Friday, July 27, 2012

Varrena and the Castello di Vezzio

The adventures in Lake Como continue with a boat trip to Varrena and a long hike up the mountain to the Castello di Vezzio. We were alerted to this adventure by Janine, whom you might remember from the Bellagio Water taxi adventure. She warned us in advance that about 1/2 way into the hike, we would start to hate her, but by the time we reached the top and saw the view of Lake Como, we would thank her for the suggestion.

She was right on both counts.

We took a ferry from Bellagio to Varrena - very easy and cheap to do. The trip was about 10-15 minutes. Then a walk along the lake to find the path up the mountain.

We started to wonder if we were going the right direction (signage in Italy can be hit or miss) and then we ran across this.

The path was beautiful but between the huffing and puffing and the sweat in my eyes, I'm not sure I saw too much of it!

Ahhhh, but that view was worth every sore muscle.

You pay to get into the castle grounds, which leads you to this spectacular view. At the top, there is a bit of a bird collection - falcons, owls and others just hanging out. Supposedly, there is also a falcon show, but it was hours after we arrived so we didn't stick around to see it.

The castle is pretty much in ruins, but there is a watch tower still functional and this is the view from the top of it.

We took a different route down with a narrow path covered in straw, which made it quite slippery - we were really glad we didn't find this route for the trip up!

Beautiful view of Varrena from the alternate path.

We rewarded our efforts with some pizza and wine (I had Italian beer actually) at a local cafe right on the water. Then it was back on the ferry to return to our home base, Bellagio.

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