Road Trip Palma de Mallorca to Zürich
There are several ways to reach the mainland from Mallorca and we chose the night ferry Trasmeditarranea from Palma to Barcelona.
The ferry is not a large vessel and the boarding is quick and efficient. The cabins are small but clean and have a shower & toilet.
We arrived early Sunday morning in Barcelona and because of the little traffic in the early hours we could swiftly leave Barcelona and head to towards France.
On our way to Marseille we stopped in Sausset Les Pins by the sea, a beautiful little town by the coast. There was a small market and some cosy little restaurants. We had booked a table in Les Girelles, a typical French Restaurant direct by the Sea. Excellent cuisine and a perfect spot for a bite to eat.
It took us about 45 minutes from Sausset to Marseille, we took the route along the coast instead of heading back to the highway. A beautiful route along the coast into Marseille. Marseille, the second largest city in France has a wonderful old port and many old houses. Sadly a lot of them need to be restored, but the money is lacking.
We booked ourselves a room in the Intercontinental Hotel Dieu. We strolled around the old Port from Marseille and found that many restaurants near the Port had already closed in the evening, I assume because it’s still beginning of the season. We found a really nice small Bistrot l’Horologe, a quirky restaurant with a tinny kitchen and delicious food.
The next day we left for Italy, we took the motorway instead of driving along the Cote Azure what we normally do when we have plenty of time to travel. A stop in Villefranche sur Mer is a must if you fancy a bit of lunch. There are plenty of pretty restaurants that serve excellent fish dishes along the town’s coastline.
We headed straight to Italy and once off the motorway we entered the beautiful region of Piedmont. Some of the villages where like little ghost towns, closed down factories and homes left abandon.
As we where getting peckish we stopped in Barolo for a small aperitif… the sparkling wine in Barolo was a delight! … and the salami and cheese just scrumptious. Barolo it self is very pretty and at this time of year very quite… that was very pleasant.
It took us about 30 minutes to reach Guarene, a pretty village with lots of small lanes and streets. Situated on top was our next destination, Castello di Guarene, a luxury Hotel. We can highly recommend staying here; it is a magnificent castle with lots of history. The cuisine in the Restaurant was fabulous, local Italian dishes cooked to perfection and of course a huge wine list!
Unfortunately we had to leave the next day to continue our trip back to Zürich. The whole trip took us 3 nights and 3 days… obviously you can take the short cut and take the ferry in the evening and head straight up thru France and cross the border to Switzerland in Geneva and head to Zürich within 10 ½ hours driving time.
Our next trip will take us back to Mallorca, but this time thru France. We shall then cross the sea at Toulon to Alcudia!
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Details to our stops are listed below:
Hotel: Intercontinental Hotel Dieu
Dinner: L' Horologe, Marseille
Hotel: Castello di Guarene