This is about our full day in Varenna
La Dolce Vita
Our first day in sunshine and bright colors of Varenna was the complete opposite of the busy Milan city life. Our guide had recommended that we relax a bit the first few days of the tour, as it would get much more chaotic when we got into cities such as Venice and Florence. We spent the day traveling from botanical gardens to shopping districts on the convenient lake ferries, eating Italian gelato, and picnicking by the lake.
Sometimes it’s the simple things about a trip what one really remembers. Our picnic beside Lake Como in Varenna was one of those moments. We bought bread, cheese, artichoke pesto, and red wine from a local Italian grocery store and we found a sunny spot along the lake to have our little picnic. It was a quite and relaxing lunch with just the two of us and several curious ducks. We ate good food, waded out into the clear lake water, soaked up the sunshine, and laughed at the all the Italian adventures we had already experienced. The sunlight shimmering on the lake surface and the snow-capped mountains in the distance made this a surreal and memorable moment of our time in Varenna.
We visited the botanical gardens Villa Carlotta just outside of Varenna. We walked around the wooded paths and marveled at the flowers and landscaped hedges, the gurgling brook running through the gardens, and the colorful artwork hung in the main building. We met two women in their 80s that were here in Varenna four a couple of weeks as part of their goal to travel the world as much as possible. Their stories were quite an inspiration to us as we are beginning to build our own life travel goals. We ended the day in a mixer with our tour group members and a pleasant time getting to know each of the fascinating individuals with whom we would be spending the next 2 weeks. A few of us dined together at one of the local restaurants where we had the best anchovies of our lives, made of lake fish that were so tender they melted in our mouths.