The Lake and it’s Mountains, Lugano

Lugano, an absolute gem in the Mountains

Another month, another trip.. This is becoming a bit of a thing for me..

Lugano was first on the hit list. I flew into Zurich, and caught the SBB cross country train into Lugano. The train ride was amazing, going past Lake Zurich, Zug..

The views were amazing. The train was worth the journey alone!

Trains in Switzerland are a doddle, SBB run a superb service which is rarely late or delayed!

I arrived into Lugano Station to this view. I’ve wanted to visit here for a long time, but never really knew how to fit it into a trip. The Swiss / Italian tour was the perfect blend. As usual I was set up for an Air Bnb, it was a little out of the main centre but it was amazing value for a country which is expensive, well.. most assume it is!

FC Lugano’s Cornaredo Stadium

I don’t goto a city without seeing a stadium, that has become a thing for me too. This may not have been a huge Wembley like stadium, but what a backdrop. Nestled between mountains. What a place to play football..

I had four goals for my trip to Lugano; 1) Hike Monte Bre. 2) Hike Monte San Salvatore. 3) Swim in Lake Lugano. 4) Eat Immense Pizza.. Yeah that’s a goal.

My hike up Monte Bre started with the use of the Funicular. I’d been travelling all day and with limited time to hike I opted to cut some time off. You can find the Funicular on Via Pico.

Goal 1 – Hike Monte Bre

At the summit of Monte Bre you’re met with a beautiful view over the Lake shame about the cafe umbrellas below! I walked a couple of trails and headed down to Ristorante Vetta Monte Bre…

Ristorante Vetta Monte Bre is probably the most picturesc restaurant I’ve ever seen on my travels so far.. Perfect spot for an Aperol, beautiful views of Lake Lugano..

I started my long hike back down the mountain, stopped off at a couple of view points. Probably one of the most peaceful places I’ve been. I didn’t see anyone during my descent..

I walked approx 2 hours back from the summit to my Air Bnb, and I was beat. I had planned to hike Monte San Salvatore the next morning, obviously it was time for a pizza and sleep to prepare.

I was up early for my hike of Monte San Salvatore. Mornings by Lake Lugano are beautiful..

The San Salvatore hike is no joke. There are a few options for your ascent; Use this website, it shows all the walks and trails… CLICK HERE!

I opted for a difficult route, up the side of the funicular, up the front of the mountain.. Paradiso-Pazzallo-San Salvatore was the route I used.

I saw 1 other person during my hike.. it was the ultimate reflective hike. It’s pretty well sign posted, but use the link and work out the trail which suits you.

Stunning views of the Lake

Probably worth noting that the hike trails will require walking boots or a decent trainer.. the trails get wet, it’s very loose ground also. Be careful here, it does tend to rain at night and the trail was pretty raw during my hike.

Goal 2 – Hike Monte San Salvatore

Views from Monte San Salvatore are immense. My trips lately have become about goal setting, especially when it comes to a hike. The route by the locals said it was approx 2.5 hours, I crushed it in 1 hour 45.

Regardless of how long it takes you. The views are unforgettable.. There is also route for Via Ferrata, for those more experienced and wanting a challenge. I’d love to try Via Ferrata but I was warned that this route was a ‘high skilled’ route..

I didn’t use the San Salvatore funicular, but it’s worth noting it’ll save you some sore feet if you aren’t prepared!

Goal 3 – Swim in Lake Lugano

The weather was HOT. Pushing over 32 degrees, after my hike I fancied a swim, and crossing off Goal 3. Lake Lugano was surprisingly warm! The water was cleaned and clear, swimming in a lake may but be for everyone but you should try it! I used the Lido which has access to the Lake, although there is plenty of places you can get into the Lake..

With Lugano being Swiss Italian you can guarantee food to be of the best quality. Of course, I opted for another Pizza by the Lake.

Goal 4 – Eat immense Pizza

And this view was well worth waiting for..

Lugano has been a place I’ve wanted to visit for a few years. I’d recommend to anyone. You don’t have to do the hikes, you can use the funiculars. It’s very peaceful, you can swim the Lake.. it has so many options..

Lugano was done, I was headed across the border to Italy. Milano is next up.

24hrs in Montenegro

An amazing 24hrs in the Beautiful place that is Montenegro. Make this your next Destination..

So after a couple of beautiful days in Dubrovnik I was headed for the Bay of Kotor, Montenegro.

