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Travelogue : Lake Como, Maranello, Milan

Discussion in 'Travelogues & Experiences' started by amogh, Sep 23, 2012.

  1. amogh

    amogh Staff Member Janitor

    Grande Punto 1.3
    This is more of a "photologue" than a travelogue. We experienced and saw a lot during this trip which would be impossible to put in words. However I would be more than happy to answer your questions / queries if you have any.

    We (my wife & I) visited Italy in the first week of September. The areas that we visited were Lake Como (5 days), Maranello (2 days) and Milan (2 days).

    The planning stage..
    We had started planning for this trip well in advance (Feb-March) and were looking for hotel reviews, places to visit etc. Thanks to wonderful websites like Trip Advisor our job became extremely easily. We chose September because we did not want to get caught in the soaring temperatures of the “European Summer”. Things have been getting very hot (and I don’t mean this in a good way!) in Europe during the summer and we thought September should be a good option instead of visiting in May, June.

    The Schengen Visa
    After all the flight, hotel and car rental bookings were done, it was time to apply for Italian Visa. The hotel booking confirmations have to be a part of the visa application package and a couple of hotels where we had booked & confirmed sent us an “Invitation Letter” in Italian. The visa application consisted of the following:
    1. Visa application form with all the necessary details filled in
    2. A covering letter addressed to the Consular General. The covering letter should have the following details:
      • Intention of travel (tourism, visiting family, work etc)
      • Passport details of the applicant
      • Detailed Itinerary – Flight details, Hotel details
    3. Copy of Flight Tickets (in my case : Mumbai-Milan-Mumbai)
    4. Copy of reservation confirmation for all the hotels
    5. Copy of last three years income tax returns
    6. Copy of last six months bank statement of the person who is going to bear the expenses
    7. Copy of last three months credit card statement (the credit card should preferably have a high credit limit)
    8. Copy of Schengen Mediclaim Policy (I got mine from here : The Schengen travel insurance | AXA Schengen)
    9. Photocopy of Marriage Certificate (since I was traveling with my wife)
    10. Letter to Consular General of Italy stating that I was going to take care of my wife’s expenses
    My wife had to submit all the above documents (my bank and credit card statements become a part of her application too). Only difference being for Pt.10 above she had to write a letter stating that her husband is taking care of her expenses.
    The reasons I chose the AXA-Schengen for getting the insurance (even though they were more expensive than Indian companies: Tata AIG, Bajaj Allianz etc) were:
    1. The insurance policy is specifically designed for Schengen Travel
    2. The under writing company is AXA Europe
    3. In case the visa application gets rejected, they refund you the premium
    4. They completely met all the requirements as stated by the Italian Consulate. The terms and language used by Indian companies were open to interpretation and not very clear.
    The visa processing took no time at all. We submitted the application on Friday and we had the passports with the visa stamped on Monday. Note that we did not have to go to the consulate for submitting the application. Our travel agent took care of the processing for us.

    Since we were going to hire a car getting a GPS was necessary.I had bought a Garmin Nuvi 350 (https://buy.garmin.com/shop/shop.do?pID=31655&ra=true) when I was in US and I thought of checking with Garmin if the device supports maps and navigation for Italy. After confirming with Garmin that I can load Italy maps on the device I purchased them from the Garmin web store. The cost of the maps was US$ 70 (one time purchase – no updates) and this was going to work out WAY cheaper than getting a GPS on rent from the rental agency. (The GPS rental rates were EUR 30 per day!!). However I did have to get a SD-Card to load the maps on the GPS. The internal memory of the GPS was just 2 GB and it was already consumed by the US, Canada Maps.

