Ideally the Holidays in Turin should last at least 2 weeks from around December 21st to January 7th to have enough time to do some Christmas shopping and organizing some days. Always consider that on the holidays and national days, most Italian businesses and museums are closed 😟
As we have already given you a preview of our very own Turin Christmas this post is about the days that straddle the old and the new year with a link to La Befana day aka January 6th, nobody would want to miss her, right?
|in a downtown 18th century palazzo courtyard
Life goes back to normal on December 27th, and many businesses reserve these last couple days of the old year to their most loyal customers who can benefit from an early sale season. The Italian sales seasons are two as per national regulation, in the winter, in Turin, they usually start on January 7th. December 26th is a national holiday.
So before buying, we recommend you ask if there are already some reductions and more often than not you will be surprised to hear a whispered 'si' in your ear 😉
Besides the restaurant reservation for New Year's Day, your top priority is to get yourselves some new red underwear, even only 1 piece to wear on January 1st. Do it Italian style and get red undies for everyone in your family: from the nonni to your new born baby, you'll feel the local culture maximized.
If undies are not an option, get yourselves at least a pair of red socks, pantyhose or a red shirt to sport on New Year's day. Red and new are going to be your key words here!!
|old picture not to spoil the new and more daring models...
Most restaurants in Turin offer a festive menu both on December 31st and on January 1st. Usually, the locals go to a big party with friends 👯 on NYE to watch the fireworks in good company and then, they celebrate January 1st with la famiglia 👪.
Like in most Italian piazzas, Turin will also have her city Capodanno or New Year's Eve celebration: a free event open to everyone who wants to go, in 2019 there will be 100 waltz dancers in Piazza Castello. Please, inquire about the security regulations, you might not be able to bring your own bottle of foamy wine as in the past years.
The New Year's menus are huge menus with all the traditional local specialties, we suggest you to diet the day before to make enough room to try a bit of everything. We are really talking about a 3+ hour meal from the amuse-bouches with a welcome cocktail to the digestive bitter shot after the coffee.
... in the most upscale places, lemon sorbet is served between the courses to 'wash' your palate... yes, that much you will be eating 😆
So, make room for seasonal vegetables, roasts, mea filled ravioli, fish, decadent chocolate desserts, full-bodied wines, sparkling wines and custards, risottos, an endless list of appetizers, panettone and pandoro.
|3 old befanas with their broomsticks and pricey sugar coal
Dinner or lunch, remember that on January 6th, La Befana flies on her broomstick and brings you a stocking full of sweets. This Roman tradition is celebrated in Turin and you can buy already made stockings or make your own, choosing a different piece, from the handmade stocking to the artisan-made nougat, chocolate coins to the sugar coal pieces for the naughty ones, from different shops.
Strolling downtown and going to the Porta Palazzo market and other neighborhood markets you will see the Befana stocking is very picturesque and makes for a great souvenir. We encourage you to always get something extra whatever you buy, so you have something for yourselves to enjoy back home.
|Ceramic artist, Stefania Mairano welcoming to her workshop
We also remind you that spending 2 weeks in Turin, allows extra time to the local artisans to complete the custom order you placed in advance before making it here in town but also that the real Italian luxury are the holidays. So don't expect any artist to be working on during the holidays: this is our precious personal time, no amount will ever buy.
On the other hand... you will be able to arrange the shipping and delivery to your home of the beautiful things you buy here.
To sum up your top priorities between the end of the old year and the beginning of the new one:
- reserve your restaurant
- get your new red undies
- compose your own Befana stocking to gift to your dear ones
The Holidays in Turin will really give you the feeling of living like a real local, you might hear some French spoken here and there but looking around, you won't detect any tourists... yet!
So, come over before everyone else knows about this corner of Paradise full of royal castles, gilded churches and coffee shops with golden cupids.
We are waiting for you!