Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Lake Como -- Sept. 8, Day 6

The villages on our itinterary were pleasant no doubt: Tremezzo (with the 17th century Villa Carlotta as its centerpiece), Bellagio (where we had our pasta lunch), and Como (a brief tour of the cathedral followed by frenzied shopping to pick up silk souvenirs ... Como is where there finest Italian silk is weaved into gorgos scarves and bags and other knick knacks.

But the real star of today's trip was Lake Como. So far we've spent all of our time on Lake Maggiore and it's been one of the most beautiful places I've ever seen. Until Lake Como. The mountains are higher, the water is bluer, the villages are ... um ... charming-er, and one of the most fun things we've done was the boat trip.

It was an hour on the water from Bellagio, in the middle of the lake, to Como, at its southern tip. We had wonderful views of the mountains, which rise majestcally on either side of the water and each villa was more attractive than the previous one. Many of them had their own stories.

One was the setting for the final scene of both Star Wars IV: A New Hope and Casino Royale (I must rewatch those scenes when I get home ... I have both DVDs), another once belonged to the late designer Gianni Versace (was was recenly sold to a Russian businessman). And one belongs to Oscar-winning actor George Clooney.

I actually didn't get a very good picture of it, but I tried. I did, however, get good photos of the guest house next door. Robert DeNiro stayed there just the other day.

Speaking of staying, I've got to go! It's Tuesday morning here and I've got to jump on the bus for Lake Orta, our last excursion of the trip. Talk to you soon.