A municipality in the province of Turin, located in a strategic point from which it is possible to easily reach France, Switzerland, Val d'Aosta, the province of Biella and the rest of Piedmont. It is still well preserved and features a main center with typical medieval houses. Borgofranco is famous for its "Balmetti": currents of air and humidity that at a constant temperature come out from natural cavities and are used to preserve agricultural products in specially designed storage rooms. This natural resource has been used since ancient times.
In ancient times the area was inhabited by Salassi, a population of Celtic-Ligurian origins, that for years struggled to combat the occupation by the Roman army. The invaders eventually took over and colonized the territory in 22 B.C. With the fall of the Roman Empire was became a domain of the Byzantines, then the Lombards, and finally the Franks. The village was founded at the behest of the Bishop of Ivrea and the Marquis of Monferrato in the XIII century. In the next century Borgofranco was ruled by the Savoy, except in the XVI century, when it was contended between the French and the Spanish. In 1623 the Duke of Savoy ceded the territories in fief to the Marquis Marini, who ruled with his Family until the dynasty died out and then the lands returned to the Savoy family to be ceded only a few years later as a county to Giovanni Palma.
Not to miss:
- the XVI century Parish Church of Our Lady of the Rosary and of Saints Maurizio and Germano, which became a parish in the XVIII century. The main entrance is decorated with a fresco depicting the Madonna and Child;
- the Church of Santa Marta built in medieval times, was enlarged in the XVII century;
- the Romanesque Bell tower in the hamlet of San Germano;
- Palazzo Marini, expanded in the XVII century and flanked by a tower of the XIII century. Located in the medieval main center, it is composed of a noble residence and a large courtyard. It features a wide staircase, on which is painted "the myth of Persephone", and an arcade with XVII century mural decorations;
- the Ricetto (old Shelter);
- the Balmetti (the old storage rooms);
- the Municipal Library.