Base camp at Marck & Chiara’s, Italy. Weeks 20&21 02.01.18 – 15.01.18

  • After our adventures in the mountains, we found ourselves back at Marck and Chiara’s where we actually ended up spending another two weeks with them! We can’t thank them enough for their hospitality, Italian meals, Italian lessons and not forgetting plenty of good memories!! Love you guys and see you in May for Bugaloo!

(www.bugaloo.it – Volkswagen show which Marck and Chiara run, we went in 2017 and are hoping to make it a tradition every year!)

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Here are a few things we got up too!

Shower tube build

Chiara had seen a photo which inspired an idea for a potential shower for both of our T3’s! Using some waterpipe and a few taps in a couple of days both Marck and Tris had come up with Mk 1 of the pipe shower…!

 

 

Milan & Six Balls Band night 6.01.18

The four of us made our way in Marck’s car towards Milan, stopping for a cheeky Maccy’s on the way. Parked up and got the metro into the centre where we wandered around the “fashionable” city.

 

 

Many grand buildings to admire, especially the Duomo di Milano – one of the world’s largest cathedrals. Stunning gothic architecture!

 

 

Also took a walk through the famous Galleria Vittorio Emanuele shopping mall with an impressive glass ceiling and intricate architectural details.

 

 

A bottle of Prosecco went down nicely whilst we watched the world go by in Piazza del Duomo.

 

 

Later on in the evening, back at Marck and Chiaras, Alby arrived and we all had dinner together before heading to Novara to see the “Six Balls” band that featured at Bugaloo last year. Great night of dancing and too many Tennents!

 

 

Visiting Vigevano and Vercelli 9.01.18

Both Marck and Chiara were back at work so we decided to do a bit of exploring for ourselves. The weather wasn’t great but we made the most of it! We visited Vigevano first, found somewhere free to park and took a stroll towards the centre. Visited Castello Sforzesco on the way…

 

 

We then walked through the arcade into Piazza Ducale – a beautiful square with faded artwork above the arcades and a mosaic-like tiled floor.

 

 

We then made our way to Vercelli where unfortunately the rain just didn’t give up. Found somewhere to park where we had Taralini (little savoury Italian biscuits which we’ve eaten far too many of) with cheese and salami. We decided to take a drive-by tour instead but managed to get a few pictures of the van in front of Basilica di Sant’Andrea.

 

 

Got back early evening and enjoyed a tasty Risotto that Chiara had made!

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Casale Monferrato 10.01.18

After a lazy morning, we headed on the 494 to Casale Monferrato. A pretty little town full of hidden old buildings, alleyways to explore as well as a castle with a moat!

 

 

Had a walk inside the cathedral after walking across Piazza Mazzini.

 

 

Lake Viverone 11.01.18

Beautiful sunny day – perfect for a trip to the lake! After a good hour or so drive, we arrived at Lake Viverone where we managed to find a carpark right next to the water. Awesome setting for lunch – the reflections of the mountains on the water were stunning and the sun felt so warm (we hadn’t felt that kind of warmth in a while!!) Spent the afternoon taking a walk along the lake.

 

 

We then took a really cool road back towards Marck & Chiara’s – the 419 passed two smaller lakes, had a few hairpin bends and there was an awesome view out of the window of the mountains and surrounding area.

Turin 13.01.18

The weekend came back round meaning both Marck and Chiara had some time off. Kicked off the weekend on Friday night by visiting a Pizzeria!

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The following day we visited Turin, the weather once again was beautiful! Visited the Superga Basilica where the view was stunning.

 

 

We then visited ‘Borgo medievale’ – well worth visiting if you find yourself in Turin! Situated in Parco del Valentino, you can’t miss the awesome medieval castle and village, the buildings are incredible! Small medieval themed craft and food shops line the main walkway through before coming to a clearing where an old dilapidated wall still stands.

 

 

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Later on, hot chocolate in hand, we walked through Valentino park back towards the car. We made our way back, stopping off at a restaurant to pick up takeaway “Fritto Misto” – an array of fried seafood. Tasted so, so good!

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Last day 15.01.18

Unfortunately, we realised our year away (and MOT) was soon to come to an end and with plans to see some of France before we got the ferry home, we had to make a move. Spent our last day having a bit of a sort out, ready to get back on the road towards the Italian coastline where we then planned to move west into France!

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