Travelled: 147 kms from Peschiera del Garda to Milan. Region of Lombardy, Italy.
Stayed: Bollate, free car-park sosta, with sevices. N45.54704, E09.11368
Budget: 117 days @ €91 per day.
We enjoyed our second quiet evening at Peschiera del Garda. Taking the opportunity to update the apps on our iPads and iPhones as well as download IOS12. Pam has been busy learning new gestures and giving me some new ones as well.
Lake Garda is beautiful, if you have the opportunity give yourself at least 2-3 days. For us time continues to move ahead rapidly now it seems. So we say goodbye to our odd neighbour and his cat on a string and hit the road.
We spot this lovely railway bridge as we leave town.
Just around the corner a cheap service station that also has GPL (LPG) so we pull in to fill up with both. ‘No GPL for camper-cars’ the attendant tells us. We have heard rumours that GPL for pump-in systems (like ours) was difficult it Italy and after almost 3 months and 4-5 re-fills, we finally get a knock back. Obviously that servo does not get our business. We have enough gas to get us back to the UK in any case, but we like to keep topped up.
From Brescia to Bergamo then on to Monza, there is industry, then more industry. For more than 100 klm. No we don’t know what that is either ?
So we make our way to Bollate, an outer suburb of Milan. There is a free car-park with services here. Milan doesn’t have many motorhome options, so we are happy to find another motorhome here.
It’s a good 7-800m from our sosta to Bollate railway station, but soon enough we are on the train (€2.80pp return) to Milan’s Cadorna Station.
The Lonely Planet recommend using Milan’s Tram #1 as a good starting point to self explore Milan. Luckily enough there is a #1 tram stop across the road from the station. Tickets for the tram (€1.50pp) last for 75 minutes although ours lasted considerably longer.
On the Piazza Sempione we find the Arco della Pace.
Across the park we can see the Castello Sforzesco, I can type it, but not pronounce it.
More tram action, better than walking.
Our next stop is Milan’s Duomo. Much of its ornate exterior was only completed last century. It boasts 135 spires and 3,200 statues interwoven through its exterior. I should add the exterior is in the final throws of a €25,000,000 renovation.
Also on the Piazza Duomo, this magnificent pigeon coop. There are so many people milling about this piazza, thousands is seems. We are somewhat amazed at how many people are visiting Milan today. It appears everyone has brought a pigeon with them.
We queue for 30 minutes to purchase our tickets (€3pp) to the Duomo, then wait a further 15 minutes in the queue to the security barrier to actually enter.
Inside the Duomo, looking forward from the entrance along the naive to the apse. It is a cavernous space, we thought very dark and dimly lit.
The vaulted ceilings along either aisle set in a complex carved pattern.
A closer look at the altar itself. There are some huge stained glass windows lining the semi-circular apse, but it’s difficult to get any sort of photo.
Another symbol from the glory days…
We walk across to the Basilica di Santa Maria dell Grazie. Leonardo da Vinci’s ‘the last supper’ is on display here. We have tried getting tickets on line a couple of times over the past few weeks. The list price for a basic entry is €7.50 but google constaintly refers us to third party sites wanting €65-70. I would need to see Leonardo actually putting brush to wall for that much money.
The Basilica has lots of other frescos, but not Leonardo’s
The shadows are getting longer and it’s Negroni time. We chill out in a little cafe and watch the old trams rumble past. Milan is the home of the Negroni and Pam is now Negroni addicted.
Thankfully it’s only one block back to Cadorna Station and we are soon on the rattler back to Bollate. Another couple of old motorhomes have joined us in the carpark. Dinner is light and simple, translation being, it’s been a long day and we cannot be bothered. Originally we thought we may do a second day in Milan, but as we have a drink and debrief, maybe one day will do us.