“Day 1: The Maiden Voyage – From Dawn to Dusk in Italy’s Embrace”

There’s something magical about the world just before dawn. The stillness, the promise of a new day, and the gentle whisper of night giving way to morning. It was in this enchanting hour that my journey began. My Skoda Yeti, packed and primed, rumbled to life, echoing my own heart’s eager beat.

The Italian highway stretched ahead, an endless ribbon of possibilities. But this day, it was also a river of vehicles, flowing with the intensity of the summer sun. The heavy traffic acted as a formidable adversary, slowing me down, testing my patience. Every kilometer, every turn held a story, a challenge. But the Alpine dream beckoned, and I pressed on.

Morning view of our Velebit at the start of my trip

As the kilometers whizzed past, so did the hours. Despite my heart’s longing to stop, to breathe in the nuances of the journey, the clock’s relentless march and the need to reach my destination ensured my halts were minimal. In total, the day saw me navigate over 900 km in a marathon 13-hour drive.

The sun, as if in solidarity with my endeavor, blazed in the sky, casting temperatures around a sweltering 35°C. The Skoda’s air conditioning was a balm, but every time I stepped out, the Italian summer greeted me with its fierce embrace.

Finally, as evening hues began to paint the sky, I arrived at my sanctuary for the night – a serene camping site not far from the bustling port city of Genoa. With the hum of the highway fading behind, the tranquility of the site was a welcome reprieve. Each rustle of the leaves, each chirp of the evening birds seemed to whisper tales of adventures yet to unfold.

First night, camping at nice campsite Federico Farm

While today was largely about the road, tomorrow holds a promise of magic. Nearby lies a location I’ve dreamt of capturing, and I intend to be there early, with the first rays of dawn. The allure of what’s to come demands I be well-rested, and after today’s marathon, my body wholeheartedly agrees.

So, as the canvas of the night envelops the world, I bid you all a good night. Tomorrow beckons, and with it, stories and sights that I cannot wait to share. Until then, dream of Alpine majesties and Italian sunrises. We have only just begun.