Lake Como, Italy
Our first full day in Lake Como, so first stop….the wine bar!
For a coffee and free wi-fi, that is.
This not having Internet at your flat has some benefits after all.
Our plan of attack today is to get an all day ferry pass and see the main villages, so off we go to Tremezzo which is the next town with a ferry stop, and hunt for a car park.
Now, Lake Como’s roads are quite skinny, and every available space between the lake and the mountains is taken by villas, gardens, shops, hotels, restaurants, etc. not much room for cars. To drive, or to park.
Finding an all day park proved quite the challenge, and when we finally found one and headed down to the ferry, the ferry was just pulling away from the pier!
Typical! We seem to be experts at just missing our transport on this trip. And the next ferry left in an hour.
Luckily, just down the road is a beautiful villa and gardens called Villa Carlotta, which we dutifully visited while we waited for the ferry. The Villa is so posh it even has a ferry stop right out side.
The gardens were immaculate and the villa very impressive, so our time was not wasted.
Across the road we went to catch the ferry at the allotted time according to the timetable, ferry arrives, passengers disembark and ferry steams off without the waiting throng. What the….
Let me tell you a thing or two about timetables in Italy. They are a work of fiction and not worth the paper they are printed on. Many trees have dropped for no good reason.
Ten minutes later another ferry arrives, not on the schedule, and we all sprint to get on just in case it turns out to be a mirage. Well it’s hot enough for mirages….have I mentioned the heat?
Bellagio, the most touristy of towns, is our destination and a very pretty spot it is. Not too touristy at all, save for the tourists(!?). All lanes lead up, with plenty of shops and restaurants to while away a couple of hours. We have some success on the shopping front getting some stuff for family, and ourselves.
A bite to eat then on to the town of Varenna which is on the opposite side of the lake. Once again, a beautiful little village with cobblestone lane ways leading every which way, and in our case to the Villa Monastero most famous for its garden which hugs the lake against the rising mountains behind.
The villa was a bit average, lots of 18th century furniture, frescos and works of art….been there, seen that.
The gardens hold a brilliant position along the waterfront but seemed to be a bit run down. We expected pristine, manicured lawns with sculptured structured gardens, but got a lot of weeds, and plants in serious need of some TLC. After Carlotta this garden was pretty ordinary, save for its position.
Then again, what do we know? It’s probably a botanists paradise.
With time against us we headed back to the ferry and back to Tremezzo, where we bumped into Maddy and co at their flash hotel right on the lakes edge. Keen to see how the other half live we checked out their rooms and stayed for a drink on the balcony, looking back across the lake to Belagio and beyond.
The view was stunning, save for Pete’s jocks drying on the table!!
Back to our modest pad, then off to the wine bar to use the wi-fi, which meant we were forced to have a spritz….then another, then back for a home cooked meal of pasta, a wine or two, then out!!
A long day, well spent.