Tuscany and the Italian riviera
05.06.2017 - 14.06.2017
Maybe a few too many photos here, but what a fabulous experience, Ove the Italian coastline.5.6.2017
We headed off on the train to Como where we picked up the hire car, we started off to Pisa, after getting bamboozled by the GPS a few times we finally arrived at our hotel in Pisa, had a wonderful fun dinner at the hotel, next morning we trooped off to find the leaning tower, wow it is just spectacular, I didnt realise it is behind a huge old stone wall with several equally gorgeous buildings. There was a huge amount of people gathered there taking photos just like us, I must admit with the latest terrorist attacks you do feel a little nervous.
After leaving beautiful Pisa behind we headed to our next destination in Tuscany, I had found a Villa/hotel for us to stay at for one night, we loved it there so much that we stayed for three nights, visiting the Chianti wine region, wine tasting (of course), visited an old castle and ate pizza in a mountain village, the four of us shared the pizza which was 2ft in circumference and bloody delicious.
Toured around Tuscany, by far our favourite place, so beautiful and peaceful, the Villa Mucellena where we stayed was fantastic and the staff so friendly, when they found out it was Lindesay's birthday they said we had to stay and they would give him surprises.
Happy birthday my darling L, (by the way, he drove the hire car for the whole 10 days and did an amazing job) we went to beautiful Florence today, it was a bit of a dream of mine to go there and we were not disappointed, the Ponte Vecchio is just so old, very packed with tourist enjoying its unique beauty, upon returning to the Villa and freshening up for dinner, Massimo started the festivities by introducing us to two other guests who were from Bavaria and were good fun company to make a party. The drinks started to flow, some we paid for but anything Massimo brought out for us to try were a gift put on by the owner who we called the godfather, he wants to marry my sister Barbara haha. A beautiful huge light panna cotta was the bday cake surprise made by the chef, if you are thinking of going to Italy we thoroughly recommend this amazing place and people.
On the way to Portofino we stopped at a little seaside town for lunch and over looked the hundreds of umbrellas all lined up and all occupied. We spent three days in a private villa in Rapallo, visiting Portofino harbour which has stunning views and super wealthy people in luxury boats every where. We went by boat to a little area known as San Fruittiosso, there is an ancient abbey there and very popular swimming area, we had lunch here and had a toast to my mum as it was 7 years since she passed away, cheers mum. We also drove along the coast being the Italian Riviera.
After leaving our lovely villa we headed to lake Como, again our accommodation was stunning and very old right on the lake, we only had one night here, found a very quant restaurant for dinner, all the tables were under the canopy of a huge tree. The next morning we drove down into Como city handed back our Audi then caught the train to Lugano.
Arrived by train in Lugano, dragged our luggage to our hotel up a hill (phew), the rooms we had were in different buildings but opposite each other so we could do sign language across the square. We caught a funicular (like a train/tram) down to the main piazza for lunch, then bar hopped for a little while before dinner over looking the lake and people watching was very interesting. The view from our room at night was spectacular looking up the mountain which was lit up.
Our trip back to Switzerland was on the Bernina express train, which meanders through tunnels, over via ducts and many many scary wriggly tracks, and the most beautiful scenery, so many little villages set in valleys all through the mountains, the snow is mostly melted now but still some to be seen, it was one of the high lights so far.