Exploring Umbria by car - Castiglione del Lago

Castiglione del Lago Travel Blog

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Abandoned estate on the east side of Lake Trasimeno
Leaving Spoleto and driving back northwards we could see heavy black clouds heading west but most ominously the SS75 highway seem to be leading us right into the part of the storm with the the most lightning.  I was hoping that while we were exploring Spoleto the storm would have passed the lake but now it seemed we would meet the storm again in Perugia.

While driving west along the SS75 the rain kept getting heavier and the lighting closer.  Just past Perugia we started going in and out of tunnels.  Michiyo had turned off the wiper blades in one tunnel and as soon as we exited there was a lighting strike nearby and all we could see was a deluge of water.  It was almost game over for us.   It took Michiyo a couple of seconds to turn the wipers back on but it seemed like ages as we couldn't see anything.
Main gate to the castle
   Fortunately the cars behind us were not so close and the road didn't curve that much outside of the tunnel.  With that final little dramatic episode we saw the last of the storm for the day.   We passed it but it seemed to have expended the last of its energy over Perugia.  Once we arrived at the lake there was always black clouds on the horizon that looked threatening but they seemed to move south of the lake.

We exited the highway in Magione, and were lost again.  The ubiquitous Belletti Editore regional road maps one can buy at the various new agents and in all the souvenir shops are very nice but only the major freeways are marked.   Most times it was easy to get around as all one needs to do is follow the signs to the next village or town but if you click on the Belletti Editore link above you can see that it is hard to navigate when one wants to travel the smaller roads.
   I wanted to travel around the southern part of the lake and kept trying to find signs for Castello di Montalera or Monte Buono but was unsuccessful.   We would up heading north and then finally finding the lake side road at Monte del Lago.  What a beautiful drive!!!  We passed an old abandoned fortified estate and saw old castles guarding the islands.

 Castiglione del Lago occupies a promontory on the west side of the lake.   The castle itself is a popular tourist attraction and just inside the gate there are many stores selling local produce and giving samples.   A lady talked us into her deli and loaded us down with samples.  We bought some salami and prosciutto for later.   If the boys are every interested in backpacking or budget travel with their old man in the future a lot of money can be saved by not eating so much in restaurants but just loading up on the excellent meats, cheeses, and breads available in France and Italy.
  I'm getting hungry just typing this and thinking about it.

We ate at a so-so place along the north wall with a million dollar view of the lake.   We were still full from lunch and just in general from eating so well on this holiday so only had some pizza.  Before heading for home we browsed at some of the stores along the castle's main road.   I believe the drive home was a little under an hour.   It was a great day.

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Abandoned estate on the east side …
Abandoned estate on the east side…
Main gate to the castle
Main gate to the castle
Castiglione del Lago
photo by: polvandenwirre