11. Route. 51
The train quits the Tanaro and ascends. Beyond (6672 M.) Sale
delle Langhe is the Gallería del Belbo, a tunnel upwards of 3 M. in
length, the longest on the line. 7372 M. Cengio, in the valley of
the Bormida di Millesimo.
79 M. San Giuseppe di Cairo (1120 ft.), on the Bormida di Spigno,
through the valley of which the Acqui railway descends (see p. 52).
Interesting journey amid the deep ravines and precipices of the
Apennines. Tunnels and viaducts in rapid succession. 8772 M.
Santuario di Savona, a pilgrimage-church, founded in 1536.
9072 M. Savona, and thence to Genoa, see pp. 96-94.
b. Via Acqui and Ovada.
991/2 M. Railway in 6-83/4 hrs. (fares 18 fr. 60, 13 fr., 8 fr. 40 c).
The line at first runs at some distance from the left bank of the
Po, crosses its affluent the Sangone (beyond which the branch-line
to Pinerolo diverges, p. 44), and then the Po itself by a bridge of
seven arches. — 5 M. Moncalieri, commanded by royal cháteau
(p. 42). A final retrospect is now obtained of the hills of Turin,
and of the snowy peaks of the Alps to the left.
8 M. Trofarello is the junction for branch-lines to Savona and
Cuneo-Vievola (RR. Ha, 9).
The line from Turin to (I31/2 M., in ca. 3/t hr.) Ciiieri also diverges
at Trofarello. — Chieri (950 ft.), an industrial town with 11,900 inhab.,
contains a Gothic Cathedral (lith cent.) and a freely restored octagonal
Baptistery (I3th cent.), with an altar-piece by Defendente de Ferrari. — A
pretty road (diligence twice daily in lll2-l3/t hr.) leads to the E. from
Chieri, through an undulating wine-growing district, to Castelnuovo d'Asti
(775 ft.). This is within an hour's drive of the former Abbazia di Vezzolano
(said to have been founded by Charlemagne), the Romanesque church of
which (12th cent.; interior recently restored) has an interesting scnlptured
portal and contains a fine rood-loft and frescoes of the 15th century. The
adjoining cloisters are partly Gothic.
Beyond (1972 M0 Villanova d'Asti (853 ft.) the line enters the
fertile uplands of the Colli Torinesi (p. 29). — 3072 M. SanDamiano.
The train then crosses the Borbore and reaches the valley of the
Tanaro, which flows down to the Po through the valley between
the Colli Torinesi and the Apennines.
35 M. Asti (395 ft.; Albergo Reale; León d'Oro ; Rail. Restau¬
rant), the ancient Asta, a mediseval-looking town with 18,900 inhab.
and numerous towers, is famous for its sparkling wine (Asti spumante)
and its horticulture. The left aisle of the Gothic Cathedral, erected
in 1348, contains two altar-pieces by a master of the school of Ver-
celli. The adjacent church of San Giovanni (the sacristán of the
cathedral keeps the key) is built over an ancient Christian basílica,
part of which has again been rendered accessible, and has mono-
lithic columns with capitals bearing Christian symbols (6th cent.).
In the Piazza Alfieri is a statue of the poet Alfieri (1749-1803); the
house in which he was born was converted into an Alfieri Museum
in 1901. Near the Porta Alessandria is the small octagonal Bap-