    Leg 1: Mumbai-Frankfurt-Milan-Tremezzo
    Our tickets were booked on Lufthansa and the flight route was Mumbai-Frankfurt-Milan (Malpensa Airport). The journey was uneventful. No noisy tourists, screaming & crying children etc. However the in-flight entertainment was pretty sad. In fact, there was no entertainment. The aircraft was an old Boeing 747-400 which did not have individual screens. My wife was not expecting this “Even Kingfisher Airlines offers individual screens on domestic flights” she says. “That’s probably the reason why they are going bankrupt” I respond. However the food was excellent and the air hostess’s (though not very pretty) were friendly and accommodating.
    Since our port of entry in the EU was Frankfurt we went through passport control / immigration at Frankfurt and proceeded to our next flight which was going to take us to Milan. Frankfurt-Milan is a short flight (about 55 minutes of flying time) BUT the sights that you get to see during the flight are simply amazing. You are flying southwards and the flight path takes you over Switzerland before beginning it’s decent to land into Milan. The sight of snow-capped Alps and the vast Lake Como are breath-taking. We got our first view of Lake Como from the aircraft and we instantly realised that it was going to be an awesome experience.

    View of the Alps while apporaching Milan

    First view of Lake Como

    Welcome to Milan !!

    After we landed in Milan, our first job was to get the rental car and proceed to Tremezzo. The car rental was with Thrifty. Thrifty’s car rental partner in Italy is Auto Europa (not the Skoda dealer in Pune!) and we had to go Auto Europa’s counter to get the car keys. After an awfully long wait and some haggling about the insurance that was on the car we got the car keys and proceeded towards the parking lot. We were given a Peugeot 308 SW. We were already a couple of hours behind schedule and I was in no mood to take a picture of the car. We dumped our luggage in the car and proceeded towards Tremezzo.

    The ultra slow car rental desk at Malpensa

    Milan to Tremezzo was a close to 100 kms drive and from the directions it seemed like it was going to be a scenic drive. Here is how it looked when I had searched on Google Maps
    Milan to Tremezzo

    The drive was beautiful and enjoyable. I will let the pictures do the talking now
    About to hit the highway!
    Well paved scenic road - What more can I ask for?
    About time I saw one!!

    Ain't it beautiful?



    16.JPG ''







    Around Lake Como
    We spent 5 nights around Lake Como and stayed at Hotel La Perla in Tremezzo. (Lake Como Hotels - Tremezzo Hotels - Hotel La Perla - Lake Como Hotels | Hotel La Perla) The location of the hotel was excellent with a direct view of the lake from the room balcony. However that is not what made this hotel different. The people who run this hotel are probably the friendliest hotel staff I have seen so far. The hotel is run by a family and the sheer enthusiasm and excitement they have is contagious. Ever smiling, always willing to help, answer questions. There wasn’t a single moment where they gave us a chance to complain. 5 Stars to the hotel. Much recommended.
    We reached our hotel late afternoon / early evening. By the time we got fresh and set out it was around 6 pm. I was hungry and wanted to eat something (I rarely eat during flight. I have only water and juice). Since the hotel did not have a full-fledged restaurant we asked their recommendation for an eating joint. The hotel recommended this one restaurant that was right by the lake side. Went there, ordered some nice pizza, pasta and wine and just relaxed. It was awesome!!

    A beautiful restaurant right by the lake. Perfect for a quiet evening meal!

    Our hotel




    View from the room

  2. amogh

    amogh Staff Member Janitor

    Grande Punto 1.3
    A bit about Lake Como
    I am not going to spend time writing on Lake Como. There are plenty of websites that offer a good amount of information and insight about the place. The Wikipedia page of Lake Como beautifully captures the highlights of the place: Lake Como - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    I will add just one thing here: No matter how many websites you see, travelogues you read, videos you watch: Lake Como has to be experienced. It took me some amount of time to take it all in and appreciate the beauty of this place. It is not a typical tourist spot, it is not an adventure destination, it is not a place where you can go with a check-list of “attractions to see” and tick them off in a given order. If that excites you: Lake Como is not the place for you. But if you want to experience fine little Italian towns, historic villas with vast beautiful gardens adorning the lake front and get lost in a place to discover it: Lake Como is the destination for you.

