This weekend we found ourselves in Murazzano. Most of you have probably never heard of this tiny town whose population is in decline (about 870 people). Some of you may know it though for their famous cheese Murazzano DOP. Traditionally it is a soft sheep’s milk cheese which can allow up to 40% cow’s milk. I remember the first time I ever tasted this creamy, flavorful and rich cheese at the Slow Food Cheese event in Bra it had a lasting effect on my mind and my palate. Murazzano is in the higher part of the Langhe Valley which leads to the Ligurian sea in the part they call “Alta Langa”.

I bet you never would have guessed that there was a “Safari” Park among these vineyard covered hills! After years of hearing about it, we randomly decided to see what this safari was all about. On a side-note, this was very out of character for me being a zoo hater and a vegetarian! I went into this all with a very skeptical attitude but with a certain curiosity about the area. At 13 euros a person, I was in fact disappointed. There was a feeling of melancholy to the place, with a lifeless bear asleep in the corner of a cage, pent up monkeys, and what seemed like quite unkept farm animals roaming around. One of the high points was seeing the lions and tigers up close from our car (especially since we were in Piemonte!). The wide open area for the Bison, Gnus, etc. made me feel slightly better about this experience but I still felt bad for these poor animals.

Seeing captive animals is never a nice sight but to end this post positively, I must say that I think it is a good thing that the Italian wine country offers a fun alternative for children. It would be even better if they improved the look and feel of it, giving it a more kid friendly and fun atmosphere. Wine tasting can even get boring for adults sometimes so this could be a potential idea for a family activity in Piemonte!

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