The drive from Dubrovnik to Kotor is around 90km

It’s a really simple border crossing, just remember that if you are planning to cross the border and you are using a hire car you will need a ‘Green Card‘ from the rental car company. It has all the relevant car details. Also worth pointing out that quite a few of the companies I checked didn’t allow a border cross. Goldcar allowed it, for approx £20 extra. The border crossing itself is free, but most companies hold the Green Card it seems.

FYA your phone data will be expensive here, mine was!!! I used Spotify for 3 songs.. it incurred a £42 charge – thanks Snoop Dogg. Check your network, only use Wi-Fi is my advice..

Montenegro

I got through the crossing and headed straight for the Bay. Stay on the E65 (then E80) which goes through Herceg Novi to Kotor – worth stopping at one of the supermarkets in H.N… there’s a short amount of shops from there until Kotor.

The Bay of Kotor is perfectly still in the morning

As the title says, 24hrs in Montenegro.. I was in a bit of a rush to get to Kotor. It’s really the only thing I had planned to do while here, as it was only a small amount of time.. On route I spoke and met up with my Air BnB host. I was staying in Jošice, a very quiet fishing town, where the crossing for Kotor is also available..

Jošice was perfectly located for my trip..

I have to say the cost of my Air BnB was exceptional. I paid £10 a night, and the cost would have been less if staying for more than one night! The rooms at the 4 Sailors were very good. Considering the cost I was expecting a pretty bad experience, I can only but recommend this place!

Check our the place on Air BnB; 4 Sailors

After quick hello and tour with my host I got back on the road. I’d opted against the Kotor Crossing as I wanted to explore the route around the Bay. The villages of Risan, Strp, Perast, Orahovac are pretty quiet. Most notably Orahovac, there’s a huge hotel on the Bay front which is completely baron. Pretty haunting consideing it’s location!

Perast / Sveti Dorde

A couple of lonely islands sit in the middle of the Bay, off of Perast. There’s a perfect little car park which sits opposite also. Obviously I was going to get the drone out.. there are two islands, Sveti Dorde and Ostrvo.

Just one of the reasons why I love a drone. Capturing perspectives you just wouldn’t be able to on foot
Drone. Goals

A beautiful location nestled between a mountainous Bay. Again there isn’t much here, there’s a couple of bars and restaurants down by the waterfront at Perast. I couldn’t explore this as the weather had turned and I didn’t fancy running in hail stones!

Kotor

The reason for my trip, the Ladder of Kotor. The Ladder is amazing. From the ground you can see parts of the trail but it really doesn’t take shape until you’re half way up atleast..

The base of the trail

The entrance to the Ladder is difficult to find. I had to use Google maps as the guides were all pointing me to the Fortress, which didn’t feel I had time to do! Anyway, the Ladder of Kotor..

After approx 15 mins you can see the town of Kotor around the Bay

I ploughed up the Ladder, I passed a great deal of people who were giving up and headed back down. I’m not one to be beaten, and certainly not by a trail. I cracked on. Eventually the trails become more rocky, more undulating, and more difficult to foot. Of course those sorts of things make a man think.. “the drone would be a great idea”.. I got Cameron out and captured some absolute aerial GOLD…

The zig zag trail cannot be seen in such a way without a drone. This is the reason I got a drone. Being able to capture moments which are not possible with conventional cameras.

After a quick stop for water and droning I got back on the trail. I arrived at the summit approx. 1hr 20 mins of climbing. And it was totally worth it.. Over 70 switchback turns. A real highlight of my trip..

Sony Alpha A6000 with Helios 44-2

At the top I met a girl from Holland. We sat, had a little chat about the climb. Obviously she posed for photos being a solo traveller. It was cool to chat to some else on the journey at the top of a mountain! After a bit of time spent relaxing at the summit I headed back down the mountain trail, double time. It took me just over an hour to reach the base. I think this is a given but I’d advise solid walking boots or running trainers for this trail!

It was early afternoon so I grabbed some food from the shopping centre at the base of the mountain and headed back to my car. Kotor was my main aim for this part of my trip, but with time to spare I opened up the map and decided to drive down to the coastline to the South.

Budva

Approx. 20km from Kotor. This part of my trip was a bit on the fly. First stop was a car park, views over the beaches and coastline. It was perfect for a pit stop. I checked my map for local points of interest and there were two of value to me..

Mogren Fortress

Mogren Fortress. Off the beaten track..

The fortress is well hidden, and cannot be accessed by car (I tried..). You’ll have to park the next car park in Gospostina and walk back..