    Rain! And an unplanned visit to Lugano
    The next day we had planned to explore Lake Como. If you see Lake Como’s Wikipedia page you will notice that there are number of small cities/towns along the lake. The plan was to take a ferry and visit these towns. However when we woke up we were greeted to some unfriendly weather. It was dark, cloudy and worst: a slight drizzle was slowly turning into a consistent rain shower.
    However without letting that dampen our spirits we quickly started to think about an alternative plan. My wife had read about Lugano which was across the border in Switzerland. One quick look on Google Maps and it wasn’t too far. We checked with the hotel and they informed us that there are regular buses from Menaggio (a small town / city along Lake Como) to Lugano. We drove to Menaggio, parked the car and hopped on to the bus to Lugano.

    29-Start 2.JPG
    Look at those clouds!!

    On the bus to Lugano

    At Italy-Switzerland border

    The weather although not great was much better than what it was in Tremezzo. It was cloudy with sporadic sunshine but it wasn’t raining which made moving around comfortable. I now let the photographs of Lugano do the talking

    Casino of Lugano

    Dark clouds but thankfully no rain !!






    We had lunch at this restaurant. Buzzing with people

    Sunshine !!

    The Lugano City Tour bus

    Pack Up Time !!

    Around Lake Como: Varenna, Menaggio, Bellagio, Como town
    After spending the day in Lugano we were back at our hotel in Tremezzo. The plan for the next four days was to explore the cities, towns around Lake Como and pray for good weather!
    Our prayers were heard and we were greeted to some nice sunshine in the morning. After a quick breakfast at the hotel the plan was to explore Varenna and Bellagio. It was a wonderful day spent exploring those small lakeside towns, having an awesome lunch by the lake and seeing some beautiful villas, churches and Italian houses enroute. My wife is an architect and she had a great time exploring those impressive buildings. Here are the pics:

    Beautiful promenades of Menaggio

    That's where we wanted to go

    You can hire these - expensive though

    Perfect day - Nothing was going to stop us

    Waiting for the ferry to arrive

    There she is..


    Yes : ferries cars as well

    Approaching Varenna


    That's Varenna





    Car's exit first : then the rest

    Last edited: Oct 9, 2012
  3. amogh

    amogh Staff Member Janitor

    Grande Punto 1.3
    The rest of the day was spent in Varenna and Bellagio exploring the cities. I will let the pictures speak

    59-Start 3.jpg
    Entering Varenna

    Houses in Varenna

    I am sure people who stay up there are pretty fit!


    Beautiful laid back town

    On the way to Villa Monastero


    Beautiful stone laden narrow walkways


    Looks as if time has frozen

    A cute lil restaurant tucked away in the corner

    Approaching Bellagio



    Beautiful shades - colourful yet not loud



    We spent the next day in Como town. The attraction there was the Como Cathedral (Duomo di Como). Rest of the day was spent roaming around, some window shopping and enjoying Italian coffee at a nice joint. A relaxed day : did not click too many photographs. It was dark inside the cathedral and "flash photography" was not allowed which rendered all the photography attempts useless. Nevertheless here are a few other pics

    The bus that took us to Como. 30 minutes journey

    Como bus station

    Como cathedral

    You can see number of such cafe's near the cathedral

    Another view of the cathedral

    Remember the three guys from Barfi! ? :)

    82-End 3.jpg
    Touring Cafe & Bar - nice place. Had lunch here

  4. amogh

    amogh Staff Member Janitor

    Grande Punto 1.3
    Leg 2 : Maranello & Milan

    A trip to Italy without having Maranello on the itinerary? Just did not sound right ...

    The pilgrimage had to be done !

    Ferrari Museum had to be seen !

    Ferrari Factory & Fiorano Track tour had to be taken !

    The Ferrari had to be driven !

    The plan was to leave Tremezzo after breakfast and reach Maranello by 1 pm. It was a close to 300 km drive and Google had suggested a travel time of 2 hours 45 minutes. Considering the speed limits on the Auto Strada (130 km/hr) : it looked perfectly doable. We ended up taking exactly 3 hours to reach the hotel.

