Page 6 of coasties Travel Blog Posts


Europe » Liechtenstein » Vaduz May 8th 2011

Leaving early we headed off to the alps again this time via the Grimselpass and Furkapass if they are open, the destination is Liechtenstein all going well. What a stunning drive we had, firstly through the lower hills and finally winding up through Grimselpass for a brief stop and to admire the awesome view. Onwards and ever upwards we headed up the Furkapass which was open today for the first time this year. This and many of the passes in the alps are closed during the winter as they are very dangerous, the snow in places where we drove was over 4 meters high at the edges of the road where they had cut a way through, very cool. There are hotels dotted right through the area which are sponsored by the Swiss Military in exchange ... read more
Grimselpass
Grimselpass
Furkapass

Europe » Switzerland » South-West » Interlaken May 7th 2011

Heading off again more south and towards the French border we decided to take a side trip up to the Grand St Bernard Tunnel and pass to have a look. Guess what, yep that’s right the bloody pass was closed. Switzerland is closed. We decided not to go through the tunnel as the toll was 37e each way and anyway all you see is the inside of another tunnel. Considering the pass was closed we had no choice, we went up anyway, to hell with the Swiss officials and there crappy closed signs. To be fair we only made it about 5 kms up the pass road before it became obvious why it was closed, see the photo. The road was blocked by ice and snow about 3m high we were at about 2200m. Returning down ... read more
Gd St Bernard Snow Melt
Gd St Bernard Wall Of Snow
Somewhere In Switzerland

Europe » Switzerland » South-West » Sion May 7th 2011

Before we start today, a note for one of our younger readers: please be advised that the blog is a record of the trip and locations and not about individual people and what they did on a day to day basis! Rising early Bree, Pam and I prepared to catch the train up to Zermatt and then the cable car to the top of the mountain to view the Matterhorn. After a 15 minute walk to the train station and paying the 39e return fares for the three of us it was off to Zermatt. Zermatt is a ski village for the rich and famous I suspect as it is expensive to get there and accommodation appears to be pricey as well. Paying the 225e for the three of us to get up the mountain was ... read more
Skiing Mt Breithorn
Matterhorn Glacier Paradise - Ice Cave
Matterhorn Glacier Paradise - Ice Carving

Europe » Switzerland » South-West » Tasch May 6th 2011

Leaving the shores of Maggiore to head up towards Simplon Pass, a minor road up into Switzerland that avoids the main Autostrade we came across some of the most stunning scenery we have yet seen on this trip, my words can not convey just how magnificent this part of Italy and Switzerland really is. Mountain vistas and green valleys are right out of travel brochures with little stone huts set amongst green fields with bright yellow flowers covering them, Mountain Rivers tumbling down granite cliff faces and roads that wind along the edge of cliffs, truly outstanding, please look at some of Pam’s pics to get some idea what is up here. We left Italy for the first time today but not the last, the shape of Switzerland puts a long narrow section down into Italy ... read more
Valle Vigezzo
Sanctuaire Notre Dame du Sang
Sanctuaire Notre Dame du Sang

Europe » Italy » Lombardy » Lake Maggiore May 5th 2011

Leaving late, around 2.30 as Pam was trying to catch up on work we headed off towards lake Maggiore, again via the back roads, the roads around the lakes are very very narrow with many places where two cars cant pass and it is a matter of getting through when you can. Winding down lake Como we were looking for a road over the mountains, through Switzerland then over to Lake Maggiore. Getting through Lugano was a nightmare at 5.00 but we finally got some clear road towards Luino, we passed the Swiss border where we were stopped and sent onto a weighbridge. This little Swiss/Italian man then proceeded to ask us if we wanted a 3 way on the autobahn, Pam and I cracked up, we had no idea what this border guard wanted, we ... read more
Lake Maggiore Sunset
Lake Maggiore Sunset
Lake Maggiore Sunset

Europe » Italy » Lombardy » Lake Como May 5th 2011

Leaving our lovely little spot it was time for a serious drive over another mountain pass as a short cut to Lake Como. Winding up a narrow road for about 45 minutes we found the turn off and headed up the seemingly good large yellow road. Winding up higher and higher we got above the snow line and found the bob sled run, just around the corner there was sign that said CLOSED, bugger, the gate was not down so we though that maybe they had just forgotten to take the closed sign down. Deciding to have lunch and think about it and 4 wheel drive came down so I flagged em down, they told me in no uncertain terms that yes the road was in fact closed and looked at me as though I was ... read more
On The Road To Passo di Croce Domini
On The Road To Passo di Croce Domini
Lake Como

Europe » Italy » Lombardy » Idro May 5th 2011

Just a short hop 45kms and three hours down the road and over a lovely mountain pass road full of rivers and waterfalls we came to a lovely little lake called Idro, stopping for a late lunch alongside the lake we spotted a nice little spot down by the lake big enough for the camper, we decided to stop early for the day and kick back a little. This spot was down a little road and right on the edge of the lake with stunning snow capped mountain views, just perfect. Kicking back for a snooze while Pam updated the blog and did some work on her pics and Bree caught up on some home work. It rained a little later in the day but it was a great spot for the night. Cuckoos were everywhere ... read more
Lake Idro
Lake Idro
Village Lake Idro

Europe » Italy » Lombardy » Lake Garda May 5th 2011

Deciding we had seen enough canals and churches it was off to the Northern Lakes district to visits the lakes and mountains of northern Italy. Leaving around 2pm as Pam had work to do we used the Autostrade again for a while to cover some miles, leaving the strada part way along at Ala we stooged across the top of the lake winding to a town called Riva Del Garde, it was manic. There was some push bike competition in town and being Saturday afternoon there were bikes for Africa. It was really mental and finding a free place to park for the night was not going to happen. Deciding on a camp ground we found a seemingly lovely spot called camping Bella Vista, not as the name suggests to be sure. It was to be ... read more
On The Way To Lake Garda
On The Way To Lake Garda
On The Way To Lake Garda

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice May 5th 2011

Returning to Venice it was time to work out the canal and local water ferry service to try and get to the Islands of Murano and Burano not far away but forever when trying to work out the ferry service, there are about 10 different lines going to 10 different places and which one to catch was starting be a worry. Firstly it was trip up the grand canal to see all the palaces lining both banks, this was an education watching all the gondolas, ferries, freight boats and water taxis working the canals at the same time, it was a bit like a dance really. Arriving back at St Marks Square ferry terminal we caught the next boat out to Murano and after a 40 minute trip we arrived on the little island. Know mainly ... read more
Venice In B&W
Gondola
Venice

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice May 1st 2011

Pam has been looking forward to visiting Venice for the whole trip and now the time is here, the ferry was right on time and we left at 10am arriving in Venice at 10.20. Embarking the ferry we were confronted with a choice, left or right, perusing the map I decided that the right was the way to go, wrong it was left, but I must say it was an easy mistake to make, not a good start to one of the hardest cities to navigate around in the world. There are no cars, buses. Trains in Venice, it is by walking, water taxi or the water buses, which are slow but get you there. We used the old fashioned method of walking and once we had the map figured we were off, getting lost in ... read more
Grand Canal Venice
Venice
Rialto Bridge




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