Immense coastline, the colours are unedited and look stunning..

The Mogren Fortress is pretty epic. I was here for around an hour… and saw one other person. Look out for the BROWN SIGN noting ‘Tvdara Mogren’. This place was hidden and I loved that. The Mogren Fortress was built in 1860 by Austro Hungarians to defend the Western borders of Budva. Due to earthquakes and lack of up keep the fortress is falling apart so be careful.. Excursions aren’t taken here so if the goal is seclusion then this is the place. Ideal for droning…

The island of Sveti Nikola aka ‘Hawaii of Montenegro’, can be seen from the fortress. When the tide is low you can see a sand trail into Budva beach under the water. If you want to go to Sveti Nikola you can grab a boat for €3 return..

I was slowly running out of daylight. I wanted to head further round to Sveti Stefan but I didn’t have time. Budva was an extra I didn’t expect but I’m really glad I took the trip.

On my drive back I found the one restaurant which looked open, Verige 65. The food, service and restaurant itself were excellent. I spent less than €20 for a starter, main and two beers. Really great value. The restaurant over looks the Bay, with views of Tivat and Kotor.

And that was it, my 24 hours in Montenegro was close to being over. I headed back to the Air BnB to prep up for my flight the next day, back to Dubrovnik.

As ever, if you have questions on any of my travels, or Montenegro specifically then please drop me a comment or message!

My gear;

GoPro Hero 6

Sony Alpha A6000

DJI Mavic Air

The Land of Fire and Ice; Iceland

Iceland; the trip of a life time 🇮🇸

Iceland is a country I’ve wanted to visit for years now but I had always been nervous about the scale and amount of driving required.

Let’s get two things out the way immediately;

1- Iceland is expensive. Get over it.

2- The weather is changeable like you wouldn’t believe. Always check the forecast…

Anyway..

Before leaving I’d planned this trip extensively. I had 4 days so I really could only cram in the West and parts of the South. Now you can travel the ring road etc etc however you’d like, you could even hire a camper.. a good choice if there’s a few of you to split costs. I opted for an Air BnB just outside Reykjavik in Kópavogur, perfectly located to travel in all directions, and a bad ass 4×4 as I’d planned routes through the national park on F roads.

I arrived in Iceland and had pre booked a hire car with Geysir Car Rentals. Highly recommend them and the service was excellent. You get a little key fob which gives you a discount at OB fueling stations.. a nice touch.

The AWD Ford Kuga was the perfect choice for this time of year

Day One – The Golden Circle

þingvellir National Park

The huge lake of þingvellir was solid frozen which was quite a sight.. pretty much all the water I’d seen all morning was frozen.. including the sea. There was excellent walking routes here. I followed a couple of trails but was conscious of the time needed to complete the Golden Circle in one day. You have to pay to park here.. if you veer off to the right before this sign you can park for free… off-road parking though!

Viewing Gallery of the lake

Take a look around the walking routes before heading away. They can be found here

Geysir Geo Thermal Park of Haukadalut

Aerial shot of one of the Geo Thermal Pools

The Geysir is pretty cool. You can’t miss it, A) because it’s packed solid with people and cars, B) the stench of sulphur is pretty heavy. Regardless of the fumes the Geysir experience is well worth your time. The eruptions from the main Geysir are pretty large, upto 70m high. This is a no drone zone over the eruptions.. I saw 2 drones fall foul to the Geysir bursts!

The Geysir will soak you if you’re down wind. I was drenched after an eruption.. and smelt like sulphur for a few hours..

Photo hot spot, full of camera tripods and selfie stick wizards.. yes I am one of those idiots too. Hillarious to see people being battered GoPros unsuspectingly while trying to capture the eruption..

Gullfoss Falls

In a word. Epic.

In the summer you can gain access to closer areas of the Fall

The 32m drop looks huge, especially when the fall is partially frozen over. It was surprisingly quiet during my visit, I really guess it all depends on when the Golden Circle tour buses arrive..

Stunning and Iconic Waterfall

Keriđ

This place was one of my favourites. The scenic lake occupies a volcanic crater. It is around 3000 years old! And even better, the lake was frozen and you could walk over it..

The sounds of creaking and cracking ice was pretty haunting!

I walked around the lake looking for the best vantage point for the sunset. There was a massive ground of tripod raiders on the West flank.. I found a better spot..

Any wide angle lens on the North facing side will capture a sunset

The sunset from Keriđ was exceptional. I got really lucky with my timing..

