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    • Day 9

      Les paisibles îles Borromées

      March 23, 2023 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 18 °C

      Aujourd'hui, excursion sur 3 des îles du lac majeur ☀️.

      Isola Madre
      Isola dei Pescatori
      Isola Bella

      Vue incroyable à bord du bateau pour rejoindre les îles.
      Notre île favorite : Isola dei Pescatori, (île des pêcheurs), la plus petite. Un petit méandre de ruelles très étroites, des filets de pêche à chaque coin de rue ; une profondeur que l'on n'a pas ressenti sur les autres îles. Cela vient sûrement du fait que c'est la seule île qui demeure habitée, les autres appartenant à une seule et même famille italienne.

      On a été un peu déçu•e•s de découvrir le côté "privatif" et "tourisme de masse" des îles ; bien qu'on soit conscient•e•s d'avoir la chance d'y être hors saison.
      Mais le charme du clapotis de l'eau, du chant des oiseaux, des canards, des cygnes, des maisons colorées... a tout de même opéré ! On a trouvé des petits spots plus tranquilles loin des restaurants et des boutiques 🌱🌻.

      Et ce soir... on dodo en Suisse ! (On est vraiment pas loin de la frontière italienne 😅).

      PS : joyeux anniversaire à ma maman 🥳.
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    • Day 2

      Day 2

      June 9, 2023 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 21 °C

      Visited the Borromean Islands by small launch - saw the palace on isola Bella . Very grand and gardens very Italian in style . Then went to the next island for lunch . Weather sunny to start with but rained later in afternoon .Read more

    • Day 11

      Wash and wear

      December 20, 2022 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 6 °C

      We were due for a rest day so today was it. Our apartment had a good washing machine but no drier so we utilised every hanger, rail, door knob and antenna to freshen up our gear. We took a quick walk to town for lunch and supplies then crawled back up the hill to flop some more.Read more

    • Day 7

      Lago Maggiore: Island hopping

      July 19, 2022 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 32 °C

      Schon wenn man den Lago Maggiore vom weitem sieht, erstreckt sich ein tolles Panorama, mit einem tiefblauen See und den Bergen im Hintergrund. Beim Ort Stresa bin ich erstmal in den See gesprungen und habe die Straßen erkundet, klein und quirlig. Von dort habe ich direkt eine Bootstour zu den 3 Inseln des Sees gebucht, Isola Madre, Isola Bella (sehr passend, der Name ☺️) und Isola Superiore. Auf den drei Inseln sind tolle Paläste und Gärten, ich genoß jede Insel in vollen Zügen und sprang an diesem heißen Tag endlich Male ins Wasser und ließ mir die Spaghetti Carbonara schmecken (mit einem Vogel 🐦😄).Read more

    • Day 1

      Day 1

      June 8, 2023 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 23 °C

      Arrived after a good journey to Baveno on lake maggiore. Lovely hotel and nice room with a view - walked down to the lakeside and had a nice limoncello spritz - not great for the head at 3 in the afternoon. Very pretty place and quite quiet . Delightful meal tonight in hotel . Lake is beautifulRead more

    • Day 6

      La Dolce Vita

      July 7, 2022 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 24 °C

      Vandaag hebben we een relax dagje, lekker zwemmen in het zwembad, daarna even naar Baveno in een taxi van de camping, om vanuit daar met de boot naar Isola Bella te gaan, op het eiland zijn allemaal kleine winkeltje en kraampjes.
      Daarna wat boodschapjes en toen..... weer in het zwembad. Heerlijk verkoelend bij een temperatuur van 32 graden.
      Nu lekker een biertje en zal ik de camper nog even rechtzetten ( we sliepen scheef ), daarna eten en morgen op naar het volgende avontuur.
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    • Day 19

      Strand Lago Maggiore

      July 11, 2023 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 30 °C

      Plan is om vandaag een dagje naar het strand aan het Lago Maggiore te gaan en wel bij Villa Fedora in Baveno, op aanraden van Anna & Silvio. Wat een prachtige uitzichten hadden we op het meer!!
      Maar alle mensen, we moesten echt van hoog komen😅.... wel een paar honderd meter verschil.. dat wordt een echt barre tocht omhoog naar de B& B vanmiddag!😬 Als onze batterijen het dan maar volhouden!!
      Jan z'n max. vandaag was 55.5 km en de mijne 48.4 km!!! Het ging soms echt heel hard!!
      Maar goed, uiteindelijk zijn we nu op het (kiezel)strand, hebben een plekje in de schaduw, restaurantje en toilet op loopafstand, maar helaas geen strandbedje ⛱️. Nu even lekker niets en we zien het wel straks 😳.
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    • Day 230