    We stayed at this beautiful hotel : Locanda Del Mulino in Maranello. Again the people were extremely helpful and friendly. The hotel looks old, but it has all the modern amenities. In fact, the old rustic look makes this hotel look attractive. The breakfast was good and so was the food in the restaurant. The room was a little small to our liking, but manageable. I won't cut points for that. Again rating this hotel 5 Stars. I am not surprised that they have won the "Travelers Choice 2012" award on Trip Advisor

    Before leaving India I had already booked for the two of us tickets to the museum & Ferrari factory and track tour. You can book the tickets in advance here : Online Tickets | Ferrari Museum - Maranello

    You first have to buy tickets for the museum and then after you have done the payment you see an optional link to purchase tickets for the factory and track tour.
    Getting entry to the museum is not a big deal. It's open throughout the day and you can just walk in and get the tickets
    However if you want the factory and track tour it is highly recommended to book in advance.
    The bus that takes you to the factory and track is a 24 seater bus. If you book early your name gets to the top of the list. Boarding on the bus is as per the booking sequence. The guy who has booked first : get's on the bus first. Advantage? If you book early : you can grab for yourself a nice window seat.
    But remember : if you want to book the track and factory tour in advance, you need to purchase the museum tickets first.

    I paid a total of EUR 26 per person for entry to the museum, factory and track tour.

    Apart from the Ferrari tour, I also wanted to take the Lamborghini Museum & factory tour. However on reaching there I was told that the factory was closed for visitors and was going to re-open on 27th September :A We could therefore only see the Lamborghini museum.

    I now start with the pictures: On the way to Maranello & Lamborghini Museum

    83-Start 4.JPG
    On the way to Maranello

    Impressive bridge that one!

    Streets of Maranello

    On the way to Lamborghini museum

    Lamborghini Museum

    350 GT

    The Islero

    The Islero

    The Miura P 400 S

    The Miura P 400 S

    The Jarama 400 GT 2+2

    The Jarama 400 GT 2+2

    The Miura P 400 SV

    The Miura P 400 SV

    The Espada

    The Espada

    The Espada

    The Countach 25th Anniversary Edition

    The Countach 25th Anniversary Edition

    The Diablo 6.0 SE

    The Diablo 6.0 SE

    L 240 Engine - V8, Singe Camshaft, 2.5 lit, 220 HP @ 7500 rpm

    L 240 Engine - V8, Singe Camshaft, 2.5 lit, 220 HP @ 7500 rpm

    L 240 Engine - V8, Singe Camshaft, 2.5 lit, 220 HP @ 7500 rpm

    L 302 Engine - V8, Double Overhead Camshaft, 3.5 lit, 255 HP @ 7500 rpm

    L 302 Engine - V8, Double Overhead Camshaft, 3.5 lit, 255 HP @ 7500 rpm

    L 302 Engine - V8, Double Overhead Camshaft, 3.5 lit, 255 HP @ 7500 rpm

    The LM 002

    The LM 002

    The LM 002
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  5. amogh

    amogh Staff Member Janitor

    Grande Punto 1.3
    Lamborghini Museum pics continued...

    113-Start 5.jpg
    Lamborghini Reventon

    Lamborghini Reventon

    Lamborghini Reventon

    Concept - S : only two of these were built

    Concept - S : only two of these were built

    L 900 I engine. US Special version for powerboats 9.3 lit V12, 650 HP @ 5200 rpm. Weighs 450 kg

    L 900 I engine. US Special version for powerboats 9.3 lit V12, 650 HP @ 5200 rpm. Weighs 450 kg

    L 900 I engine. US Special version for powerboats 9.3 lit V12, 650 HP @ 5200 rpm. Weighs 450 kg

    L-804 V4 Motor - World Class 1 Off Shore Champion. 8.2 lit V12, 1100 HP @ 7500 rpm. Weighs 400 kg

    L-804 V4 Motor - World Class 1 Off Shore Champion. 8.2 lit V12, 1100 HP @ 7500 rpm. Weighs 400 kg

