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Sunday, 26 November 2017

Day 16-23 Lake Como - Balaggio, Tremezzo

After settling down for a few days in Menaggio we decided to venture out on  a few short day trips. After a leisurely breakfast in our apartment we took the 2 minute stroll to the Ferry dock. The ferries run regularly everyday. There is a car ferry, a slow people ferry  and a fast catamaran. The printed schedules are almost impossible to decipher and translation is not the issue. There are arrows pointing up, down, sideways. The clerks in the ticket kiosks are mostly polite but usually provide somewhat inaccurate information.

We bought tickets for Bellagio and waited for the Ferry. Once it arrived we found seats and felt the wind in our hair for a pleasant 10 minute ride (Cost round trip for 2 about 18 euros).  Upon arrival we sought out to see if we could find George Clooney and Amal to see of they were free for lunch. Sadly we couldn't find them this trip. We wandered the streets and lane ways up and down steep hills looking at the various shops. Bellagio is basically a place to eat and shop for expensive items. Monica found some nice scarfs. We then found the wine bar that we had enjoyed our last trip. Apartivo Et Al ( is a small place with about 12 tables and 40 wines available to taste. We tried two local reds and two Brunellos along with some amazing pasta., called pizzoccheri.  This is the kind of pasta dish you eat before tilling the fields, buckwheat pasta with potato, cabbage and local cheese.  Later we went back to buy a wine to bring back to the apartment.

Tremazzo- The next morning, after breakfast, we headed out two minutes to find out how much a water taxi costs to go to Tremazzo. While we waited our turn we missed the one car  taxi that left just as we found out that a water taxi would be 70 Euros (compared to 17 for the car).  Luckily the amusement park train pulled in and we paid 10 Euros for the two of us to chug our way to Tremazzo.  When we arrived our memories of our first Lake Como experience quickly came to mind. There was our apartment over the Pharmacy and the walkway full of restaurants.  Of course the restaurant where we had planned to have lunch  (ate there several times last time and was served by a waitress who also served George) was closed on Tuesdays!  Disappointed we wandered a bit and then ventured into a wine store to look around. We recognized the shop and the owner recommended a few alternative dining options.

We settled on the well known, but expensive La Darsena ( which is situated right on the water. We sat with a view of the water and the lovely interior. They allowed us to select some items from the tasting menu - a la carte. We shared a Risotto accompanied by local Lake Perch and a duck breast which had a slight sweet grape sauce. For desert we shared their sampling of all their deserts. We then walked to the Villa Carlotta where we paid to visit their amazing gardens. We had done this on our last visit  and it was certainly worth a return visit. Afterward we boarded the toy train again and travelled back to our apartment in Menaggio.

Dinner at our apartment both these nights. First a veal cutlet and then the second night we had  very special "ball" made from veal, egg, cheese etc. Both were delicious and of course served with fresh salads.

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