      April 17 in Italy ⋅ ☀️ 15 °C

      Heute gab es einen Bummel durch Stresa, eines der 10 schönsten Orte am Lago Maggiore 🇮🇹. Kleine enge Gassen mit Lädchen 😍, darunter viele Geschäfte mit Nudelvarianten, zugehörigen Pestos, Kräutermischungen, Likören, wie der berühmte Limocello und Weinen 🍷🍾 Auch eine Vielzahl Gastronomie mit Pizza 🍕und Pasta 🍝 und natürlich an jeder Ecke eine Eisdiele mit tollen italienischem Eis🍨Read more

    • Day 5

      Day 5

      June 12, 2023 in Italy ⋅ ⛅ 20 °C

      Took local bus to Stresa - nice place - went to top of hotel Palma to see the views from their sky bar . Then took boat to Isola Madre , another Borromean island . Lovely terraced garden and a cool and beautiful villa to look around . Returned to hotel about 3pm and had a good few hours around the pool . Hottest day , lovely blue sky but thunderstorms have arrived again this evening .Read more

    • Day 53

      Beautiful Isola Bella

      May 8, 2023 in Italy

      8/5 Stresa / Isola Bella
      We had no plans for the day, rain was predicted so we thought we’d just have a wander and decide later. Our first surprise was the breakfast room which we found in the new annex (hadn’t realised until then that it existed), it’s lovely and fresh, big windows leading to a tiled terrace with a plant-covered wall. The food was fine, fresh pastries and fruit amongst other things so we were happy enough.

      It was a mild morning so off we went about 100m down the street to the waterfront and walked to the jetty, took advantage of the weather and a hop on/hop off boat ticket to three islands which also gave us entry to the palace/museums on Isola Bella and Isola Madre. The boats go about every half hour from Stresa, hold maybe 25 people and are pretty fast, very easy. There are also bigger ferries that go beyond these islands, plus private speedboats or boats that take around 45 (a bus-load) and are part of organised tours of which there were several on the islands that we kept trying to dodge.

      I’m not going to describe everything we saw, just too much to see and it was all really well worth doing. Best thing is to link good old Wikipedia, do have a quick look at each because it’s not too wordy and gives a good easy history.… Isola Bella was our first stop, quite a scrum getting off the boat pushing through a crowd waiting to get on to go to the next island, first on/first served, limited space on the boats of course. The island is about two thirds palazzo and gardens, we went into the palazzo first and it’s huge with so much bling and more paintings of people and biblical characters, rich furniture and draperies, gold leaf…….. Napoleon visited the island and we saw the room he was given, and the alcove where his bed still stands, lovely views out the window looking across to Isola Madre.

      Then it was down to the lowest level which is room after room of very odd plasterwork also set with stones, apparently a nice cool place for the residents in summer. There’s a big display of papier maché puppets, a very popular means of entertainment. Then upstairs for more bling and beauty, and a room with one side covered in unicorn and lion-related tapestries with other fanciful creatures also featured including monkeys, parrots, people, and a fair amount of blood – must have looked pretty amazing when new, but now faded to blue tones. In one the lion is being gored by the unicorn’s horn, and in another the unicorn is getting attacked.

      We found a decoration that had an akubra on it - see it just to the left of Pete's hat in the photo. Als a hall of mirrors - how many of us can you see?

      At last we got to the gardens, well, they’re huge with a couple of main levels, terraces with roses growing, lots of trees, beautifully manicured shrubs, and of course views to the other islands and across to the shore. The lake is quite narrow so you see both sides, and there are boats coming and going all the time.

      There was a café at one end, and the main exit went by a couple of fairly tasteful souvenir stalls and continued down into the ‘village’ which really consists of a few houses and probably an equal number of cafes and souvenir stalls. I couldn’t resist the cat shawl, there were several colour combinations so it was hard to make a choice.

      It was lunchtime so we chose the Lemon Tree with a partial view of the main ferry jetty and the lake of course, had a tree growing in the middle of it and a very nice owner who asked where we were from then pulled out a greenstone pendant and proudly said his daughter was studying/working in Wanaka, he’d been to New Zealand five times (including Nelson) and had climbed Mt Cook three times! We had a good lunch, lovely surroundings, and the Bellinis were delicious. We weren't tempted to try the New Zealand Sundae for 12 Euro - iccream, kiwifruit and cream.

      Please read the next instalment for the second island.
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