Aosta stands at the junction of two of the important trade routes that connect France and Italy, the valleys of the Rhône and the Isère. Its significance as a trading post was recognized by the Romans, who built a garrison here in the 1st century BC, and the present-day layout of the streets is the clearest example you'll find of Roman urban planning in Italy. Well-preserved Roman walls form a perfect rectangle around the center, and the regular pattern of streets reflects its role as a military stronghold. Though its gray-stone buildings and slate roofing give a rather cold feeling to the town, Aosta has recently began to appear on several lists as one of the most livable towns in Italy.
For me, it was Borealis or bust--or both.More