Christmas Impressions.

Christmas is the spirit of giving without a thought of getting. It is happiness because we see joy in people. It is forgetting our selves and finding time for others. It is discarding the meaningless and stressing the true values.
It's the perfect time to celebrate the love of God and family and to create memories that will last forever.
From the bottom of my heart I want to wish you a Merry Christmas, spend these days with your loved ones and hoping they can be full of joy and serenity!

Wild Abruzzo.

ITA - per inaugurare al meglio questo anno ho deciso di andare a fare visita a un posto molto magico che si trova a qualche ora di distanza  da casa mia. Il castello di Rocca Calascio è il castello più alto del centro Italia, famoso fin dagli anni 70 per essere location di svariati film con produzioni da tutto il mondo. Il castello si trova in Abruzzo, una regione del centro Italia prevalentemente montuosa dove il clima in inverno sa essere davvero duro ( e meraviglioso ahah), a 1450 m su una collina montuosa Rocca Calascio offre una vista a 360 gradi su tutte le cime più alte della regione e un atmosfera a dir poco surreale che ti trasporta direttamente in altri tempi. Merita una visita anche il bellissimo borgo di Calascio che si trova pochi metri sotto la Rocca, dove potrete gustare ottimo cibo e camminare tra le vie di un meraviglioso paese medievale. Se programmate di andarci controllate sempre prima le previsioni meteorologiche perché possono essere molto imprevedibili, una bella giacca e scarpe da trekking ( per raggiungere la Rocca occorre camminare 10/15 minuti) e vi assicuro passerete una giornata magica e memorabile.

 

ENG - to inaugurate this year I decided to go and visit a very magical place that is a few hours away from my house. The castle of Rocca Calascio is the highest castle in central Italy ( 1450 m) famous since the 70s for be the location of several cinema productions from all around the world. The castle is located in Abruzzo, a region predominantly mountainous, where the climate in winter can be really hard (and wonderful ahah) on a mountain hill Rocca Calascio offers a 360° view on all the highest peaks of the region and with a surreal atmosphere, this place takes you directly to other times. Also the beautiful village of Calascio worth a visit, located a few meters below the Rocca, where you can enjoy excellent italian food and walk through the streets of a wonderful medieval village. If you plan to go there always check the weather forecast because it can be very unpredictable, a warm jacket and hiking shoes (to reach the Rocca you need to walk 10/15 minutes) and I assure you will spend a magical and memorable day.

Fifth Day: Hintersee & Dolomites.

When we arrived at Hintersee, we were very tired but, after a quick shower, the urge to explore this place was too strong .. but not before eating a giant and delicious bavarian dinner! We slept in this magnificent hotel, where we made friends with locals. Here we were far far away from everything and everyone. After dinner, we made a walk to see this amazing place, but it was quick 'cause we went to sleep quite early, for next morning's alarm clock would have rung really early. Why? Because we had to shot the sunrise! After a wonderful night of sleep, at 5:00 am the alarm rang and we headed to the most famous lake's point .. even here, incredibly, we were alone (there were only two other guys), which is quite strange considering the fame of this place. I think it was one of the finest dawns of my life, the German landscapes are way too beautiful! After dawn, we drove for another hour all over the valley in search of other spots, and after another lovely breakfast, we left the hotel and took our way back to the Dolomites and then to our home. This was perhaps the most beautiful trip ever, everything went well, and was a trip full of joy, peace and so many wonderful emotions. I understood that I am made to live a life like this: being on the road and exploring our beautiful earth, alone or with the people you love, is a wonderful way to live life at the best.

Firth Day: Berchtesgaden Land.

First of all, I want to say that this was one of the most beautiful days of my life.. but lets begin form the start: the morning departure from Hallstatt. When I just opened my eyes, I felt there was something different in the air, and once opened the window onto the mountains, I realized that I was right .. it had snowed on all the mountains and the woods all around us, there was a slight fog that covered pretty much everything haha and everywhere I looked I saw only white. With a bit of sadness, we jumped in our car and leaved this little village that had stolen our hearts! The next destination was in Germany, in the Berchtesgaden National Park, to see two places that had been on our bucket list for so many years. We had many kms that separated us from the German border, so we started to drive and after two hours we found a crazy spring snowfall. It was one of the thickest snowfall I've ever seen, everything was white, from the tips of the tree branches to the road, so we had to go slowly for enjoy this scenery a little bit more. Seriously, I thought I was in heaven in that moment, I felt so alive.. but suddenly the snow went away, just when we arrived at the end of the valley before entering the highway near Salzburg. Once in Germany, we headed to the famous Konigsee to take the ferry that would have made us cross the large lake that looks like a fjord. Luckily we found an available boat right away and we embarked on it .. I knew it would be a great experience but what I felt when the boat sailed was beyond all my imagination, something that it's hard to write here: seeing the sailboat pushing us deeper and deeper in the valley, hearing the captain playing the trumpet or the echo that expands in all the mountains around… I swear I felt so many emotions, I can’t really explain them. Once arrived at the second lake (Obersee) after the last stop, I felt completely at the end of the world, like there was a door for another dimension right in front of us. This is one of the most beautiful and wildest places that I've ever seen .. all perfect, almost no one around, cloudy and rainy weather, essentially the best way to enjoy the magic of this place. We walked all day long, lost in this valley, and with a heart full of joy, we returned to the car to drive to the last spot of this trip, Hintersee, before returning to our home.

