I was a bit sad leaving Venice. I'd met some lovely people and was starting to get used to its rhythm, yet I had already planned to go to Milan!
In Milan I met with a family friend, Paul, whose of Italian origins and knows the area particularly well. Fortunately for me, this man who travels around the world regularly for business, was in Milan the same time as myself!
He picked me up from the station and then we went on a small tour around the city, saw the Galleria and the Duomo. We were lucky to have the organ playing while in the Duomo. The acoustics were spectacular! And the cathedral too, of course!
We also toured around a town called Monza. It features a small cathedral that is very simple on the outside but jaw-droppingly beautiful on the inside. Frescoes everywhere! I wasn't prepared for it! The most special thing about this church is that it contains the Iron Crown of Lombardy - the royal crown used for the Kingdom of Italy until Napoleon took it and crowned himself. That was kind of the end of that then...
I have no photos, a church service was about to start so it didn't feel appropriate. However, it was a wonderful experience.
The next day we went on a long day trip to Lago Di Garda and the beginning of the Alps. This was spectacular! To be brief, small mountain towns with Austrian style architeture, old crumbling castles, churches on hills... Then more churches on hills... Oh! And another one... The alps make our mountains look like pipsqueaks... Stunning. I'm very lucky and grateful to have been shown this beautiful part of Italy!
I then journeyed to Genoa for the one night. (I'm sitting in my BnB right now! Mainly coz I don't really want to go out... The men stare through you here it seems...) anyway! To Genoa... And while Italy has art, architecture, gardens, food, music, culture! I went to the acquarium. It's one of the largest in Europe... So why not?! Manatees, jellyfish, spectacular coral and dolphins playing with the cords that were being used to clean the pools.
Pics below! Next! The Cinque Terre and Pisa!