1. Hey everyone, We’re going to start a weekly email to surface interesting threads in the forums. No worries, you can easily unsubscribe if you don’t find it interesting. If you’re like me, it’s nice to have someone willing to poke around a big community like ours and find the most interesting stuff. Saves time and I hate missing something great. It worked really well when we had someone discovering the best photos for the home page rotation back in the day. And if you have something fascinating to post, maybe this email does everyone some good by getting it noticed. Let us know what you think when you get it. Your feedback will make it better as we go (thread). Thanks! Baldy & rudy1220
    Dismiss Notice

Looking for routing advice from Milan (Linate Airport) to Menaggio

Discussion in 'EMEA' started by DMCaton, Jul 29, 2018.

  1. DMCaton

    DMCaton Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Oddometer:
    162
    Location:
    Fenton, MO
    My wife and I are traveling to Italy in early September and are renting a Hyperstrada near the Linate Airport in Milan to ride to and spend the night in Menaggio, then return to Milan the following afternoon. We are getting the bike at 9:30 am Saturday and have to return it Sunday evening. We will be 2 up and loaded with gear for the week so a little gravel is ok but nothing too gnarly and we would prefer pavement for this trip. I'd love to bring my WR250R and explore the mountains on it... but that's going to have to be another trip.

    Looking at Google Maps it seems hard to make a wrong turn anywhere in the area once you're out of
    Milan. The ideas I have so far are:

    Trip there:
    1) SS470 to SP1 to SP8 to Morbegno, then SS340dir to follow the lake down to Menaggio
    or 2) SS470 to Bianco, then SP25 to SP64 to SP62 to Varenna and catch the ferry across to Menaggio

    Return trip:
    1) Ferry to Bellagio (we might be here already to see the sights), then either follow the lake down to Milan (is the east or west side better?) or cut through the mountains?
    or 2) SS340 to Como, then the A9 back into Milan

    Option 1's: https://goo.gl/maps/1cyUHw54T1B2
    Option 2's: https://goo.gl/maps/XooHeJZxevL2

    I'm leaning towards option #1 for both directions, but am definitely open to suggestions! Bonus points for must-do's in Cinque Terre and/or Rome as that's where we're headed next (but no bike after returning to Milan).
    #1
  2. glitch_oz

    glitch_oz Long timer

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,805
    Location:
    AUS
    Just a few things to keep in mind...
    The North Italian Plains are Italy's industrial heartland and are well known for their smog, particularly that time of year.
    Go for height! Up into the mountains and out of the smog and often stifling heat.

    With the assumption that your pillion doesn't get bends-sick and can handle tight, tight and steep, narrow roads
    here's a quick map of some choice backroads I would take for a 2-day Milano->Milano ride.
    (choose the AutoStrada for faster access if you like)

    1) https://goo.gl/EqjexY 175k's gets you a bag of tight backroads stuff through highly scenic and idyllic villages away from the tourist stream.
    No dirt that I can remember, but views to die for. It's all slow stuff...work on covering about 25-30mph incl. foto-stops/ coffees/lunch etc
    I'd stay in a village up the slopes from Lago d'Iseo somewhere.
    Something with good, local food, a terrace overlooking valleys and mountains, a bottle of red, some prosciutto and goat cheese...
    Somewhere along the SP60/61/ or 294

    2) This one is the clincher!
    Maniva and Vivione :-)
    2 prime, alpine single-laners
    All steeper/ tricky stuff is sealed.
    But they're TIGHT!
    Lunch at the lake...with a relaxed bimble down the 'Strada back to the airport. ~240k's https://goo.gl/PzmqNZ
    Keep some small change handy for the toll-gates.

    Rome and CT? No ideas, not my kind of places. ;-)
    #2
    stokerel and DMCaton like this.
  3. DMCaton

    DMCaton Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Oddometer:
    162
    Location:
    Fenton, MO
    Thank you for the input! As much as I'd love to head farther northwest into the Alps unfortunately my better half has her heart set (and an airBNB already booked) on staying in Menaggio and doing some exploring of the towns around Lake Como. I am already planning another more bike-focused trip back to explore the mountains some more so I will save your route for then! The street-views of those roads look amazing :tb I also wanted to ride Sardinia on this trip but that got cut too... Next time!

    We'll make sure to keep some change for tolls. I had no idea about the smog, hopefully it's not too bad while we're there that would be a shame.
    #3
    glitch_oz likes this.
  4. glitch_oz

    glitch_oz Long timer

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2006
    Oddometer:
    2,805
    Location:
    AUS
    Happy wife, happy life :-)
    I'd hoped you'd be checking some of the street-view along those routes....also hope that the smog stays in check this season.
    It's a real issue in the more low-laying areas like the Lakes-district, Aosta Valley and Liguria/ lower Trentino.


    Happy miles :clap
    #4
  5. MichaelJ

    MichaelJ Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2003
    Oddometer:
    4,219
    Location:
    Sterling, Virginia, USA
    My experience is that west side tends to be very trafficky - the east side much less so.


