Stinky Cheese & Climbing Mountains: Lake Como, Italy

Last month we were able to meet up with a couple of friends from Charleston visiting Italy on vacation. This was our first first trip outside of Hungary!


Unfortunately Chris’s mission was delayed so we could only spend one full day there (luckily we got there super early the day before and left really late the day after). It was awesome to see Heather and Karl. Its weird to go from living across the street to living across an ocean.

We took a super cheap flight from Budapest to Milan, then a train to Lake Como, and a bus into Malpensa. Or as I like to say, an excuse to reference Planes, Trains, and Automobiles all day.



We met at a super cute cafe/bar and I hugged Heather in the middle of the street, but luckily we weren’t hit by any passing cars. Spoiler alert but Il Baretto will show up later in the blogpost.

Their air b&b was AMAZING but literally at the top of a mountain (okay maybe not a mountain, but a super tall hill) that was the steepest incline ever–even more than the Heidelberg Castle we climbed on New Years–but the view from the house made the sweaty, swearing, trip up the stone steps totally worth it.



We were greeted by their Keanu list (absent is Chris’s personal favorite, Johnny Mnemonic so we’ll need an updated list in the next few months).


Before climbing the big hike to the house, we stopped at a little store in town and bought some local super stinky cheese, bread, and wine, then spent the day playing games before going to dinner.


This dinner was out. of. control. The restaurant didn’t give us menus but just brought their specials for the day. Definitely in my top five favorite meals of all time and #1 in Europe so far. I forgot to take pictures because I was too busy dying (remember in the first post I said how bad I was at taking food photos?) but it was an amazing combination of bread/cheese/vegetables/sauces/pasta (and meat, but I can’t attest to how great that was). We also had an awesome dessert of sorbet and tiramisu.

Sunday we went to Lake Como by ferry, wandered around, and discussed fantasy football (Chris and I were playing each other this week!)




Chris talking shit.

Making the long ass trek down to the water.


Reunited and it feels so good. Sorry for the shit quality but I was taking pictures secret-style.


Waiting for the ferry.






After pizza and gelato we took a cab back to Maltrasio where we stopped at Il Baretto for drinks. We watched soccer, talked about football, and had shots on the house (“this one is for Keanu!”). While a good idea at the time, this made the 400-ish ft vertical walk up to the house both difficult and hilarious.

We also met the Italian HCB Mr. Meowgi. Poor guy had an eye infection 😦 He was so sweet and joined us on the porch our last morning in Italy.


Luckily we were able to take a late flight back to Hungary so we were able to hang out most of the day. More pizza, more foosball tournaments (“LEGS UP!”), and Heather and I delivered a thank you letter (in Italian!) to our favorite people at Il Baretto.


Bye Italy, It’s been real.


Who needs a selfie stick when you have a friend like Kombat Karl?


❤ Ashlyn


2 thoughts on “Stinky Cheese & Climbing Mountains: Lake Como, Italy

  1. Barbara Orr says:

    Ciao Bella! How great to reconnect with friends in such a beautiful place! The pizza looked great. What kind of pasta did you have? Have fun and make your memories now.

    Liked by 1 person

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