A Travellerspoint blog

The Po Valley

Alps - Milan & Verona

sunny 30 °C
View Alps on kmmk17's travel map.

Given the mountains, it's unsurprising the Alps don't have a decent airport. And with the nearest being in Milan, that's where we headed for the last leg of our trip through the Alps.

Having spent 5 days in Switzerland, we were now heading for a final 2 days in Italy, a much much cheaper country.

We took the train out of Lugano, once again crossing the Melide causeway that splits Lake Lugano into two, passing the road to Campione d'Italia and heading further south to the southernmost points of Switzerland.

Before long we arrived in the border town of Chiasso. Here the train stopped and border guards came to to check the passengers. Annoyingly they also wanted to go through our bags - which were by now full of dirty clothes. The smell was probably enough to believe us, and not long later the train began moving again as we arrived in the town of Como.

From the train we got glimpses of the eponymous lake, and then beyond here we had entered the remarkably flat Po Valley - a real change from the last 4 days of our trip.

Lake Como

Lake Como

Around an hour later we arrived in the second biggest city of Italy - Milan The central station was huge and very grand. We then left into the huge and very hot square fronting the station, before walking the 10 minutes around the corner to our hotel.

Milan Central Station

Milan Central Station

As it was still early afternoon we then headed back out to visit some of the sights in the city, starting with Sforza's Castle - a huge castle complex fronting Sempione Park.

Sforza's Castle

Sforza's Castle

We had a short look around the castle, before making our way on to somewhere much newer - San Siro, the largest stadium in Italy and home to both AC and Inter Milan.

San Siro

San Siro

Our final stop for today was Piazza Gae Aulenti, a modern complex next to Porta Garibaldi station.

After heading back to the hotel we then went for dinner in the restaurant right across the road. It was here that the differences in costs between Italy and Switzerland were the most stark - even in Lugano (which is far from being an Alpine village) meals were at least twice as expensive as they were here.

The following morning we headed back to the station to catch a train headed to Verona. After some confusion with local grannies unable to read their tickets properly, we arrived in the historic city.

Jumping on a bus we arrived in the centre of the city, outside the grand and well preserved Arena that built almost 2,000 years ago, and is still used to this day.

Verona Arena

Verona Arena

We then wandered through the fancy city streets, before arriving at the exceptionally busy courtyard outside the Juliet Balcony.

Juliet's Balcony

Juliet's Balcony

Despite Romeo & Juliet being fiction, and debate as to whether Shakespeare had ever even visited Verona, the balcony on this old house has been designated as the balcony from the story.

It took ages to get into the courtyard, but we did eventually manage to get inside and a have quick moment before the next Insta model had her photoshoot on the balcony and ruin everyone's photos.

We then headed to the Market Square before a walk past some beautiful buildings on the way to the river.

Piazza dei Signori

Piazza dei Signori

On the walk back we grabbed some Gelato, viewed some of the pretty bridges over the river, before jumping on a bus to take us back to the station.

Ponte di Castelvecchio

Ponte di Castelvecchio

At the station, we grabbed tickets for the next train back to Milan. The route took us close to Lake Garda, and we had lovely views of the fort at Peschiera del Garda.

Peschiera del Garda

Peschiera del Garda

The following day was our last on the trip. With our flight not until early evening, we had time for a few last sights - so after check out we headed right into the city centre, arriving outside the city's most famous sight, the Duomo.

Duomo

Duomo

We then headed right around the corner to the Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II, a beautiful old fashioned shopping centre, before heading back to the cathedral and grabbing one last Gelato.

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II

We had now seen everything on our trip, and so headed back to our hotel to grab our bags and make our way to the airport.

It had been a nice trip, just a real shame the weather had not been on our side and not allowed us to fully enjoy the north side of the Alps!

Tips

Posted by kmmk17 16:45 Archived in Italy Tagged history lake bridge city cathedral castle roman stadium alps shakespere

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