After Keriđ I ended up heading back to my Air BnB in Kópavogur. If you’re doing a self drive I’d advise heading to Selfoss. There’s a few supermarket shops (and takeaways here if totally necessary!). By the time I got back to Kópavogur I was beat. I’d travelled non stop since 5am, I had a quick chat with my host and hit the hay. I had plans for a 5am start in the West..

Day Two; West Region

I headed out at 5am. A 180km route was in the sat nav. Be aware when heading North/West, Route 1 has a tunnel under the Hvalfjördur. It cost me 1000ISK each way, so about £7. Worth the cost as the drive around is an additional hour.

The drive from Reykjavik to the West was awesome. I genuinely saw no cars for miles upon miles…

You can really see the changes in weather from region to region..

The roads after Route 54 are pretty baron, untouched and icy AF. I saw three cars on the roof tops.. All non 4×4/AWD. Again I’d advise a 4×4 if you’re headed out on a self drive. After 160km I hit Kolgrafarfjödur.. I had to stop and get some shots. It was silent, so peaceful and totally epic.

Kolgrafarfjödur

The Mavic Air was the perfect drone for Iceland

At this point, this was the highlight of my Iceland trip. I couldn’t believe how beautiful it was. I’ve been to the mountains in various countries and always get that feeling of amazement, but here it was different.. I was speechless. I sat and watched over the lake and mountains eating breakfast, the perfect spot.

Kirkjufell Mountain

Approx 20km from Kolgrafarfjödur is the immense mountain of Kirkjufell. Again a real photographer hot stop however today, 6 people were here..

Some will know Kirkjufell from Game of Thrones, it features in Seasons 6 and 7.. known as Arrowhead Mountain.

Pano taken on the Mavic Air

A really impressive mountain, with a stunning backdrop. Take some time to take in the mountain, there are plenty of spots to camp of picnic here. If you need supplies there is a large shop in Grundarfjödur..

Svödufoss Waterfall

This I found by accident while travelling the Snæfellskökull peninsula coastline. Head up the track about 400m, hop out the car and walk another 200m and you’ll see the waterfall..

I was really taken back by this find. It wasn’t on my Maps during my planning so I was shocked to find it. It was difficult to see how close you could get to the fall as everything was snowy or frozen. I sent the drone out to see what the situation was, and capture some bangers of course. Well worth a stop off.

Snæfellskökull Peninsula

I continued round the coastline of Snæfellskökull. There were a couple of stop offs, there are quite a few beaches but I was unable to get down the roads due to the weather. Very gravelly roads full of ice.. I didn’t fancy a massive repair bill. Eventually I found the Malariff Lighthouse and coast line..

This is Londrangar.

Londrangar is a pair of natural towers which overlook the ocean, formed by volcanic material. The walk from Malariff will take you around 20 minutes.. maybe quicker if it isn’t icy! Excellent views out to the ocean, a real peaceful spot.

After spending some time here and at Arnarstapi (a good place to get supplies for the drive home) I headed back to Reykjavik. The coastal drive along the south peninsula of Snæfellskökull is exceptional. Non stop mountains to the left and ocean to the right for miles and miles, very cool.

Hallgrimskirkja, Reykjavik

Hallgrimskirkja is Reykjavik’s cathedral, inspired by Icelandic traditions. It can be entered and has a 70m plus tower. Tip; a good place to park after 6pm and walk into the city centre.

I can recommend a place to eat. I had a real urge for a burger after a 18 hour day.. I found the Vitabar in downtown Reykjavik (

Yeah I’ll admit it looks pretty low key from the outside but the food was awesome. Prices were very good and I thought cheap (for Iceland) a huge burger and fries with a coke set me back 3000ISK so around £20. Most places this would be 4/4500ISK. Give it a try!

Day Three; The Southern Coast

I’ve always wanted to visit locations on this leg of my tour so I was pretty excited when I set off from Kópavogur..

Seljalandfoss and Gljúfrabúi

When you pull off Route 1 for Seljalandfoss you’ll see the car park full of buses. Drive past this, there is a big lay by about 300m down the road which is free..

Seljalandfoss is stunning. I’ve seen photos of it for such a long time and they do not compare to being there and seeing the waterfall in motion. In winter when the water hits the base of the waterfall it freezes and settles as snow around the base. You will get wet it you get up close..

I stood staring at the waterfall for ages, it is pretty amazing

In months without snow it is possible to go behind the waterfall.. I was disappointed I was unable to but The entrance was frozen over!

