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Rental car location on outskirts of Turin ( west side)?

We will be in or near Turin next summer and I am trying to figure out a way to see Forte di Fenestrelle. The public transport option ( train to Oulx, then bus from there) looks tedious for a daytrip, so I am wondering if we would do better to rent a car for the day. But I am concerned about driving in the city (ZTL's) so would rather take the train from Torino Porta Nuova west to another town that has a rental car agency. But I can't find such a place. If I google " Oulx rental cars" the solutions appear to be taxi companies. And lots of links to Expedia, HotWire, Orbitz, etc., show up, but they all say "no results found" if I try to follow up.

Is anyone familiar with this area and might know of another town on the train line heading west (toward Bardonecchia) that is large enough to have a car rental,agency?

Or other suggestions? I have looked for tours from Turin but cannot find any. A private driver would be €€€.

Posted by
2521 posts

I rented and returned my car from Hertz at Corso Filippo Turati 37, 10128 Torino. The ZTL zone is the Centro storico northeast of the Porta Nuova rail terminal. I thought it far enough away that I would not have any problems with the zone and I didn’t. I found using Google maps GPS to keep me away from the area worked well. From that Hertz office, you will be going in the opposite direction from the ZTL.

Posted by
11683 posts

Thank you both. I have seen the bus schedule, and it takes 2 to 2.5 hours to go to Fenestrelle from Turin, each way. That seems long for a journey of 50 miles each way, although I know it is on slow mountain roads. My husband has a bad back and does not do well riding on a bus for long journeys. Trains are OK, or driving where we can stop and he can stretch and walk. Plus the bus schedule does not make it easy to actually visit the Forte.

They require a guided visit and while we would prefer the all-day tour, that departs at 9:00 am and would be impossible from Turin. The shorter 3 hour visit starts at 10 or 15:00 in summer. We “might” be able to get there from Turin in time for the 10:00 tour, but the 15:00 would be easier. But then we would have difficulty getting back to Turin. I looked at spending the night in Fenestrelle, but the listed accommodations ( there are apparently only 1 or 2 that would work for travelers without a car) are not offering reservations for July. So I am reluctant to plan on that.

Hertz is our preferred rental car provider, especially in Italy, so that might work. They do not show anything available for July so we will just have to wait. And I wonder if there are age restrictions: my husband will her 76 and I have read that there may be restrictions on car rental for people over 70 or 75. I am younger, but I do not like to drive in unfamiliar places. Our marriage works better if he drives and I navigate.

Posted by
786 posts

Hi, Lola. In 2016, I rented a car on the west side of Turin and took it straight out of town. It was an easy metro trip (3 or 4 stops) from Porta Susa train station, with car pickup at a Holiday Inn just across a piazza from the metro stop. Turin has a shiny new metro, with escalators and accessible ramps, so it was easy even with luggage. The agency was Europcar, not Hertz, though. Address:
TURIN OVEST DOWNTOWN
PIAZZA MASSAUA, 19/C
C/O HOTEL HOLIDAY INN - TURIN , IT

We dropped the car off at the airport, NW of town, which was also really easy to get to. Took a bus downtown to the train station to head to Rome, which went smoothly too.

It was my second time driving in and around Turin. First time was for World Masters Games in 2013, as we previously chatted about, and I didn't have any trouble either time. If you do want to poke around the centro storico before heading out of town, I'll share some good advice I received. There is a huge cemetery on the outskirts of the ZTL zone. It has a correspondingly large parking lot. We parked there on several days and took the bus right from there into downtown Turin.

Beautiful countryside. Since you're headed west, I strongly recommend stopping to see the huge pilgrimage cathedral in Avigliana, Sacra di San Michele. It is the regional symbol of Piedmont and is both stunning and lightly visited. And for a place to stay, try Certosa 1515, a monastery built in, yes, 1515, and now a centre for social justice and anti-Mafia workshops. Best stop of our 2016 trip.

Posted by
11683 posts

Nelly, thank you so much! This is just what I need to know. Now I just need to arrange with our tour guide to drop us off in Turin or nearby Novara after our hiking trip in Gran Paradiso National Park.

I see the next World Masters Games will be in Kansai, Japan. We were in Japan last month and absolutely loved it. It would be fun to go, but I don’t think either my husband or I will be ready to compete.

Posted by
786 posts

Since I’m moving far away from a rowing club this year, I won’t be competing either but I do hope to get to Japan someday. Sounds like you two are traveling a lot these days. That’s wonderful.

I really can’t say enough good things about our stay at Certosa 1515. It was so peaceful. I’m neither Catholic nor spiritual but I still felt at peace. We had a personal tour from one of the volunteers for the group that runs it and he told incredible stories about the work they do fighting the Mafia. Also the food in the onsite restaurant is fabulous. We spent hours wandering around the cathedral site at the top of a mountain and only saw about six other people. And of course Val di Susa is spectacular.

Hope it works out for you to get the car and get out of town.

ETA: nobody at Certosa spoke much English, so your husband will get to practice his Italian

Posted by
1769 posts

it's impossible to enter Turin's ZTL by mistake. You can Get your car in Via Nizza street, but there are offices also inside Porta Nuova station. Going to a smaller city by train would be a waste of time and you should avoid the ZTL there, too.

The bus takes ages because it must stop at any forgotten village along the way; you'll take the A55 motorway and the SR23, not the smaller mountain roads.