    L-804 V4 Motor - World Class 1 Off Shore Champion. 8.2 lit V12, 1100 HP @ 7500 rpm. Weighs 400 kg

    Diablo (1990) 5.7 lit V12, 485 HP @ 6800 rpm, 580 Nm @ 5200 rpm

    Diablo (1990) 5.7 lit V12, 485 HP @ 6800 rpm, 580 Nm @ 5200 rpm

    Diablo (1990) 5.7 lit V12, 485 HP @ 6800 rpm, 580 Nm @ 5200 rpm

    Murcielago LP 640 (2006) 630 HP @ 8000 rpm, 660 Nm @ 6000 rpm

    Murcielago LP 640 (2006) 630 HP @ 8000 rpm, 660 Nm @ 6000 rpm

    Murcielago LP 640 (2006) 630 HP @ 8000 rpm, 660 Nm @ 6000 rpm

    Murcielago LP 640 (2006) 630 HP @ 8000 rpm, 660 Nm @ 6000 rpm

    Murcielago (2001) 6.2 lit V12, 570 HP @ 7500 rpm, 655 Nm @ 5500 rpm

    Murcielago (2001) 6.2 lit V12, 570 HP @ 7500 rpm, 655 Nm @ 5500 rpm

    Murcielago (2001) 6.2 lit V12, 570 HP @ 7500 rpm, 655 Nm @ 5500 rpm

    Lamborghini Estoque - 4 door sedan

    Lamborghini Estoque - 4 door sedan

    Lamborghini Estoque - 4 door sedan

    Some Lamborghini engineer dude was ripping this car. He just left the car at the entrance with the engine running and calmly walked off.

    Some Lamborghini engineer dude was ripping this car. He just left the car at the entrance with the engine running and calmly walked off.

    Parting shots

    Parting shots

    141-End 5.jpg
    Goodbye !

    Coming up NEXT is THIS .... :)

  6. amogh

    amogh Staff Member Janitor

    Grande Punto 1.3
    The following was planned for the next day:
    • Visit to Ferrari Museum
    • Ferrari Factory & Fiorano Track Tour
    • Driving the Ferrari

    As mentioned in the earlier post I had pre-booked my tickets for the museum, factory and track tour before leaving India. As per the instructions in the e-mail received from them, I was at the museum entrance at 9.15 to collect my passes. I was the first guy to be there and the museum parking lot wore a deserted look. I clicked some random pictures waiting for the museum to open.

    The museum opened at 9.30 and by that time people had started to pour in. I quickly picked up my passes and entered the museum.

    142-Start 6.JPG

    One of the many shops around the museum that offer Ferrari test drives

    Ferrari Museum entrance

    Ferrari 166 F2

    1947 Ferrari 125 S

    Ferrari 166

    Ferrari 166

    Ferrari 250 GT

    Ferrari 250 GT

    Shell !!

    1984 Ferrari GTO

    1984 Ferrari GTO

    1984 Ferrari GTO

    My favourite - The Ferrari Four

    My favourite - The Ferrari Four

    My favourite - The Ferrari Four

    My favourite - The Ferrari Four

    Ferrari SA Aperta

    Ferrari SA Aperta

    Ferrari SA Aperta

    Ferrari SA Aperta

    458 Italia

    458 Italia

    458 Italia

    Enzo Ferrari

    Enzo Ferrari

    Enzo Ferrari

    169-End 6.JPG
    Enzo Ferrari

    Continued ...
    Last edited: Sep 23, 2012
  7. amogh

    amogh Staff Member Janitor

    Grande Punto 1.3
    Some more pics from the Ferrari Museum ...

    170-Start 7.JPG
    This is the Ferrari 360 Barchetta. The placard placed next to the car says "Single Model on order of Avvocato Giovanni Agnelli to Pininfarina as wedding gift of Luca di Montezemolo, the owner

    Ferrari 166 Aerlux : looks like an Amby ain't it?

