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Piazzaga donkey
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Torno to Piazzaga: a tale of two donkeys

June 6, 2012 | Italy, Travel | 3 Comments

Getting to Piazzaga is not particularly easy.

I stayed for a few days in this tiny village in the hills above Lake Como, and while the place has several wonderful aspects, ease of accessibility isn’t necessarily one of them.

With a four-wheel drive vehicle and nerves of steel, the drive up the narrow, winding dirt road takes about ten minutes from the lakeside town of Torno. Inches to spare on each side, steep inclines and plenty of blind corners make the ride loads of fun. Especially in the dark.

If it’s a sunny day and you’re headed for what is (in my entirely biased opinion) the best restaurant in Lake Como, though, leave the car behind and find a pair of sturdy shoes. It’s time to go for a walk.

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Lake Como view
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Como without the crowds

June 4, 2012 | Italy, Travel | 6 Comments

Beautiful scenery.

Crowds of well-heeled tourists.

George Clooney.

If you’d asked me about Lake Como a week ago, that’s about all I could have told you.

I knew it was a pretty blue lake in northern Italy, close to the Swiss border with several small towns perched on the surrounding hills. I also knew it could be damn expensive, with the rich and famous being spotted on a regular basis. And, like everyone else, I knew that George Clooney owned a place there, so I presumed we’d probably meet up for a coffee at some point.

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Leopard
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Some of the stupidest things I’ve done while travelling

As you know, I’ve been doing this travelling thing for a while now. I’d like to think that I’ve got better at it over the years. That I’ve learned stuff, y’know? Don’t book too far in advance, for instance. Packing light is a virtue. Imodium is a tradeable currency in Africa. That kind of thing.

Every time I start getting a bit too cocky, however, I manage to find a way of bringing myself back to earth by doing something especially stupid. It’s a good thing though, I reckon – while travel confidence is vital, travel over-confidence is not. When you start to think you know it all, bad things start to happen.

Here’s just a few of many, many examples…

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