After staying in France for a bit over two months, we decided to hit the road and make our way to Italy.
We were told that the 40 minute train ride from Embrun to Briancon was much more scenic than the road so there was no hesitation when we decided to do just that. I didn’t mind avoiding a few mountains… It really was a scenic and picturesque ride and made me think I really want to come back here in the winter and ski! I’m sure it’d be quite expensive but the mountains are just beautiful there!
Arriving in Briancon, we got some lunch to fuel our bodies for the big climb to Italy. From where we were to a little town in Italy called Oulx, was a 36 km road where half of the road goes up, up, up to Montgenevre and then the other half of the way is a cruise downhill. The worst part for me riding up towards the mountain was that you could see the mountain covered in zig zags going up and up and up. I really didn’t think that I could do it. But! We actually rode all the way without even stopping to push our bikes 🙂
The top of the hill was about 2000m high and it’s crazy how fast the weather changed. It was 30 degrees at the bottom and reaching the top we were met with a chilly 18 degrees! We hadn’t been that cold since riding in England!
As soon as we passed the Italia sign, we went through about 5 tunnels that went through the mountains and enjoyed the 18km downhill ride to Oulx. There were no signs for the train station so we stopped and asked a guy for directions who just said to follow him! It was about a ten minute walk out of his way, which was really sweet of him to do.
After not being able to find the campsite in Turin we had intended to get to because both of our phones had died, we checked into a hotel! Our first one since London, but this time we even got a bathroom in our room haha. Pure luxury. Well, it was to us compared to camping haha. We had forgotten what it was like to have a comfy bed, pillows, free toilet paper, soap and towels and even not wearing thongs in the shower! It felt so good we went back downstairs and booked to stay another night!
I really wanted to see how Kel would like the pizza in Italy because for me, the best pizza I have tasted (and pasta) is here in Italia! We ventured into the night quite exhausted, and had some pizza at a restaurant nearby. It was delicious! We spent the next couple of days exploring Turin which is a pretty city.
We found a campsite abut 15km away from Turin and the bonus was it had a big gelato factory 500m away! It was only 2 euros for 2 flavours and was so yummy! We went with a German couple who were travelling on motorbikes around France and Italy for a few weeks in their uni break.
It was quite sad saying bye to France. We really loved our time there and will be back for sure. We were shown so much hospitality and made some lifelong friends.
A bientot France… Buongiorno Italia!