    Scale Model of the Ferrari 599XX EVO used for Wind Tunnel testing

    This section is dedicated to Gilles Villeneuve. They also show a nice film on him that talks about the build up to his fatal accident at Spa. Especially his relationship with team mate Pironi and how Gilles felt betrayed after the overtaking incident at San Marino Grand Prix

    Gilles Villeneuve section

    Gilles Villeneuve section

    The Ferrari F1 Team Hall of Fame

    The Ferrari F1 Team Hall of Fame

    The Ferrari F1 Team Hall of Fame

    There is an "Experience F1 Sounds" section in the hall fame. The audio system is powered by JBL

    Next on cards was the much awaited tour to the Ferrari factory & Fiorano track. We took about two hours to see the museum and had some free time on hands. The factory and track tour was scheduled to start at 12.30 pm. Got a nice cup of coffee and a slice of pizza in the "Ferrari Cafe" and waited for the bus.

    End of the musuem tour. This is the bus that took us to the factory and track

    The most disappointing aspect about the factory and track tour is the complete prohibition on photography. They even seal cell phone cameras so that nobody secretly clicks and photographs. While exiting the bus they make sure that nobody has tampered with the seal and in case it is tampered they check the phone !

    The details about the factory and track tour are here : Ferrari Factory & Track Tour

    Rules for the guided tour : Rules

    We were in Maranello on 5th & 6th September (The Monza F1 was on the same weekend). We could see F1 trucks at Fiorano waiting to be loaded with parts. We also got to see Fernando's car :) If you are lucky they take the tour bus very close to the track. But when we were at the track there was some testing activity going on and hence entry was prohibited. However we were able to see the "Start/Stop" section and the place where Fernando Alonso & Fellipe Massa stay when they are testing at Fiorano.

    I won't write much about the Ferrari Factory experience because it really has to be experienced !! No amount of words can do justice to what you get to see. The buildings are architectural wonders and some of the best architects of Italy and from around the world have created those. Ironically the building that has Luca di Montezemolo's office is surprisingly simple. For a guy who is known to be flamboyant and expressive : the building is a complete mismatch. The highlights for me during the factory visit were:
    1. A yellow 458 Italia coming out from the Paint Shop and going to the Water Leakage testing bay
    2. Two Ferrari Four's ready for final testing before being delivered to the customers
    3. Seeing the wind tunnel

    If you are planning a visit to Maranello I strongly urge you to book for the factory tour in advance. It is absolutely worth it! You can get some idea about what you get to see by signing up and watching the videos here : Intoduction to the Maranello Experience

    After finishing the factory and track tour and being absolutely awed by seeing the way the people at Ferrari go about their work, it was time to DRIVE the Ferrari. There are a number of "agencies" around the museum that offer you Ferrari drives. Most popular is Push Start and I had booked with them a drive for the 458 Italia. However there was a huge rush when I got there and I was informed that the 458 Italia is not available. I was disappointed and thought of biding some time before deciding what to do next. While we were sitting in a garden right across the museum a Brazilian girl approached us and started singing "Kajrare Kajrare" !! My wife and I were :eek: (Apparently bollywood songs are very famous in Brazil) She then told us that she can arrange for a Ferrari drive for us and won't charge a bomb! We went to the office : looked at the rates and finalised on the Ferrari California.

    This is the car I drove

    That's me and the beautiful Ferrari California

    Me at the wheel

    I am not even going to try to describe how it feels to drive this car! You will know what I mean when you drive one (and those who have driven know what I mean !)

    Well : this was all from Maranello. Next part of my write up and photographs will be about the final stop of our journey : Milan.

    Maranello to Milan
    Our next and final destination of the journey was Milan. It was a 200 km drive and going by the amount of time it took me to reach Milan from Como I estimated 2.5 hours for this stretch. We had to drop off the rental car in Milan by 11.30 am. Thankfully the drop off point was only 1.5 kms from the hotel where we were going to stay. So we planned the following:
    • Leave Maranello by 7 am - stretch 7.30 am
    • Drive directly to our hotel in Milan - estimated time of check-in 10.00 am
    • Drop the luggage & freshen up
    • Drop off the car and explore Milan

    Everything went as per plan. The drive from Maranello to Milan was uneventful and we covered 200 kms in 2 hours flat. On our way we saw one massive accident on the other side of the road. It was a massive shunt involving three trucks. The cops shut down the highway completely which resulted in a 5 km long traffic jam on the other side. We thanked god that we were not caught in the midst of it !