    Vivione

    [​IMG]

    For scale:

    [​IMG]
    #5
  6. nickguzzi

    nickguzzi Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Oddometer:
    5,960
    Location:
    below the sea
    There are worse places to hang out. The guzzi factory will be closed on Saturday (if that is when you said you would be there), but you can go and look at Agostini's.
    If you are there in the am, there is a nice little pasticceria - Amerigo Di Aleppi Elena E Michele for those nice mouthfuls of sweet of savoury. Top of Via Alessandro Manzzoni on the Piazza della Repubblica.

    The villages up the side of the lake are cute, although Lecco is now a big town. There are other much smaller places if you turn off the lake side "main" road.

    I was all round there in late November a year or so ago, weather was hot enough. Although any place with adjacent mountains will have the ever present possibility of rain.
    #6
  7. DMCaton

    DMCaton Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Oddometer:
    162
    Location:
    Fenton, MO
    This is exactly the info I was looking for, thank you!

    I totally didn't even realize that was there! Too bad we'll be there on a weekend (Google tells me they're closed on Sundays too) but I'll make a mental note to check it out if we happen to be in the area again. We'll make sure to stop in at Agostini's and Amerigo Di Aleppi Elena E Michele if we pass through Mandello del Lario.
    #7
    nickguzzi likes this.
  8. nickguzzi

    nickguzzi Long timer

    Joined:
    Feb 17, 2010
    Oddometer:
    5,960
    Location:
    below the sea
    The museum is actually in the factory and hence has over the years kept strange hours, always check the website before making a long trip.
    #8
  9. MichaelJ

    MichaelJ Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2003
    Oddometer:
    4,219
    Location:
    Sterling, Virginia, USA
    Further up the east side of Como in the town of Colico is the Ristorante da Lin - a Chinese restaurant. Dragons, red & gold decor, Chinese staff, the whole bit. The best pizza that I've had in Italy to date. Go figure. :eek7
    #9
  10. DMCaton

    DMCaton Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Oddometer:
    162
    Location:
    Fenton, MO
    Not what I'd expect from a Chinese restaurant, but we both do love pizza so I think we'll have to check it out!
    #10
  11. MichaelJ

    MichaelJ Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2003
    Oddometer:
    4,219
    Location:
    Sterling, Virginia, USA
    On the left, as you head north.

    Da Lin.jpg
    #11
    DMCaton likes this.
  12. IT Hunter

    IT Hunter Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 4, 2017
    Oddometer:
    41
    Ok, still in time to help you, if needed, I'm from Milan, feel free to contact me.

    You wrote:" a little gravel is ok but nothing too gnarly and we would prefer pavement for this trip." Well, difficult or better impossible to find some gravel road in all Northern Italy following the normal roads.
    #12
    DMCaton likes this.
  13. IT Hunter

    IT Hunter Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 4, 2017
    Oddometer:
    41
    Not so far from Menaggio, going South to Milan, there is Argegno, it is a start of a road that climb to Rifugio Venini, 1600m above sea level, with a fantastic scenery on Como lake. The Rifugio Venini is fantastic also for the food that they serve. It can be interesting also for the IWW defensive operas still existing.

    I don't know the time when the Motorbicyle must be returned, but a pair of hours to get back to Linate are enough.
    #13
    DMCaton likes this.
  14. MichaelJ

    MichaelJ Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2003
    Oddometer:
    4,219
    Location:
    Sterling, Virginia, USA
    Grazie!
    #14
  15. IT Hunter

    IT Hunter Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 4, 2017
    Oddometer:
    41
    Well, MichelJ, prego, it is one of my next targets, I've been there two or three times with my Toyota Land Cruiser, but I would like to do it by motorbike, but not alone.
    #15
  16. DMCaton

    DMCaton Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jan 21, 2013
    Oddometer:
    162
    Location:
    Fenton, MO
    I googled Rifugio Venini and that view is amazing! The wife was really wanting somewhere with a good view of the lake and it sounds like this provides just that! Is there anything specific you'd recommend on the menu? Lunch or dinner?
    #16
  17. IT Hunter

    IT Hunter Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 4, 2017
    Oddometer:
    41
    Furthermore, I would prefer foreign guests to know local Italian foods rather than a Chinese pizzeria.

    Something like Mocetta, a local way to prepare dry meat, the local cheese and the pizzoccheri, a very rich preparation made with a special type of pasta, cheese, potatoes and other components.

    Italy is not only pizza and spaghetti and something else.
    DeGaulle was used to say that was very difficult to manage a country where 70 different cheese were poduced, Italy has many more of 70 type of cheese. And not only cheese.
    #17
    DMCaton and glitch_oz like this.
  18. IT Hunter

    IT Hunter Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 4, 2017
    Oddometer:
    41
    Lunch on the terrace is fantastic, but this means to forget wine for the driver. It is possible to sleep at the rifugio, but you will have a little room and the shared bathroom with the other guests.

    In my previous intervention my suggestions.
    #18
  19. MichaelJ

    MichaelJ Long timer

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2003
    Oddometer:
    4,219
    Location:
    Sterling, Virginia, USA
    I just watched a video of a GoldWing making it up there with no issues. Looks like only the last few hundred meters are gravel - and very polite graved at that.
    #19
  20. IT Hunter

    IT Hunter Adventurer

    Joined:
    May 4, 2017
    Oddometer:
    41
    It is, but after the rifugio, the military road that continue to North on the border with Switzerland, where fortifications of Cadorna line are, but It is an easy dirty road.
    #20