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Monday 30th August 2004
Villafranca to Borghetto nr Valeggio

Just a short ride planned for today – originally we were going to stay two nights in the same place and recover from the long trip out, but we hadn’t quite made our aiming point yesterday.  We had our breakfast at 8 which consisted of 2 cups of coffee, 2 pain-au-chocolat or similar and 1 croissant (between the two of us!) – I have a feeling we will have to get used to small breakfasts.  We soon found the tourist information in Valeggio and were recommended about 6 places – mainly B&B.  We opted for one in Borghetto less than 2 miles away on the river Mincio which is a tributary of the Po.   It has a very old 14th century bridge spanning the river and the town is very picturesque.   We cycled to the B&B and accommodation was sorted by 9.30am for the night.   We then cycled back into Valeggio and bought food for lunch before entering the Parco Giardino Sigurta – a large park on a hill overlooking the Mincio with cycle tracks and gardens and fish and turtle ponds.   It also has golf buggies, which you can self drive, or bikes to hire.   We spent most of the day here, looking round and just being lazy.   There were lovely views of the river below us.

At 4.30 we returned to the B&B to shower – we were very hot and sticky. We also investigated the cycle path alongside the Mincio which leads to Mantua – the surface looked good so we decided to use it tomorrow.  Then in the evening we walked the two hundred meters into the centre of the village to find a restaurant to celebrate our 35th wedding anniversary.   We realized we needed to work on our Italian because the meal we had was not what we were expecting – it was a bit like a fourth course of cheese, with jam (Christine) and with tomato (Tony) – but the scenery sitting alongside the river and the occasion made up for the absence of the other three courses!   It cost us €27 which included wine – a trifle expensive.

Mileage today 15.8.  Total 44.4

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