    The accident on the other side of the highway

    We stayed at Hotel Susa in Milan : Nice hotel in a good location, the bus stop was close by, had good number of restaurants around.

    When we reached the hotel our room was not ready (Check-In time was noon, we had reached the hotel at 10 am so can't blame them). However they did offer us some nice coffee in the small cafe that they had and got the room ready. We quickly freshened up and set out to drop the car and then explore Milan.

    The public transport in Milan is good. After dropping off the car we purchased a day ticket which enabled us access to all forms of public transport available in Milan (Metro, Bus and Tram). We spent the rest of the day roaming on the streets of Milan, visited the H-U-G-E cathedral of Milan and the Milan Central Station.

    Milan Central Station - reminded me of CST in Mumbai

    Milan Central Station

    Milan Central Station

    Milan Central Station

    Milan Duomo - It's HUGE !!

    Duomo Square

    Duomo Square

    Inside the Duomo

    Inside the Duomo

    Inside the Duomo

    Inside the Duomo

    Inside the Duomo


    Shopping Street - Stores of top notch brands

    Ferrari Store in Milan
  8. amogh

    amogh Staff Member Janitor

    Grande Punto 1.3
    And the journey ends...

    Thus came to end our Italian sojourn. However there was one more twist before we left Milan.

    As mentioned in the earlier post we had dropped off the rental car after reaching Milan. Now our flight to India was from Malpensa Airport which was around 50 kms from Milan. The flight departure time was 9.00 am which meant we had to be at the airport at 7.00 am. So one of our "activities" was to explore the options to reach the airport at 7.00 am. After considering various options doing the cost comparisons and most importantly looking at the convenience we concluded that the best option was to rent a car.

    My wife wanted to visit an architecture design museum in Milan and I had to go hunt for the rental car. I headed to the same office (Auto Europa) where I had dropped the car earlier. I did not want too big a car since we were only the two of us and had only two bags. Besides I wanted the car only for a drive to the airport. I explained the situation to the rental office guy and following was the conversation

    Rental Office Guy : "So you don't want a big car, don't want to pay too much, will drop off the car at the airport"

    Me : "Yes. You got that right"

    Rental Office Guy : "Let me see what I can do for you"

    Rental Office Guy : "Petrol or Diesel"

    Me : "Diesel" (Petrol & Diesel are equally priced in Italy)

    Rental Office Guy : (After a long pause) "No. I don't have anything in diesel"

    Me : (Disappointed) "What do you have?"

    Rental Office Guy : "I do have Fiat 500 : Petrol, Automatic transmission. Would you like to have it?"

    Me : (With a H-U-G-E grin ) "Y E S !!!"

    Done deal !! I stepped out of the rental office with keys to a cute lil White Fiat 500 that was going to be our final partner for the journey. What a fitting end !!

    200-Start 7.jpg
    Our ride to the airport. Fiat 500 !

    Our ride to the airport. Fiat 500 !

    Our ride to the airport. Fiat 500 !

    So ended our journey. Dropped the Fiat 500 at the airport, checked in and had a smooth journey back to India. Perfect ending to the vacation.

    With that I end my L-O-N-G travelogue. I would be adding some more pictures in the coming days. However for now this is what I have.

    I will try my best to answer your questions and welcome your feedback.

    Thanks for reading !



    THE END...
    Last edited: Oct 9, 2012
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  9. amogh

    amogh Staff Member Janitor

    Grande Punto 1.3
    Moving to Street & Travel Experience section. Look forward to your responses and comments

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  10. Shadowfax

    Shadowfax Regolare

    excellent write up. hats off sir

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