Skógafoss

Just 24 minutes down the road is another beaut.. Skógafoss waterfall. The only difference between here and Seljalandfoss is there’s a cool staircase and viewing platform which gives off great views over the waterfall.

Go up the staircase. It is steep but worth the climb!

Tip; I returned here on my way home, Unfortunately my phone and gopro were completely dead, the moonlight shots you can get from the waterfall are class. I stood with a group of photographers who were shooting absolute gold!

Sólheimasandur DC3 Wreckage

The wreckage isn’t sign posted from what I could see.. but It is 11km from Skógafoss on the right. Now be warned, the ‘path to the DC3’ on Google doesn’t really show or tell you how far it is. I walked 30 minutes each way, in horrendous winds which were blowing people over and rain which left me soaked through.. but the end of the long walk is the wreckage. It’s pretty haunting, especially in dark wet conditions. But it’s such a cool spot..

As with most spots.. this is usually busy as hell. The weather kept people away!

Conditions were terrible…

Reynisfjara Beach

This felt like Mordor or something from Game of Thrones.. the black sand beach is both beautiful and haunting. I’ve never seen a beach like it but it given the conditions of the day it really looked moody AF! Beware on this coast, deadly seeker waves hammer this beach.. massive 20ft waves which pull people in from the coastline due to the tremendous power of the under current.

The coastline has been beaten for many years and is sculpted by the waves and winds, some of the cliff faces looking similar to the iron throne!

Day Four; The Blue Lagoon

Key piece of advice is book your tickets. There are three levels, each more expensive.. click here for details. I opted for the Comfort entry, this is ample for me. You get use of a towel, a free silca face mask, and a free drink while in the lagoon. It cost me £70, steep yes but it’s an all day ticket.

The lagoon is awesome. A totally relaxing experience. Probably the most well known spot in Iceland, yeah it’s busy but it’s pretty big that there’s room to chill out away from others.

After 4 hours in here I left, as I was driving away I spotted some non entry thermal streams..

Nature is just immense.

At this point I only had an hour before I had to be at the airport, I had one last stop.

The Bridge America

A cool geography lesson on my.last stop. This bridge connects the Eurasian and North American tectonic plates. Before the breaking of Pangaea this would have been connected.

And that was it. My Icelandic adventure was over. I had the most epic experience and I was definitely return.. I only saw a tiny bit of Northern lights and it was quite disappointing that I didn’t see the green dance.

Iceland tips;

•Waterproofs are essential

•Pretty much everywhere will accept credit or debit cards

•Book the Blue Lagoon before you travel

•Always carry water on journeys, dehydration is not joke, as I found out.

•Pick up a 12V DC car inverter. This will also you to change things like a laptop or drone.

•Also pick up a phone holder as you’ll need it for GPS.

Thanks to my Air BnB host, Floris and thanks Iceland, you’ve been incredible.

Shots taken on my GoPro Hero 6

Drone shots with the new DJI Mavic Air

Alpe D’Huez aka Powder Town

Alpe D’Huez is a resort based between 1250 / 3330meters. In the central French Western Alps, and forms part of the Isère region of Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes.. and was year’s location for our 1st Snowboarding trip of 2018

It is that time of year again..

Alpe D’Huez is a resort based between 1250 / 3330meters. In the central French Western Alps, and forms part of the Isère region of Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes.. and was year’s location for our 1st Snowboarding trip of 2018.

I’ll start off by saying, I really do love France so I’ve always wanted to hit the mountain in winter.. plus following our trip to Morzine last summer.. my mind was made up.

Morzine really convinced me to come back to France in the Winter

Now we had booked this trip before the MAMMOTH snowfall across Europe. We booked with Crystal Ski and got a great deal in the Bergers area of Alpe D’Huez, a board in board out location right next to the base lifts. Hotel Les Bergers was a decent Hotel, half board with excellent food. The location was the key point but I’d recommend staying here. We paid £800 each which included flights, transfer, lift pass and a half board hotel. Not too bad at all!

Link the image for a downloadable piste map link

Let’s talk about the Mountain.. It’s huge. No, it’s on an epic scale. Considering this is a local lift pass.. I’ve been to resorts with an Area Lift pass which are smaller!

  • 131 Pistes
  • 250km/155miles of Piste
  • Highest point 3330m
  • 41 Greens, 34 Blues, 40 Reds, 16 Blacks
  • 2 Snow Parks
  • 84 lifts (Gondola, Chair, Pomas, Cable Cars)
  • Cross Country Skiing (if that’s your thing) 50km

Obviously the first thing we did was go straight to the very top of Pic Blanc, 3330m.

