And the sun came out

We woke to beautiful sunshine on Lake Trasimento so Kim headed down to the shoreline with a book and cuppa.

Our journey to Ancona started with a glorious drive around the South side of the lake before arriving at our first stop.

Cantina Berioli, is a small award winning wine producer in the Umbrian hills near Perugia.

Christina who owns the vineyard with her husband Roberto, panicked at the sight of us. She was flustered that she couldn’t speak English, then made us feel at home with a summary of each wine and presented us with cheese, freshly sliced ham and chocolate to accompany the wines all in very good English!

We tasted four wines, followed by a tour of the vineyard given by Christina’s assistant (who had been summoned in early to deal with us!)

We learned about the reason for planting roses by the vines, do you know?

And the cellar where 40-50,000 bottles of wine are made each year. Most are exported to Germany or China!

We loaded up the vans with cases of wine, Ken and Jacky headed off to Ancona, spurred on by vague promises of a new wing mirrors. We sat and watched them go..

We settled down for lunch al fresco….. this is the life (apart from the flies)

We’d had vague plans to visit a medieval town of Fabriano and Grotte Di Frassasi en route so set off on the 80 mile drive. John says ‘one medieval town looks like another and we’ve done one this year’ so we gave Fabriano a miss. We thought the Grotte was worth a 15 minute detour, mainly because we needed a break and a cuppa. We hadn’t planned on 2 hours for the tour so were on our way without getting further than the car park!

Falconara Marritima, on the coast, didn’t get our custom either…. it looked rather grim and we do shop in Waitrose! As a result, we arrived at Ancona port 3.5 hours before sailing. On a positive note, we successfully managed to fill the van up with fuel, we’re not sure there are petrol stations in Croatia…..

We met up with Ken and Jacky, still with a broken wing mirror, and aimed for the ferry. We were told off for inadvertently trying to queue jump. Us? We’re British and we definitely don’t jump queues, we were mortified and here’s proof that we did queue politely.

It got worse. By now, you know that we’re not naturals in motorhomes. We were told we must reverse onto the ferry into a narrow corridor assisted by men with shrill whistles and determined hand signals. It was very scary but too late to change our minds

We are all safely stowed on the ferry, our cabins are 40 degrees and beer is costing a fortune! Cheers.

Castiglione del Lago

There is a vineyard and farm associated with our hotel that showcases Tuscan food and wine. We were a little concerned by one local recipe.

It was still raining when John and Ken went to pick up the motorhomes.

Jacky and Kim offered to shop to save time. It’s a shame because John loves foreign supermarkets and Kim really can’t get excited by them!

For the first time, we found ourselves drinking tea in the supermarket carpark. We have truly become cheapskate campers!

We arrived, without incident or getting lost at Castiglione del Lago by early afternoon. Ken and Jacky weren’t quite so lucky.

A lorry, on the wrong side of the road, took out their wing mirror. Jacky had the fright of her life when it went bang! We are waiting for advice from JustGo to see if it needs repairing before we continue, in the meantime, we’re parked under the trees at Camping Listro.

The site is rather muddy but the sky cleared and we had a lovely view over Lago Trasimeno.

The medieval town of Castiglione del Lago was a 30 minute walk and well worth the effort, it was rather nice.

No trip to Italy is complete without a Pizzeria visit so we finished the evening in true Italian style, while talking to a couple from Holland about petrol engines and the exchange rate of Sterling. For the price of one weeks holiday in the UK they used to get 4 weeks in Italy. Nowadays they find it very cost effective to holiday in the UK having just returned from touring Scotland and the Lake District.