Third Day: Hallstatt.

Left the valley of Gosau, we head off to the famous village of Hallstatt, and I feel inside me a sense of excitement and emotion. When I was 8 years old, I came in this place with my family but unfortunately I remember very few things about that trip .. During the months before this adventure, I studied every single point/spot and street of this old little town and I was looking forward to exploring this UNESCO site village. Out of the Gosau Valley, the road turns right along the Hallstatt Lake (Hallstättersee). Between the trees near the road, I begin to notice the tip of the church's bell tower and the houses built on the mountain and I'm happy like a child on Christmas night ahah Once arrived in our cozy hotel (Gasthof Grüner Anger) near the high mountains beside the lake, we go outside and we begin to explore the town. We immediately fall in love with the gorgeous and wonderful atmosphere of this village, and even if I was afraid to find thousands of people, the place is completely empty.. maybe it is for the heavy storm ahah (at the end of the day I was totally wet ahah). We walk for some hours and we explore every single point of the village, visit every corner, from the panoramic points to the hidden spots, and I can really say that I don't think there is anything like Hallstatt in the world, the atmosphere that one can breathe is pure magic, the time in this place seems to have stopped.. Hallstatt deserves all the fame that the world gives to it. We dine in a loving fast food along the lake's shores, then we go back to the Gasthof.. when the night begins to fall, we try to go out one last time but the storm is too strong to get out.. so, hearing the sound of the water on the rooftops, I fall asleep ..

Second Day: Welcome to Austria.

Good morning World! After having seen the best sunrise of my life from the balcony of my room, and after a classic and wonderful breakfast of South Tyrol, luggages in the car again and let's go to Austria! Bought the highway tickets, we start our 3-hours trip. The landscapes we find in front of us seems to have come out from a fairy tale, the villages are so perfect they look fake, the mountains around us are bigger and bigger .. from the streets of the countryside to the highway, every street you take in this land assured you a wonderful view! The final destination of the day is the famous village Hallstatt, but first we go to Lake Gosau (Gosausee), while slowly approaching this village, the panorama begins to change, from the warm spring we slowly return to winter. It seems that time has stopped a few months ago in this valley.. the air is cold, the mountains and lawns are still snowy, we are catapulted right away in another world! After have turned the corner, we see the village of Gosau and .. the mountains of the Dachstein that stand behind, whose majesty leaves us speechless. It's incredible, there aren't other terms to describe it! The lake, though it was not full of water but still amazing, remind me so much the great Canadian lakes, especially for the giant mountains standing at each side of the lake! After a short walk on the road near the lake, it's time to continue our journey through Hallstatt, so we say goodbye to this place and we go back to the car for hit the road once again..

First Day: Dolomites.

Here we are. Wake up at 4.30 am, luggages ready and loaded into the car, and we go, the Alps waiting for us (and almost 7 hours driving too, fuck ahah). The hours fly between laughters, naps, music and much food, and finally we reach the Dolomites (our home). Yes, the Dolomites have always been our home. We search for the agritourism ( "Kleinmarerhof") where we’re going to spend the night, and when we arrive, it seems too beautiful to be true.. The beauty of this place is amazing, with absolute peace and a breathtaking view that leaves us speechless! We put our suitcases in the room and after have greeted the owner, we go straight away in search of some things for the long trip to Austria that awaits us the next day. After a quick tour of the town of Dobbiaco ( Toblach ), we go to see the famous and now familiar Lake of Braies ( Pragser Wildsee ) to take some photos and to make our drone (which unfortunately crashed for too much wind ahah) fly. Back to the farmhouse, we find a warm and delicious dinner prepared by Mrs. Annamaria, with all the delicious food typical of their home, which is to say the perfect ending of a long day like this. But out of the dining room the sunset is giving its best, so between a portion and another I jump outside to shot some photos .. After the dinner we go back in the room, I have a quick shower, and before going to sleep, I go on the balcony to admire the stunning (and obligatory) view of the stars. And with their light and the Dolomites still in my eyes, I fall asleep, dreaming of what is waiting for me the next day.

Snowy Adventures.

Cold memories from a beautiful day between high mountains and deep forest