Lake Como: where the Italian upper-crust summer

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Lake Como sits at the foothills of the Alps, about an hour and a half from Milan.  It is well known as a playground for the rich & fabulous, and you will find very few American tourist romping around the small lake towns as they seemed to be filled mostly with Germans, French, Swedish & English.We landed around 8:30 am, after our overnight flight from JFK, and made our way through Milan, north to the one lane-two way traffic, mountain roads that wound around the lake.  Robby, aka Mario Andretti, was loving all the twists & turns driving manual while I was holding on for dear life, praying we didn't end up at the bottom of the lake.We safely arrived at the hotel and decided the goal for the day was to stay awake and re-set our internal clocks.  We toured the busy & touristy town of Bellagio where we were staying, grabbed our first bite of authentic Italian Margherita pizza, a little gelato & took the water taxi across the lake to Menaggio.   Menaggio was less touristy and quiet and we found our selves, with our 3rd espresso of the day, people watching and taking in the scenery.  The mountains surrounding this lake are breath taking... and they are ONLY the foothills of the Alps.  I can't even imagine what the main peaks feel like.After resting a bit, we made our way back to the ferry and over to the town of Verenna.  This little town had a little more life than Menaggio but not overly touristy.  The weather was perfect so we decided to hike up to the ruins we could see from town.  What was supposed to be a 15 min walk up a paved path to the Castello di Vezio turned into over an hour hike through rough terrain and I was wildly overdressed for such a hike.  Finally after our delirious mis-adventure we found the top and realized the hike was well worth the view.  As I said before, the lake's beauty is astounding and these photos will never give it the justice it deserves.  After a brief rest and visit of the tower ruins, we made our way back down to the ferry to go home to Bellagio.

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That night we had dinner at the most romantic, picturesque open air Italian restaurant.  I'm not sure if it was that we'd been up for 24 hours or we were starving after our monster hike or it was simply the best.. but this meal was hands down the best Italian meal I've ever eaten.  The service was incredible, we were given aperitifs and bruschetta complimentary and everything was fresh and delicious.  (ughhh and now all I want for lunch is gnocchi) After a spectacular dinner, we called it an early night in order to make our train to Venice the next day.

Enjoy the rest of the photos... again there were so many taken but here are a few of my favorites to showcase the beauty of Lake Como!

(( I feel like these posts are turning into more of a story telling piece than I originally intended but I guess that's the purpose of a blog? ))