A museum out of a prison: this is what Turin did with “Le Nuove”. Built in the second half of the XIXth century, “Le Nuove” (aka “The New Ones”) had been the prison of the city for about a century. Before this place was erected, there were many little prisons in the centre of the city, each one for a specific subset of criminals. King Vittorio Emanuele II then wanted to concentrate every inmate in this huge building located on one of Turin’s main avenues.
Nowadays, Le Nuove hosts a museum. You can visit the cells, discover the stories of the people that were jailed inside during the years it was open and visit one of the most interesting spots if you like stories from World War II: an air-raid shelter that was built inside the prison, 18 metres deep underground, luckily discovered during renovations in 2010.
What makes Le Nuove special to me is their architecture:nowadays it’s like an island in an ocean of modern buildings. It looks like it refuses to move on and likes to stay there as a memory of what happened in the past. Not always a good memory to be honest, but definitely one to always have with you.
You may visit the museum every day of the week, but keep in mind that if you fancy visiting the shelter you have to go on Saturdays and Sundays.