Friday, September 04, 2009

Paradise On Earth

After the stress and worry yesterday, we needed a good day today and we got it in spades as we went to Lake Como, the place I'd wanted to visit ever since seeing photos of it years ago.

We left the opulance of our hotel in Piacenza and after I managed to get us going the wrong way (South and not North) on the same autostrada we had the tyre blowout on yesterday thus incurring 3.60 euros in extra tolls to get back North again, we made up the time and arrived without further incident in Como around noon.

We had another traditional Italian meal at a McDonalds (have they the monopoly in Italy ??) and then walked to the lakeside. It was a bit overcast and I was gutted as of all the locations where I wanted blue skies, this was it.

We didn't stay long and decided to head on up the lake road to Bellagio, a town I only knew about when I visited it's namesake casino in Las Vegas some years ago. A strange link I know but hey, it got me here. As we went up the incredibly narrow winding road to Bellagio, God heard my pleas and the clouds lifted and out came the sun again and the temps went up about 15 degrees.

It was a startling transformation and suddenly the lake became a magical, wonderful, beautiful place and I could understand why George Clooney has a place here. I would !

As we went north to the town, with awesome views on both sides, we were looking out for places to stay, not knowing if any would be available and if so, how much they would cost in this very ritzy location. We saw a sign for a 3 star hotel off to the side of the road, overlooking the lake so we turned around and came back to it as you just cannot slam on the brakes on this road as there is always someone right on your ass, so to speak.

In fact the drivers toot their horns if they think you are going too slowly and expect you to pull over to let them pass - several were very annoyed with us for not doing so and gave us strange gestures as they passed us at totally ridiculous places on the road.

So back to the hotel. We were told we could have 2 joining rooms for the night for 'only' 104 euros so we said yes immediately. We went up to see the rooms and both had their shades down so we didn't know if we had a view at all or if it was a view of the road or the lake or the hotel dustbins. We opened the shades with some excitement and once our eyes had become accustomed to the sunlight streaming in, this is the view that greeted us from our balcony........

Please click on the photo for a better look.

We were all gobsmacked and a few OMG's were expressed although mine was the only one with any merit as I was the only one of us who actually believes in Himself. What a view and at the best rate since we left Rome so all in all, a good result. This is another composite photo and I've rushed to get it merged and up on here so forgive it's appearance but it hopefully gives the idea what we see out the window and will wake up to tomorrow......without even getting out of bed. For once I won't mind sleeping with the curtains open ! Can't wait for sunrise. Well ok maybe not sunrise but 8am should be just fine.

We left the hotel and drove on up to Bellagio for the evening and it was so odd to drive into the small town for the first time and yet I felt I'd been there before as I'd checked it out on Google Street View many times from home. It was better seeing it in person and we had a lovely evening walking around the town and having a meal outside on the edge of the lake. We checked out the boat rides and may return to Bellagio tomorrow to get out onto the lake for a while.

We wanted to add another night here in this hotel, the Hotel Ristorante (G.L.A.V.J.C.) but they were booked up for the weekend and that's not a surprise. If you look at the only photo on the site, our rooms are two in from the right on the 2nd floor down and so overlooking the darker roof. Of course we also overlook the lake which is the main thing.

The hotel doesn't have wi-fi but I'm pinching it from someone called Alice so thank you very much for not securing your router, Alice. Much appreciated.

Right, time for bed but here are two photos of a part of Bellagio, the same view taken in the late afternoon and then again at night.

Ciao for now.


Yorkshire Pudding said...

I wonder where you will end up on Saturday night?

Debby said...

Just gorgeous! know.....

rhymeswithplague said...

Gorgeous views! I am vicariously enjoying them through you and your trusty camera. Thank you.

Jennyta said...

That sounds like a much better day. Italian drivers hoot at you for anything at all!

Silverback said...

I'll take your question at face value, YP, and we've no idea at all where we'll end up as we had no plans after Lake Como...maybe cross to Venice and go down the Adriatic coast and back across through our beloved Tuscany to Rome for Friday.

Thanks for the comment, Bob. The camera doesn't do the views justice I'm afraid but I've taken 1200 photos so at least they will jog my memory over the coming years.

Debby, I know.

We've been pretty much 'toot' free this trip, Jenny, but on these really narrow lake roads, those who want past, REALLY want past and don't seem to care where and when they pass you so it's a case of risking your wing mirrors to try and give them room to do so on a safe bit of road or just let them pass you on a blind bend on the crest of a hill and pray for us all !

jay said...

So ... where are the fountains, then? LOL!

Seriously, it sounds beautiful! I'm glad you found a good hotel - and itsn't that a great view? Wow.

Going to check out the hotel link now.

ruth said...

As always your fantastic photos capture the fabulous views and scenery in spectacular fashion. There aren't enough superlatives to describe what you must be experiencing. When you get back I look forward to seeing your 1200 photos and no doubt a similar number from Daffers. Meantime, thank you for sharing them here (and on Twitter)

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