Piemonte, in the north west part of Italy, is the second largest region in Italy, has borders with France and Switzerland, and the Italian regions of Lombardy to the east, Liguria to the south, Aosta valley to the west and for a very small part Emiglia Romagna. It is surrounded on three sides by the Alps thus making the region almost 75% either mountainous or hilly. Because of the terrain, Piemonte is renowned for both skiing and walking, whilst Lake Maggiore is famous for its beauty and stunning scenery.
Access to the region can be by both air and land, with the major airport being at Turin, the capital of the region, with regular flights from UK airports whilst Milan (in the neighbouring region of Lombardia) has regular flights from most UK airports and is easily accessible. Among the other major cities of the region are Verbania on the shores of Lake Maggiore, Asti and Cuneo. Turin is the home of FIAT, the largest car producer in Italy.
Some of the most famous wines of Italy are produced in this region, with more than half of the vineyards registered as DOC producing. The most prestigious of these are the reds of Barolo and Barbaresco from the area around Alba, and the sparkling wine of Asti.
Autumn is the rich season in Piemonte, and the time to collect the famous truffles, which the farmers do after the grape harvest has been completed. One of the Piemontese specialities is "agnolotti," pasta made with eggs stuffed beef, pork, or rabbit, flavoured with sausage, parmesan cheese, eggs and herbs. "Risotti" or rice dishes are another speciality, often covered with truffles. In past times a "risotto" might compose the entire meal, enriched with "funghi porcini" (mushrooms), fondue, eels and frogs from the Po River, little birds on a spit, and other delicacies.
The choice of properties for sale in Piemonte can vary greatly. With larger country houses in the hillside, apartments in the skiing areas or beside the beautiful Lake Maggiore, or apartments in towns such as Verbania, Stresa or the less well know town of Alba. The region is a mixture of inexpensive properties in the expanses of the countryside to the more prestigious ones around the lake.