Page 21 of Steve Corin Travel Blog Posts

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » San Gimignano June 18th 2012

Day 37 A lazy day today. Wake and do breakfast (yes, food again but when it is included and you get choices of fresh meats, cheeses, freshly picked cherries or apricots it's hard to knock back......). Decide to just visit the township of San Gimignano. Another walled city but this one has lots of towers. These towers differ from others we have seen as they were built to show off rather than for protection from invaders. Originally there were over 20 towers, each taller and grander then the other. There are now only 7 left, but when you look around the area lots of houses have their own little tower (the place we are staying has one). Some shopping and then back for domestic duties and a swim. Meet 2 Dutch couples around the pool and ... read more

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » Florence June 17th 2012

Day 36 Back to Florence again. The road is easier this time, getting to know the vagaries of Italian road works and speed limits.... To the parking plaza again and intot the hop on bus to the city. We are heading towards the Ponte Vecchi (famous bridge of Florence which is enclosed by jewellers shops and has a second level so the Duke could walk from his palace to the church without people knowing he was there). Not as interesting when on the actual bridge but still interesting. Walk the covered arcade to the Uffizzi museum (more paintings and statues). Guess what - a queue that is expected to be 60 to 90 mins. Stand in the line (hotter today so shade is appreciated). The couple in front of us are in animated discussion about the ... read more

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » San Gimignano June 16th 2012

Day 35 Happy birthday Stephanie. We send a Viber message at midnight our time so it gets there early on her birthday. Wake up and go upstairs to the WiFi to Skype home for birthday wishes, etc. Connection good and Stephanie, Charlie and Jessica are on screen. Greeted by Charlie saying in surprise that he could see poppy and nanny. Good to talk and see all of them. We speak for about 20 mins finding out what has been happening at home. Not missing the cold and wet..... Get organized and leave for the day in Florence which is about an hour away. Get good advice from the receptionist at the farm (they are all too happy to help which is great) and get to the Piazelle Michelangelo where we park the car for free. This ... read more

Europe » Italy » Tuscany » San Gimignano June 15th 2012

Day 34 Wake to another beautiful day, sun shining and hardly a cloud in the sky - jealous yet? Chris has a morning hair appointment so I pack bags and the car and get organized. Chris gets back all shorn and much happier with her Italian hair cut. Not a lot of chatter as the hairdresser has no English. Even though she took the Italian phrase book, it was of no real use. They communicated by sign language and the hair cut turned out as requested. We say farewell to our host and one of the English speaking receptionists who had given us some really good advice on the tourist things, etc. Photos of the hotel, with our latest friend and we decide to go the other way to have a look ath thentinynvillage up the ... read more

Europe » Italy » Liguria » Cinque Terre June 14th 2012

Day 33 Wake up to a beautiful day. Down to the harbour to get a boattoo the Cinque Terre. The boat is waiting and we get told that as the seas are still a bit rough the boats can only go to Portevenere and then Monterosso. The other 4 CT stops are out of action. No problem, we still get to see these towns which are hung precariously of the cliffs. A fascinating sight with the terraces going almost vertically up the hills. Not too sure how they tend them or even get up and down the hills anyway..... The boat takes us into the shore as close as it can go and points out the towns, points of interest (in Italian and French only so we get an idea of what is being said). Bit ... read more

Europe » Italy » Liguria » Lerici June 13th 2012

Day 32 This place has a nice feel to it so we decide after breakfast to stay another night, have a lazy day today and do the Cinque Terre tomorrow (with some helpful advice from the hotel staff). Chris has decided she wants a haircut, we need to do the washing again and just laze the day. Find the hairdresser but shut for lunch from 1200 to 1530 (nice lunch breaks here - everything shuts up). Go to the laundromat and get the drill from the lady who then packs up for lunch as well. Walk town and finalist the washing. Lucky we didnt want to do the boat trip to Cinque Terre today, too rough!!! Take thE washing back to the hotel then back down the hill to do the shops and sights. Big fortress ... read more

Europe » Italy » Liguria » Lerici June 12th 2012

Day 31 Wake up in Venice and do breakfast. Watch the passing parade of tourist buses with their organized tour guides waving umbrellas or sticks with flags or ribbons so people don't get lost. Book out and leave the bag at reception to be picked up later. It has rained this morning so decide to carry our rain jackets. Good move as it rains a bit more. Wan to go to Murano to check out the glass blowing factories. Ferry times make it out of the question - too long to get there qnd see anything before we want and have to be off the island. Start to walk around the square and then get propositioned by some cool dude who offers us a free trip to Murano on a water taxi with no hitches (??????). ... read more

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Venice June 11th 2012

Day 30 Off towards Venice after planning our next few weeks traveling. We had decided to get near to Venice today and do a full day tomorrow. How plans can change!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We drive and all of a sudden we are on the canal bridge into Venice. Time is about 1245 so guess what, we are doing Venice today as well as tomorrow. No drama, that is what self drive holidays do to you.... We park the car or Tronchetta, a purpose built island that has a multi level car park and ferry terminal. Very easy to find (thanks Stella) and we are all of a sudden into the Venetian area. Work out that the public transport system of ferries seems a good option so buy a 24 hour ticket - again like the hop on/off bus ... read more

Europe » Italy » Veneto » Verona June 10th 2012

Day 29 Leave Gravedona after a final chat with our Irish friends and decided to head to the hills once again to visit Switzerland one more time. We pack the car and are greeted by the owners (remember the comment about the boss who looked over everything with his hands in his suit pockets) who bade us a fond farewell. Very nice people who help us with our bags and direct us out of the car park. A really nice hotel once again...... Into the alps to visit the cross border towns and a pretty trip up into the hills on quite good roads. Get to the border and stop where Stella tells us which happens to be right against the border gate (walking entry) while the road crossing is below us. The town we visit ... read more

Europe » Italy » Lombardy » Bellagio June 9th 2012

Day 28 Have breakfast and again sit next to our new Irish friends. They are heading off on the ferry to one of the towns on the lake. We have washing to do (yes, even on holidays) so we hated off to do justice to the laundromat in the next town. Find it (nice new establishment with sub titles in English on how to use the machines - very welcome addition). Washing done while it poured rain. Decided to visit Bellagio by ferry (town on the lake that is supposedly vey nice). Go to the information office to get any other bits of advice and ask the girl at the counter. She straight away picks us as Aussies. Turns out she spent 2 years in Oz a while ago and was pining for that time again ... read more

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