In an idyllic location over 1,500 metres above sea level, surrounded by the peaks of the Gran Paradiso National Park, Cogne is steeped in history, culture and traditions. It was once the hunting ground of King Vittorio Emanuele II and boasts a centuries-old crafting tradition, as showcased by the fine bobbin lace still made here today, as well as an abundance of locally produced wine and cheese.
It's a past worth discovering in person with a visit to the Maison de Cogne Gérard-Dayné – a museum house with complex architecture in wood and stone, representative of local rural constructions – and to the permanent exhibition of the sculptor Dorino Ouvrier, housed in the Atelier d'Arts et Métiers. And why not enjoy a coffee "Aosta valley style" (made with coffee, grappa, sugar, and orange and lemon zest) in the traditional friendship cup, a wooden container with various spouts allowing multiple friends to take a sip. The town retains the look of a mountain village with its slate-roofed houses, but it has successfully moved with the times, offering modern facilities and resorts as well as fairy-tale spas. In short, it's an elegant and understated gem, the perfect base to discover the national park.