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    • Day 3

      Guten Morgen Rallye-Tag III

      June 3 in Italy ⋅ 🌫 2 °C

      Regen, 5 Grad, 0700 aufstehen, 0800 Frühstück, 0900 Abfahrt - das ist der Plan. Einige Pässe sind noch gesperrt, wir studieren die Karte … Heute abend ist Bergfest mit allen Rallye-Teams nördlich von Castellruth. We will still have a magnificant Journey🚙⛺️🏔🏁Read more

    • Day 3

      Day 3 - Moderate……..My Arse!

      June 3 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 16 °C

      We both slept well as we usually do in our tent, despite it raining for most of the night. We surfaced around 8.00am to discover a lovely sunny morning in Camping Darna. We faffed around as most campers do, with several coffees and a trip to the shop for breakfast supplies. We bought 4 rolls, Gouda slices, salami and butter.

      More faffing was done throughout the morning whilst we got ourselves properly sorted out. Initial impressions of the campsite are fantastic. It has everything we want and need. The staff are so polite and friendly, as are the other campers who all say hello with a smile. The view of Lake Lugano from the shoreline of our campsite is spectacular.

      After breakfast, around midday, we ventured out of the campsite for a planned 5.1 mile walk. This was after embarrassingly demolishing the bushes as I tried to reverse back out of our parking spot.

      We parked up in Porlezza & started my AllTrails App which was going to direct us on a 5.1 mile hike described as ‘Moderate’ difficulty. We set off along the shore of Lake Lugano, then headed inland before heading into Porlezza and up the mountain beyond. It started off nice and gently, but soon got steeper and steeper on rough tracks through the forested mountain.

      Halfway up the mountain we took a scheduled detour to Began Waterfall, which was pretty spectacular in that it cascaded down to a sun drenched pool. We were the only 2 people at this beauty spot, which made it even more special.

      It was after the waterfall that the trail got steeper to the point that we were scrambling up the path often on all fours. The occasional F word started to be heard behind me but before long the F word and every other expletive imaginable had increased in frequency to constant.

      We were looking forward to the downhill section but when it came, as most mountaineering people will know, it was worse. In fact it wasn’t just worse, it was horrendous. The path down was exceptionally steep either covered with loose rocks or on a concrete track with marble like stones scattered across it. We slip slided our way cautiously down with our toes jammed back into our feet. We skidded many times, but miraculously neither of us actually fell over.

      When we finally reached flat ground it was a massive relief. We hobbled back to the lake shore and walked along until we found a lovely lakeside cafe with a table in the sun calling our name. We ordered 2 large beers that were clearly going to be expensive, but even I didn’t care what they cost. Two beautiful well earned beers arrived along with a bowl of nibbles, so we sat back and enjoyed the view.

      My AllTrails app told me that we had walked a distance of 6.07miles (not 5.1), with an elevation gain of 1,604 ft, a moving time of 3 hours 42 minutes, 2,373 calories burnt and a total time 3 hours 59 minutes.

      We ordered a 2nd beer each. Sod the expense!! We basked in the sun for at least an hour until we decided it was time to head back to camp for a shower. I suddenly got all nervous about how much our beers were going to cost so I asked Jackie to pay and not tell me how much it cost. As it turned out, they cost just €20, an absolute bargain for the view and ambience.

      We returned back to camp and were greeted by our Dutch neighbours, who fancied a chat. We discovered that this was their second visit to the campsite and they were staying 3 weeks. They also very helpfully gave us some recommendations of things to do and see and where to eat.

      After a shower and a couple of gin and tonics, we returned to the campsite restaurant for more Sexy pizza. I also ordered a tomato and garlic pizza, which was too tomatoey! We will stick to just the one pizza in future.

      By 10pm we were both dead to the world in our tent.

      Song of the Day - Slip Slidin’ Away by Paul Simon.
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    • Day 3–4


      June 5 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 25 °C

      So, jetzt war es doch ein schöner Schlauch mit fast 11 Stunden fahren. Die Pause mal ausgenommen. Dann kam die Absage meines gebuchten Zimmers, die Vermieterin, hatte aber eine Alternative für mich. Siehe Bilder. Und das alles für 40 €👍😂
      Morgen lasse ich es dann etwas ruhiger angehen, mal schauen, wohin es mich treibt 🤗🛵
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    • Day 5

      Day 5 - Lake Como

      June 5 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 19 °C

      Woke up to gorgeous sunshine around 8.00am and a heron observing proceedings from the top of a tree. I cracked on with my domestic duties of hanging up our damp clothes, getting the coffee on and running to the shop for a couple of plain croissants for breakfast. I showered and waited another hour for Jackie to return from the shower block - nearly ready for the day.

