Schilpario and Pradella, Italy ~ Romancing Italy

Jul 11, 2011

Schilpario and Pradella, Italy

Weekend visit in the Bergamasc Alps in Lombardy for trekking.

Belltower at Schilpario church, Piazza Cardinal Maj


Piazza Cardinal Maj                                            Piazza dell'Orso

We went without making reservations, thinking we were still out of the high season. Wrong, wrong, wrong. This little mountain town is not that far from Milan and even closer to the bustling Bergamo. So it's an easy get-away for city dwellers to come for a weekend or as we discovered, for just the night.

Lodging at Schilpario

Accomodation on Friday was a breeze. Just about every lodging in the town of Schilpario had Friday night free, but not Saturday. We chose to stay at the Hotel Pineta in town and then at Pradella, a small community outside of town, for Saturday night. Christina's Bed and Breakfast was our first choice and she had a room free on Friday but the shared bathroom down the hall was off putting. (Haven't done that in a while.) She wasn't that welcoming either and  her question as to why don't we go to another establishment made me want to leave immediately. The melting icing on the cake was when she didn't want to tell us her price until we told her what the other hotels had quoted, then said that was her price too. I had grown wings by this time.

Saturday night we spent at the Hotel San Marco in Pradella, the only hotel that had rooms available (and the first one we drove by saying we didn't want to stay at). They have an onsite museum of fossils and minerals.

Local church at Pradella; view from Hotel San Marco

Sentiero CAI 422 to Pizzo Camino above Schilpario

We spent Saturday afternoon trekking up to the base of bald headed Pizzo Camino, a trail that went straight up the vertical with very few turns to tone down the incline. It was like stairs without the benefit of a flat platform for your feet.
Zoom to Pizzo Camino from Schilpario;                              Peek of trail to mountain head.

View of Schilpario from trail;                                          base of Pizzo Camino at Rifugio Ebolo (closed)


We ordered the 'pane dolce', sweet bread, that is a typical pastry for the area and much bigger than the traditional brioche.

Dinner was a delight at the Agriturismo Gigia (pity they didn't have rooms, but some areas of Italy are restricted in this way.) They served bruschettta while we made up our minds. There was a fixed menu that included a taste of two "primi" and two "secondi", desert, coffee and drinks included, but we chose individual plates, a local ravioli and baked lamb. The food was delicious...and we left with two of their own goat cheeses in hand.



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