On July 6th, we left Arezzo after breakfast, and headed north to the city of Como, on Lago (lake) Como. The city is around six miles from the Swiss border on the southwest corner of the lake. We had spent time in Cernobbio, around four kilometers north of Como on a trip to Italy in March of 1995 (wow, 19 years ago).
It was another hot day in our little car without a good air conditioner. The trip was scheduled to be around four hours. As we headed out of Florence on the way past Bologna, the traffic came to a grinding halt on the Autostrada. Trucks were lined up for five miles in front and in back of us. We found out from a truck driver that a truck had exploded in a mountain tunnel north of Bologna. It took an hour and a half for the highway department to build up a bypass around the tunnel and for us to proceed north again.
We knew we had to bypass Milan and the airport to get on the road to Como. We made one bad turn again, and luckily it only cost us 15 minutes this time. We arrived on the west side of Como at 4:00 pm instead of 2:00. We had an apartment waiting for us through airbnb again. The owner, Riccardo Nucci, met us at the gate to the area, and set us up for a night’s lodging. He was a nice younger man who spoke excellent English after working two years in Sweden. It was a nice place to stay, a few miles out of downtown, and very close to the Autostrada leading to the Swiss border. Breakfast was not included, but the rate was great, $96 (70€) for the night.
We had just enough time to get to the lakefront area of Como, check out some of the scenery, and have a good meal at a Ristorante overlooking the lake. Como is a fairly large town with a population of 85,000. It took a while to drive in and find parking, but it all worked out. It was hot and humid, and the Italian lakes seem to always be somewhat obscured by haze. We noticed that last time we were in the area too.
We stayed in a prettier mountain town the previous trip, and took a drive on a scenic, but scary, mountain road between lake Como and lake Maggiore. The northern lakes of Italy are worth several days of your time if you want some beautiful scenery and plenty of lakeside activities. But, we were on our way to Germany with a short stop in Zug, Switzerland. We didn’t have time to look up George Clooney either!
After supper on the lake, we made our way back to our apartment, and prepared ourselves for the trip to Zug and Hartheim the following day.