      It was not too long after 10.30pm, that we drove out of the campsite and headed to Menaggio with the intention of catching a ferry across Lake Como to Varenna, which is famous for it’s olive oil. The plan was then to get a 2nd ferry to Bellagio, an apparently beautiful little town on a peninsula on Lake Como, then get the ferry back to Menaggio.

      We drove past little Lake Piano, which was behind us in a flash, then we wound our way down to the ferry port in Varenna. It was heaving with tourists and despite our best efforts we could not find a single parking place. I was going to blame Jackie for taking so long to get ready but I tactically didn’t!

      Instead, we decided to drive down to the town of Como and back along the western shore of Lake Como, then try again to find a parking place and catch a ferry. We headed south to the town of Griante, where we espied another ferry terminal called Caddenabbia and a pretty much empty car park beside it. We paid €3 for 3 hours parking and bought 2 return ferry tickets to Bellagio for €18.

      Half an hour later we were cruising across Lake Como on our 20 minute ferry crossing. When we arrived in Bellagio it was busy with tourists, but also smacked of money. After disembarkation, we strolled up and down a flowery promenade, then headed past the exceptionally expensive looking restaurants and hotels to the very end of the peninsula. We espied a suitable unobtrusive bar for a beer & sat down at a nice table. Unfortunately, or as it turned out luckily, there was only one waiter and after 15 minutes we still hadn’t placed our order for an overpriced beer, so we abandoned ship.

      After meandering around the backstreets of Bellagio, we dropped back down to the port and an half an hour later we were on the ferry heading back to Caddenabbia. We returned to the car and headed south hoping to find somewhere less busy (and expensive!) for a beer. Literally minutes later we found that place, Bar Roma, in Tremezzo.

      Bar Roma had an outdoor seating area overlooking Lake Como with an extremely attractive vista. We ordered 2 large beers and the waitress talked us into ordering their homemade local pasta dish. We didn’t even know what it was other than it was some sort of buckwheat pasta, mushrooms and cheese. It came with a bowl of bite sized chunks of bread and the beers arrived with a huge bowl of crisps. It was a pleasant lunch hour.

      We drove on down south along the western shore of the lake to the town of Como. The road was narrow, often reduced to just enough room for one vehicle at a time. Fortunately the road wasn’t too busy, but I dread to think what it would be like in the height of summer. The road provided a lovely drive with lots of picturesque churches and villas overlooking the lake.

      We parked up near Como’s impressive Cathedral. We had a quick run around the heaving town and popped inside the Cathedral. Como was architecturally attractive in the tourist areas around the cathedral, but it did have quite a few homeless people and beggars. We didn’t stay too long.

      We then selected a non toll road and non motorway route back to Camping Darna. Just outside of Como, we re-entered Switzerland, then embarked on a hideously steep and windy road that was made worse by its narrowness. Jackie was a nervous wreck, to the point of having an anxiety attack, as we squeezed past oncoming traffic. By strange coincidence and right on cue, my Spotify playlist started playing a song by Hurt which had the lyrics “We’re all going to die. We’re all going to die”. This really helped!

      Eventually we reached the summit and entered back into Italy. We were amazed to discover that there was a golf course, Golf Club Lanza, no distance from the summit. We careered back down the mountain with clenched buttocks as we squeezed past more traffic to Lake Lugano. We continued on to the Carrefour Supermarket in Porlezza, where we purchased all the necessary ingredients for a Chilli con carne, salad & another 5 litres of white wine.

      Back at camp Jackie cooked up the Chilli con carne, with considerable assistance from me by regularly stirring the pot. I also wrote my blog and chatted to Marco, our Dutch neighbour. We had a pleasant evening with G&Ts followed by red and white wine. The chilli was as expected delicious. I was even allowed 4 chocolate biscuits for dessert, after Jackie had had a bite out of each.

