November chill,hot thermal springs

Paloma our motorhome is parked in the official town sosta (N44.66517 E8.47043) of one of the prettiest towns in the Monferrato area of Piedmont, Acqui Terme and we are sharing the place with loads of other motorhomes, but a quick walk around the carpark confirms only one thing – every last one of them is Italian and I can see why ! Run by the local police and at a cost of only €8 per 24 hours we have electrical hook-up and the use of a full service point.

Ohh electricity !

Bargain priced Italian Sosta
The Piemontese speak very little English, but are doing their best to make travelers feel welcome. The local police man brought us a selection of touirst information, with an odd English paragraph.

The nice girl in the cafe ran through every possible cossaint filling in fast Italian at least three times  whilst we made up our made up our minds and bumbled through the ordering – but at least we are getting better as we got what we asked for ! 

The locals seem so happy when travelers like the area, lots of smiles and “ciao’s”as we walk about- It makes them feel proud, even though they don’t necessarily see why anyone would want to come here voluntarily.

Acqui Terme has been an important town since being founded between the 1st and 2nd centuries B.C. Named Aquae Statiellae by the Romans it became a thriving trading town and many important structures were built, including the aqueduct, part of which still stands today. It was not until the 17th century that the city became famous for its thermal springs but after World War II, these deteriorated and it is only recently that a major restoration of the city has taken place. 

Roman history never ceases to amaze me!

Due to its strategic position and the abundance of the thermal springs, Rome decided to transform it to one of the most important spa cities in the north of Italy.

 It is hard to imagine towns that have existed since the first century B.C

The River Bormida divides the town in two, the old town and the new town.

On the right hand-side of the Carlo Alberto bridge, you can admire the impressive ruins of the ancient roman Aqueduct from Augustan times, and the huge structure is just there for you to walk around and marvel at . 

ancient roman Aqueduct- Italy by motorhome blog
 The central meeting point of this fascinating city is Piazza d’Italia which lies on the edge of the old town. Cafes overlook beautiful flower gardens and the steps of water that cascade from the waterfall.

Italian motorhome blog -Piazza d’Italia
Cobblestone streets lead from here through the old town which are lined with elegant shops, homeware stores, fabulous food shops and inviting restaurants.


Acqui Terme is famous because of its thermal springs. Infact, Acqui Terme means thermal waters. These waters reach the surface in Piazza Bollente. Here a marble edifice, La Bollente has been built. You can see the steam rising from the waters which are usually at a temperature of 75 degrees Celcius. Of course I had to test the water and can vouch for it being very hot!


But the bit I love, is it has a feeling of reminding me of Totnes in Devon.

It’s kind of hip, which is weird, it has four homeware designer shops, at least ten  cool fashion boutiques, numerous fabulous restaurants and even more great cafés AND a very hip bar scene where the trendy people can go to show off their Designer labels 

It makes no sense, considering this is the heart of agricultural wine country but it deffiently has that vibe.

Paul.

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