Pic Blanc surrounded by snowy clouds 😍

The route down from Pic Blanc is via the famous Sarenne, a 16km Black Run. One of the world’s largest. Some would say it isn’t a true black as there are parts which become flat between cross overs but it’s pretty challenging as it can be icy and very narrow.

We hit as much of the mountain as we could. It’s near on impossible to cover every piste/untracked in 6 days but we tried. Mornings are best suited to the Signal de L’Homme over towards Auris en Oisans – grab the Alpauris chairlift. We had some much pow and some of the best of it was here.

Obviously we got to Alpe D’Huez in one of the worst snowfalls in the past 20 years. So most days were spent in low light, be prepared for such as some of the mountain when in the shade is difficult to ride. We opted for Oakley Prizm lenses which made things a lot easier..

Whiteouts were just blinding..

Best runs on the mountain?

  • Sarenne
  • Cassini
  • Chateau Noir
  • Combe Charbonnaire
  • Olympique (some excellent pow to be had through the pistes)
  • Col du Cluy
  • Les Vermettes
  • Pré Rond (Yep a blue with mega Pow because of it’s position on the mountain
  • Chamois (excellent under the gondola)

To be honest I could have listed all the Red and Black runs, the resort was decent all round!

We did have some bluebird days.. Only 1.. maybe 1 and a half. Due to the stormy weather.. but when you get this much snow.. It’s worth it..

Yes – that’s a football pitch and the snow is nearly up to the cross bar…

All in all I would come back to Alpe D’Huez. A vast resort, immense snow and beautiful views in every direction.


Some of my favourite shots from the week;


If your hitting the mountain here or have any questions about Alpe D’Huez please get in touch!

@darrens_visuals

As ever all my shots are with GoPro Hero 6 and a couple even shot with my Samsung S8.. epic camera for a Mobile Phone!

Snowy Days in Bardonecchia

Once a year it’s time… TIME TO GET IT DONE. And this was it, Bardo. Bardonecchia, Italy.

Nestled in Piedmont about an hour from Turin. I’d been here before, for my first ever snowboarding experience. This time I was returning with some friends who had never boarded..

After doing lots of travel in 2016 I decide to piece together the holiday myself.. Flights, apartment, lift passes, hire for the others, I arranged it all at a fraction of the cost to a tour operator. After toying with options and prices, it was all booked up, myself Baker,  Pledge,  and Gaz were ready to go..

Bardonecchia, Melezet, Jafferau.

A real all round gem of a resort, for all skill levels.

  • 23 ski lifts
  • Over 100km of Runs (5 black, 18 red, 16 blue)
  • 38km equipped with snow cannons
  • Snowpark
  • Snowtubing
  • Cross-country skiing
  • Ski & snowboard schools
  • First aid/medical assistance
  • Bars & restaurants on the slopes
  • Ski, snowboard & accessory hire
  • Railway station in the centre

Bardonecchia is ideally placed – the Trenitalia line runs straight into the town, and for €7 one way from Turin central station, it’s an ABSOLUTE BARGAIN. If you need advice on Travel arrangements please contact me.

This isn’t so much a travel guide this time, more photos than info.. I can’t really say much more than it’s an awesome place to learn, with spectacular views. The town of Bardonecchia is best described as sleepy.. Yes it’s very quiet. When the lifts stop running.. So does everything else. The town itself has plenty of restaurants and a couple of mini markets. I remember Tuesday night being absolutely dead at 5pm, the town was silent! Advice would be to stock up on food, bring a laptop and relax in the evening. This isn’t an a massive Aprés scene.. Which suited us because we were knackered after a solid 7-8 hours on the mountain!

I love Bardonecchia.  Great place to learn and an even better place to hone your skills. When it dumps it can go from perfect conditions to full on whiteout.. Tons of fun!

I’ll let the photos do the talking..

The very best coffees, at a shade of the cost in the UK and double the quality

The top of Monte Jafferau

Late afternoons to evenings on the mountain here can become flat looking, ensure you have the right goggles and lenses for any condition

The view from the Jafferau, stunning
The black run of the Melezet

A full a whiteout, about a foot of snow in a few hours..

Baker carving on out at Monte Jafferau

The Olympic Run at Melezet

Check out my Instagram page for more content from the trip, and take at look at the other places I’ve visited on my blog homepage..

°All photos shot using GoPro and Sandmarc accessories