Porta Palazzo

April 3, 2012 / Events
Torino, Piemonte
Turin has many small neighborhood markets, just like any other Italian town. But THE market is called Porta Palazzo, after the area in which it is situated (a few steps away from the Royal Palace), and it is said to be the largest outdoor market in Europe.

In reality, a market has been there since the middle ages. The area has gone through many changes throughout history, not the least of which was inflicted by Napoleon, when he dismantled the old walls in 1800. The vast square was renamed Piazza della Repubblica after the fall of Fascism.

Today the market is composed of almost 1000 mobile stands selling food, household goods and clothing. Around 100,000 visitors come on Saturdays alone. It has always been a place for immigrants to find work, beginning in the1960’s with many Italians migrating from southern Italy. Now there are the new immigrants from all over the world, filling the air with a babble of languages and the stands with an assortment of goods not easily found in other cities.

On Saturday mornings the Balon takes place: it is the market of recycled and used articles. Reminiscent of the great souks of the Middle East, Porta Palazzo is definitely worth a visit. It is open every morning, and all day on Saturday, closed on Sunday.

Patricia Glee Smith

by Patricia Glee Smith

Accomplished artist and very involved archaeology aficionado based in Otricoli, Umbria. Click here to view her artwork.

3 Responses to “Porta Palazzo”

  1. Your pictures are divine! I could almost smell the fresh fruits and even then wonderful sardines.

  2. Gian Banchero

    The ever-so-great thing about markets such as Porto Palazzo is that one enters them with the intent of buying for one recipe and leaves having bought for several meals, I’m always at the mercy of the vendors (who are always happy to share their family recipes). Thank you Patricia for the wonderful photos and info, and yes Mr. Scaglione markets everyplace DO make one feel at home.


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