The main purpose of my trip to Italy this time round was to hike in the Dolomites. My brother and his wife were staying in Cortina d'Ampezzo and had invited me (well, actually, I invited myself) to join them. And, back in May, when I saw the price of train tickets to Milan, I bought them straight away. Train travel is relatively easy in Italy, and I figured I could work out the rest later.
Train travel is easy in Italy. Unfortunately, Cortina doesn't have a train station.
In high season, travelling to Cortina is not actually that difficult. Calalzo, the nearest railway station, is connected to Cortina by a shuttle bus, and there are long-distance coaches from Milan, Venice. Bologna and Padova. Unfortunately, while the transport network is very efficient, the websites which supply this information are not. But after a lot of digging around on the internet, I devised a 27-hour itinerary that took me from Paris to Milan, from Milan to Mestre, from Mestre to Treviso and from Treviso to Cortina.
And so it was that I found myself spending the night in Treviso.
http://www.hostelworld.com/. Having dropped off my bags, I had a few hours to explore the city before bedtime.
Treviso is a very pretty little city, although I suspect there isn't much there to occupy visitors for any great length of time. The old town is surrounded by a very clean, very green looking river and fortified by city walls. I found my way to the centre, where, in the main square, I happened to stumble upon a show that was being put on by the local dance schools, so I sat outside on a terrace to watch as I had my tea.
I don't know a lot about dance, but the performances looked pretty good to me. What was strange, however, was being there all by myself. It was one of those occasions where all the local people turn out with their families, chat to their friends and run into everybody else that they know, and where the socialising is as important as the show. I love those evenings in Italy, because Italians do them better than anybody else.
But it made me feel glad that I was meeting my own family the next day. Italy isn't a place to be alone for too long.