Turin’s (pop. 860,000) elegance is the direct result of centuries of urban planning graceful, church-lined avenues lead to spacious piazze. At the same time, Turin vibrates with modern economic energy as headquarters of the Fiat Auto Company and future host of the 2006 Winter Olympics. The city is also home to one of the more famous relics of Christianity: the Holy Shroud of Turin is housed in the Cattedrale di San Giovanni, behind the Palazzo Reale. The church is undergoing restoration, but remains open. (Open daily 7am-12:30pm and 3-7pm. Free.) The Museo Egizio, in the Palazzo dell’Accademia delle Scienze, V. dell’Accademia delle Scienze 6, boasts a world-class collection of Egyptian
SHROUD OF MYSTERY Called a hoax by some and a miracle by others, the Holy Shroud of Turin (a 1m by 4.5m piece of linen) was supposedly wrapped around Jesus’ body in preparation for burial after his crucifixion. Visible on the cloth are outflows of blood: around the head (supposedly from the Crown of Thorns), all over the body (from scourging), and, most importantly, from the wrists and feet (where the body was nailed to the cross). Although radiocarbon dating places the piece in the 12th century AD, the shroud’s uncanny resemblance to that of Christ precludes its immediate dismissal. Scientists agree that the shroud was wrapped around the body of a 57” man who died by crucifixion, but whether it was the body of Jesus remains a mystery. For Christian believers, however, the importance of this relic is best described by Pope Paul Vi’s words: “The Shroud is a document of Christ’s love written in characters of blood.” artifacts. (Open Su, Tu and F-Sa 8:30am-2pm; W-Th 2-7:30pm. €4, ages 18-25 €2. Under-18 and over-65 free.) One of Guarini’s great Baroque palaces, the Palazzo Carignano, V. dell’Accademia delle Scienze 5, houses the Museo Nazion-ale del Risorgimento Italiano, commemorating the 1706-1846 unification of Italy. (Open Su and Tu-Sa 9am-7pm. €4.25, students €2.50.) Begun as a synagogue in 1863, the Mole Antonelliana, V. Montebello 20, dominates Turin’s skyline. (Open Su and Tu-F 10am-8pm, Sa lOam-llpm. Elevator to the observation deck €3.60.) The Museo dell’Automobile, C. Unita d’ltalia 40, documents the evolution of the automobile, including prototype models of the Ford, Benz, Peugeot, and homegrown Fiat. From the station, head south along V. Nizza. (Open Su and Tu-Sa 10am-7pm. €2.70.)
Trains leave Porta Nuova on C. Vittorio Emanuele (011 531 327) for: Genoa (2hr. every hr. €8); Milan (2hr. every hr. €8); Rome (414hr. 5 per day, €38); and Venice (412hr. 3 per day, €31). The tourist office, P. Castello 161, has free maps. (011 53 51 81. Open M-Sa 9:30am-7pm, Su 9:30am-3:30pm.) To get to the clean and comfortable Ostello Torino (HI) O, V. Alby 1, take bus #52 (bus #64 on Su) from Stazione Porto Nuova to the 2nd stop past the Po river. Turn right onto C. Lanza, follow the signs to V. Gatti, and climb 200m up the winding road, f 011 660 29 39; firstname.lastname@example.org. Reception 7-10am and 3:30-llpm. Curfew 11:30pm; ask for a key if you go out. Closed Dec. 20-Feb. 1. Dorms €12.) Hotel Canelli , V.S. Dalmazzo 5b, has clean rooms in a quiet neighborhood. From the train station, take bus #52 to Cemaia, turn right down V. Gianone, and then turn left onto V.S. Dalmazzo. (011 53 71 66. Singles €24; doubles €32, triples €39.) Turin has grown into one of the great international centers of chocolate; Ferrero Rocher and Nutella are two of its more famous progeny. Via Mazzini has cheap fruit, cheese, and bread shops, along with a number of inexpensive eateries. Postal Code: 10100.