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An Unexpected Mountain Village Near Vogogna, Italy

“I have always been delighted at the prospect of a new day,
a fresh try,
one more start,
with perhaps a bit of magic waiting somewhere behind the morning.”
J. B. Priestley

Thank you so much for the kindness, hugs and support you gave me yesterday.  Just sharing my burden with you made it lighter, and I can face this next round of tests with greater strength and courage. XO

Now let us set aside all thoughts of proddings and pokings and return to the village of Vogogna, Italy where (last week) we explored the medieval Visconti Castle.

Just past this imposing edifice is a bumpy stone trail that wends along behind the castle, over a bridge, and past a small stone cottage.

It is not possible, for me at least, to see such a trail and not feel compelled to follow it. Thankfully such notions also appeal to my English friend Katy, so we gamely set off for parts unknown to see what we could see.

Clad in breezy sundresses and strappy sandals we didn’t look even remotely like mountain climbers, but such trifles are not to be considered when there are adventures to be had.

So up we went the increasingly steep trail, treading carefully on stones worn smooth by countless trekkers.

We passed abandoned stone huts overgrown with vines and bushes, sun-dappled rock walls, and berries, ferns and tiny flowers in the underbrush.

As we trekked higher up the mountain, it felt like we had inadvertently stepped into an Italian version of Heidi.

“Are you tired, Heidi?” Deta asked the child.
“No, but hot,” she replied.
“We shall be up in an hour, if you take big steps and climb with all your little might!
Johanna Spyri, Heidi

And we did. 🙂

We stopped often to catch our breath, finding shady spots to rest and visit, turning our heads to catch glimpses of the hazy valley and smoky mountains behind us.

Our legs were burning and lungs bursting when we trudged around a corner and gaped in wonder at a beautiful little mountain village that seemingly appeared out of nowhere: Genestredo.

There were no voices, no slamming of doors or static from a radio.

No people or dogs or vehicles and the only sounds were morning birdsong and the gurgle of water from the village spring.

I don’t know where the inhabitants were, but you could see their mark in tidy courtyards and flower pot lined balconies.

Awash in sunshine and void of noise, the village was indescribably peaceful.

We loved it, and happily wandered the deserted streets dreaming up all sorts of stories about the people who called this tiny place home.

I especially wanted to know who lived in this beautiful stone house with its weathered shutters and overflowing window boxes.

Can’t you imagine flinging open the windows on fine days and leaning out on your elbows to take in views of towering peaks and ancient ruins? Or perhaps sitting on that old bench with a dear friend, nattering about the day and watching the townsfolk pass by?

Sigh. Tis a lovely thing to imagine. 🙂

Next time we’ll continue our trek up the mountain and explore the ruins of an Italian medieval fortress: the Rocca.

Wishing you a beautiful weekend.


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Krista - Thank you, Cathy! Maybe one day we’ll get to meet up and hike through Italy too. 🙂

Krista - I know just what you mean, Kate! 🙂 It’s so hard to capture the feel of a place sometimes. 🙂

Krista - I have no idea, Donna! The only thing I can guess is that they went down to the valley to work during the day?

Krista - How wonderful to bike through the Loire Valley, Velva. 🙂

Krista - A sundress in the sun sounds like absolutely bliss, Abby! 🙂

Krista - I’m so glad they delight you so much too, Bethany. 🙂 XO

Krista - Thank you so much, Bethany. 🙂

Krista - Thank you, T!! 🙂

Krista - Thank you, holiday nomad. 🙂

Krista - Thank you so much, dear Valerie! I’m SO happy your new site is up! I will head over there shortly to look at it. 🙂

Krista - Thank you, Joanne. 🙂 It certainly does help to think about this place. 🙂

Krista - LOL! Yes, I have slept in a hayloft and once you get hay in your pjs the fantasy ends. 🙂

Krista - Isn’t it amazing how a place can have such strong “belonging” memories. 🙂

Krista - I’m bummed you missed it too, Tuula! One day we WILL meet up. 🙂

Krista - Thanks so much, Kim! I hope you are able to visit here one day. 🙂

Krista - Thank you so much, dear Ozoz. 🙂 XO

Krista - Mmm, me too, Marie. 🙂

Krista - it IS so strange, Jeanne! 🙂 Once I even heard a radio playing but not a single sign of humanity. 🙂

Jeanne Horak - Oh how gorgeous! The wild strawberries remind me of a summer holiday in the mountains above Chamonix – paradise. Isn’t it strange how often when you are travelling you come across a place that seems to have NO inhabitants at all – I mean, where do they go when the travellers arrive?!

Marie - Love stone houses and cobbled paths. Just lovely.

Kitchen Butterfly - You have a great ability to travel and to take us with you Krista. Love the photos and glad you’re feeling better. Lots of love

Margo Millure - I want to go back here every day of my life 🙂

TuulaR - Simply gorgeous! Still so bummed I missed this trip…but what a great excuse to go back to Italy! Thanks for sharing your beautiful photos with us… xo

Kim Kelly - Oh my goodness what gorgeous photos!! My husband and I discovered similar villages on our trip last year, but I’m putting this one down as a place not to miss. Thank you so much for the post!

mlleparadis@hotmail.com - i do have that heidi fantasy too. mr. paradis thinks that sleeping in a hayloft might be where that fantasy comes to a full stop! anyway, this post is a DREAM!

hang in there with that poking and prodding sweetie! hoping for the best for you.

Joanne (eats well with others) - Just picture all of this beautiful scenery while they’re prodding and poking and I’m sure you’ll be just fine!! Thinking about you!

A Canadian Foodie - You have a beautiful knack of capturing the most incredible images and creating a lovely quiet reprieve within each of your posts, Krista! Did you see my new site? The width of the pictures within each post are definitely inspired by you!

Bethany Miller - How beautiful- the story, the path, the pictures, ~everything! Thanks for the reverie!

Ulysses S. Rant - Beautiful pics, K.

www.holidaynomad.com - looks lovely and very relaxing

Danielle - I love it! 🙂

Bethany Bassett - That is GORGEOUS! I wouldn’t have been able to resist climbing it either, and even after five years in Italy, I still can’t get enough of the tiny mountain villages sprinkled around. I don’t think *fifty* years would be sufficient. 🙂 I hope so much that your medical tests are going better than hoped, or at least that you can have some relief from pain today. Much love.

Abby Tegnelia - This truly looks like a dream, all of that greenery and charm. Especially as I am gearing up for colder weather, I would love to be in a sundress basking in the sun!

Velva-Tomatoes on the Vine - Awesome! Love villages like this one. I can remember biking in the Loire Valley and coming across villages that looked desolate but beautiful. Where were the inhabitants!

Beautiful, beautiful place.

Donna Hull - You’ve left me curious. Where were the inhabitants? The village looks almost like a ghost town. Lovely photos.

Kate Bailward - How gorgeous. I love these little mountain villages that you find in Italy. Actually, I just love mountains generally. I love the way they fade from black to purple to misty lavender in the distance and I wasted rolls and rolls of film (yes, I’m that old) on trying to capture those colours perfectly in Nepal. Sadly I didn’t manage it, but I can still look at the prints today and remember just what they *should* look like, so all was not lost. 🙂

Have a wonderful weekend. xx

Cathy - And a beautiful weekend to you too Krista. I love how you explored this trail with Katy in sundresses and sandals 🙂 That farmhouse is just so beautiful.

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