We left Stigliano with the intention of heading north to lake Garda. I had always wanted to go and visit the Italian lakes and mountains, but as we read our guide book on the way, it painted a picture of crowds, over development and disappointment. We stopped on the way for lunch and decided that we didn’t want to risk disappointment and instead turned right. This led us to Fusina, a small town a short ferry trip away from Venice. We didn’t want disappointment to interfere with this break. DSC01333We got to the campsite in time to head over to Venice for the evening and it was beautiful. The streets were sunlit and people we’re beaming. The water was glistening as we had a quick look around to get our bearings ready for a full days visit the next day. We did go back and went on ferries down the canal grande (twice), we visited Piazza San Marco and went into the Basilica, we looked at the gondolas but didn’t go on – frightened by the possible rip off, we visited the island of Murano and had a lovely day in the sun. No disappointment to be had here. I even had the opportunity to have my photo taken with a  couple of local police officers. (Not sure if their jackets or my hair are more high vis!) DSC01370   DSC01384It was then time to head north back into France, so off we went driving towards Milan and then towards Turin before heading into the Alps again to pass back into France. This time we went throughout the Mont Blanc tunnel, so up we went into the Alps above the snow line again before whisking through the tunnel and coming out in Chamonix. Quite beautiful, although more of those terrifying roads that I’ve mentioned before. What is it about the French and Italians building aerial roads which seem to be so high in the air, completely unattached to anything other than very long legs? My experience with Lego as a child and parent taught me that these were just not safe?? Gives me the heebegeebies just thinking about them. We then headed around Geneva to a pretty village near Chalon-sur-Saone, and a lovely camp site that unfortunately wasn’t open for another two days! (Curses to our campsite book, maybe we should have splashed out on the 2014 edition?) Anyway we rough camped for one night and then moved on the next day, bolstered by a visit to a boulangerie and made our way to Les Andeleys, our final stop before we head home. IMG_0358Fortunately this camp site was open and was alongside the River Seine. Our pitch gave us the most magnificent views over the river and the bridge. We spent many happy times watching a range of boats passing up and down, varying from huge container ships to river cruisers and small private boats. Our days here we’re spent enjoying short but hilly walks, visiting Claude Monet’s house and garden (incidentally worth a visit for the garden on its own. I can see why he was so inspired) and just enjoying the sun and water, with a regular supply of fresh bakery produce to supplement us. In the evenings we’d shut ourselves in the camper, warm and cosy, safe from the midges that clearly loved the combination of water and countryside, and watch the bats flying round hopefully eating those midges up. DSC01422DSC01412             Over three weeks spent in Europe and time to go and see how home is doing, so off we went to get our ferry from Caen. Just time for a nice meal in the town first, to savour those French chef skills.


Boats and bats


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