Friday, 19 July 2013

Travel adventures - Lugano, Switzerland

After Zurich it was time to head south and chase the sunshine. 

The landscapes from the train journey made it impossible to focus on anything besides the rolling green mountain hills and deep clear blue lakes around us. Highly recommended for anyone who hasn't yet seen it. 

Lugano. In the heart of Ticino, an area in the southern Italian part of Switzerland, this city circles a stunning lake and curves up along the hills. 

On recommendation I stayed at the Hotel/Hostel Montarina (thanks @hostelz). The plan was to meet new people and do this the proper traveling way. So hostels all the way, and thankfully got very lucky with all of them. 

Something you can't really miss out on when passing these mountainous landscapes is a good old hike. 

On day two I joined up with another hostler for a 13 km stroll between Monte Tamaro (1,962 meter) to Monte Lema (1,621 m). And of course the remaining stroll up and down and up again after the (terrifying but worthwhile) cable cars. 

Cable cars will get you up to the Santa Maria degli Angeli Chapel by Mario Botta (Monte Tamaro). An absolutely stunning architectural creation in it's discreet view point like facade but complex interior and light-play. 

 Then it was onwards and upwards.

For lunch we were joined by these charming guys!

After that, and with only an hour or so left until the last cable car and far longer to walk (yes, we did make it) we strolled right into a rain cloud and lightning started. Every hike needs a little (!) bit of adventure!

Day three I came across this little gem. 

Had to be a Coyote Ugly didn't it... Well no one danced on the bar but we did get to know another hosteling adventurer. 

A man called Bob, the definition of former hippie who had lived and worked all aspects of music and was on the search for something in Europe. He invited a group of us along to see some of his old buddies... They played Woodstock back in the day and were in town for a local music-fest so we could hardly say no!

Bit of Jeffersons Airplane anyone? Absolutely fantastic, and the atmosphere of the crowd was indescribable, absolutely amazing as people of all ages sang and danced the night away!

Next up was the Family Stone (sans Sly). Equally great atmosphere and they had the house jumping to that funky beat. 

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