The Lindau Messenger, Lindau – Como
12 days, 13 nights Tour
Alpine crossing by Post coach and team of horses From Germany into
Austria, Lichtenstein, Switzerland and finish the journey in Italy
In the morning a guided tour through Lindaumorning with a reception by town officials with snacks and drinks in the old lighthouse. The mail-coach pulled by a five-in-hand team awaits, we start our route along the lakeside via the Bavarian/Austrian border through Bregenz/Austria. After a picnic stop in the fields, continuing through the Rhine Valle to Feldkirch, the old border fortress near the Principality of Liechtenstein. Here in the Romantic hotel "Alpenrose“ we will spend the night.
The mail-coach leaves Vaduz at 09.30 am. Via the town of Balzers to the Swiss border, a point only marked by some flags and painted pylons. Lunch break is at Luziesteig, a Swiss army fortress. Proceeding after lunch through "Heidiland“, the famous country where Johanna Spyri’s novel was set, our route leads through Jenins, Malans, Landquart and Zizers. arriving at Chur, capital of the Swiss Canton of Graubünden here we stay the night at a historic hotel.
From Chur we cross the Rhine river for Felsberg and Tramins, the latter with its characteristic church steeple. Croosing the Rhine again where the two parts of the river, the Hinterrhein and the Vorderrhein merge. Via a narrow track "Polenweg“, which was built by interned Polish officers during World War II, leading us high above the Rhine river closer and closer to the mountains. Stopping for a lunch near the castle of Ortenburg. We then drive uphill via Rodels, Pratval, Fürstenau, and arrive at Thusis, where we stay the night in the hotel "Weißes Kreuz“.
We enter the gloomy gorge of the Via Mala, towering rocks gives us an impression of the difficulties encountered in crossing the Alps in the old days. The Rhine River has dug itself about 600m into the rocks. Leaving the dark Via Mala (the bad way) we enter a wide, friendly valley. For lunch we stop in Andeer at the hotel "Fravi“. We then continue through narrow lanes and winding roads, stopping at the Roffla gorge, where one man, with his hands and simple tools, dug a tunnel through the solid rock.
A rest day gives us the opportunity to explore this little village; we will be impressed seeing the old manor houses dating back to the times when the whole place here lived from the traffic across the pass.
Late forenoon the mail-coach winds upward into rocks of the northern ramp of the Splügen Pass arriving at the top 2.213m above sea level, mountain peaks are covered with snow. Crossing the border from Switzerland into Italy, the southern side of the pass is totally different: no flowers, no low trees, just barren rocks and moss. We arrive at Montespluga, a modest post inn will be our home for the rest of the day and night. The evening will give us the first impression of Italian cuisine and hospitality.
Late in the morning, we start the descent into the Italian valleys leading into the Cardinell gorge to our next destination Chiavenna. Continuing on winding roads to the small place of Pianazzo before driving into tunnels and seemingly endless winding roads cut into solid rock. Below we can see the silver band of the river Liro. We arrive at Campodolcino. Lunch break either here or further along at San Giacomo Filippi. We arrive at Chiavenna and a reception by Town officials at the piazza. Overnight hotel is the "Crimea“.
Full day of rest in Chiavenna. Opportunity for individual sightseeing, possibly visiting the Palazzo Vertemate, the only left-over of a major town which a landslide had totally destroyed in the 17th century, or a visit to the Garden of Giants
Leaving Chiavenna along quiet sidetracks to Novate Mezzola, then along Lake Como. Arrival at Colico or a place nearby for a lunch break. Continuation of the tour via Dorio, Dervio, Bellano to Varenna. Here our whole turn-out, including five horses, mail-coach, and passengers embark on the ferry boat. Our voyage is to Bellagio, the most beautiful place on Lake Como.
Rest day in Bellagio: Walking around, swimming, shopping in the very tempting boutiques, boating, relaxing or visiting the famous gardens
Departing from Bellagio, the road leads us high above Lake Como shaded by the old trees on both sides of the narrow, winding roads. Lunch break at "Faggetto Lario“, a typical restaurant, famous for its fish dishes. After lunch, we continue via Torno and some dark tunnels. We arrive at Como at about 4pm, to the hotel "Terminus“ located at the lakeside. Our journey is at an end except for a farewell party this evening in the hotel.
Our tour ends after breakfast.
The Tour includes:
- 12-day journey with a five-in-hand mail-coach
- 13 nights accommodation and breakfast
- All receptions and guided tours