      The weather today had been a sunny 27 & 28 degrees around Lake Como and we were treated to a lovely dry balmy evening back at the campsite for our alfresco dinner.

      Song of the Day - That (Such A Thing) by Hurt.
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    • Day 59

      Day 59: Lake Como to Lugarno

      June 11 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 17 °C

      Thanks to the kids we visited Villa del Balbianello. This is where scenes from Star Wars ep 2 were filmed. Magnificent setting. Walked the lower level of Lenno and had a quick dip in Lake Como. Ate Chinese cos sick of Italian food. Met aussies Scott and Tanya from Ballarat and Zac from QLD. When the rain hit lunch turned into an all in Aussie drinking session. At 7 when the rain settled we hoofed it to Lugano Switzerland.Read more

    • Day 10

      Como to Belaggio

      August 26, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 19 °C

      Walking up in Como with a view of the lake is devine. Our first hot breakfast of bacon and eggs.

      We book a hydrofoil to Bellagio.
      45 minutes at 14.00 euro.
      I spot George Clooney's villa Oleandra. His speedboat is parked out front.

      We embark at Bellagio. It is small and quaint and much quieter than Como.

      Lunch is at a restaurant called Suisse on the waterfront. Another chardy another onion soup.

      We walk through the streets, up steep cobblestone walkways with shops on each side.

      I buy a little hand fan. We sit in the shady gardens overlooking the lake in the coolness as it is very warm today.

      We head toward Villa Melzi and we are lucky to find it open until 6.30. It is 5pm. So a wander around the botanic gardens with species of trees and plants from all over the world. The main villa is closed but we walk through the family chapel and museum.

      On our map it shows WC which I am in need of, so I tell Athena I am looking for the water closet. I come back all happy 😊 it is then that she learns that I went to the Loo. Well off she went herself.

      Enjoying my leisurely stroll, next minute I roll my ankle for the 3rd time on this trip. Almost fall down the hill. I expected Athena to be laughing but she looked horrified.

      We come out of the Villa exactly on gate closing time. Walk back to the town and we find out the ferry does not go to Como and are told to take the bus. I thought that is ridiculous. We walk further up to the little Port and walk straight on a Hydrofoil. Which zooms us home across the water. Athena nearly falls asleep on the boat so we head up to our room for a nap.

      At 9.30pm, we decide to get dinner otherwise we will wake at midnight starving.
      I had the home made spaghetti with seafood. God it was good. Then off to bed.
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    • Day 2

      2. Tag: Start in Bormio

      September 8, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ❄️ 4 °C

      Wir sind gespannt, ob wir heute über der Splügenpass und den San Bernadino fahren können. Es hat geschneit und schneit noch.
      Ziel ist heute die Partylocation bei Valenza.
      Hoffentlich ist dort das Wetter besser.Read more

    • Day 2

      Alpine Berg Weihe

      September 8, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ❄️ -3 °C

      Wir haben die traditionelle Berg-Weihe vollzogen.
      Dazu benötigt man Wasser aus einer Bergquelle in Deutschland, einen Tannenzapfen aus Österreich und Granitgestein aus Italien. Jedes Teammitglied muss die 3 Elemente in der Hand halten und dazu barfuß im Schnee stehen.Read more

    • Stage 2: mehr Regen, noch mehr Schnee

      September 8, 2019 in Italy ⋅ 🌧 5 °C

      Noch mehr Straßensperren, mehr Regen mehr Schnee.
      Das einzige wo im Landy kein Wasser rein laüft ist das Stoffdach!!!! 😜😂🤣

      Kleine Kontrolle beim Tanken darf natürlich nicht fehlen, die 1,5L Öl hat er sich gut schmecken lassen.Read more

    • Day 5


      October 9, 2019 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 16 °C

      Auf einer Halbinsel am Südufer liegt Sirmione, herrlicher Ort, jedoch bedeutend mehr los! Zur Zeit der Römer entstanden hier 3 Villen, übrig geblieben sind die „Grotten des Catull“.
      Eisdielen gibts hier an jeder Ecke und die Spaghetti Vongole waren perfekt!Read more

    You might also know this place by the following names:

    Lombardia, Lombardei, Lombardy, Llombardia, Lombardía, Lombardie, 롬바르디아 주, Lombardije, Lombardiet

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