolate with rum cream and covered with dark chocolate. With and without rum, you can try this delicacy in most of Cuneo’s pastry shops.

You can also find black and white truffles around Cuneo.

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