Uncover the wonders of the Italian Lakes on this escorted tour through northern Italy. On this journey you’ll encounter some of the country’s most striking landscapes, its enchanting northern cities as well as visiting the crystal-clear lakes that marble the mountainous northern landscape. Not only will you see the famous three; Garda, Maggiore and Como, you’ll also have the chance to visit the smaller lesser known lakes of Orta and Lugano.
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Day 1: Fly to Verona airport where you’ll be met and transferred to your hotel in Peschiera. Take some time to settle in to your accommodation before heading down to meet your fellow travellers and tour manager for a welcome drink.
Day 2: Spend your first full day exploring the picturesque towns and magnificent scenery Lake Garda has to offer. One of the best ways to see Italy’s largest lake and the historic towns that line its shores is from the water. Enjoy a boat trip that will take you across the sparkling clear lagoon whilst you learn about its natural setting and historic sights. Cruise along the coast of the Sirmione peninsula taking time to admire the luxurious villas - including that of famed opera singer Maria Callas, watch as the thermal water bubbles from the Boiola sulphur spring and see the impressive Castle of Sirmione.
Day 3: Just a short hop away, you’ll find one of Italy’s striking northern cities, Verona. The Adige River meanders through the heart of ancient medieval city. Get to know this buzzing centre, as you walk through its winding lanes and admire the bustling piazzas. Your local guide will give you an insight to this wonderful city and its historical background.
Day 4: Today you’ll explore the enchanting archipelago city of Venice. Traverse the city and its meandering waterways like a local on the vaporetti. Your knowledgeable local guide will take you to explore the sights from the luxurious Renaissance Palazzos to the buzz of Piazza San Marco and its fascinating merchant history. Marvel at the Itali-Byzanite architecture of Saint Mark's Basilica with its beautifully sculpted teardrop domes that pierce the sky. See the luminous byzantine mosaics that date back to the 13th century as they glisten across the building’s façade. Later you’ll have time to see more of Venice at your own pace before heading back to your hotel.
Day 5: Take a break, sit back and relax whilst taking some time to enjoy your beautiful surroundings. Today marks the half way point on the trip where you’ll have the chance to spend the day at leisure.
Day 6: The journey continues towards the Varese region. On the way you’ll stop in the Lombard city of Bergamo. The lower part of the town, Città Bassa, is a modern metropolis which is in stark contrast to the upper part of the town, Città Alta, with its maze of medieval streets. Hop on the cable car that connects the two and take in the stunning views across the southern planes as your ride up. Known for its diverse architecture, here you can find impressive examples of medieval, Renaissance and Baroque styles. After your tour of the city you’ll move on to your next accommodation in Varese.
Day 7: Lake Maggoire retains the feel of the ‘Golden Age’ with its stunning villas and carefully manicured botanical Gardens. Start your day in Stresa where you can take in fantastic views of the lake. Your local guide with show you around the town, known for its thriving cultural scene. Afloat in the centre of the lake are three jewel-like islands, the Borromean Islands. Named after the aristocratic Borromean family who transformed the rocky islets into baroque botanical masterpieces. From the port at Stresa you’ll hop aboard a boat to set sail on the lake to explore the beautiful archipelago, stopping off to visit the 17th Century Palazzo Borromeo and its surrounding gardens.
Day 8: Today you’ll visit another of the region's striking lakes, Lake Como. Its meandering shoreline is surrounded by steep forested banks, dotted with beautiful ancient villages. At the southern tip of the western branch of the Y shaped lake lies the town of Como. Stroll along the waterfront promenade and visit the striking Gothic Cathedral where your local guide will give you an insight into its history and the works of art including sculptures, tapestries and paintings that the building holds. The tour will continue further north towards Tremezzo, the point where the lake branches. Here you’ll visit the elegant lake side Villa Carlotta and its botanical gardens. The manicured terraced gardens offer up an impressive display leading right down to the lake's edge.
Day 9: Lake Orta may be slightly lesser known than its neighbouring lakes, but this plays to it’s advantage. Step off well-trodden path and spend the day getting to know this enchanting Italian lake. Watch the mountains and weather patterns reflect in the tranquil silver-blue waters and visit the medieval town of Orta San Giulio. Wander through the ancient narrow streets that are dotted with churches, shops and cafes, taking your time to take in the serene atmosphere.
Day 10: Cross the Swiss boarder to Lugano. Here on the banks of Lake Lugano you’ll experience the merging of Swiss and Italian cultures. You’ll see it in the architecture, hear it in the language and taste it in the local cuisine. Visit one of the picturesque boarder towns that line the lake. On your final evening enjoy a farewell dinner in a local restaurant.
Day 11: Transfer from your hotel to Milan Malpensa airport.
- 10 nights 4* accommodation on a half board basis
- A welcome drink
- Dinner in a local restaurant
- Guided Visits to Verona, Venice, Bergamo (including cable car), Stresa/Lake Maggoire & Lake Como
- Boat trip on Lake Garda and Lake Maggiore (Borromean Islands)
- Entrance to Vittoriale degli Italiani, Saint Mark's Basilica, Palace Gardens of the Borromean Islands, Villa Carlotta and Como Cathedral
- Hotel city tax
- Extras, drinks and personal expenses
Parc Hotel - Peschiera
The Parc Hotel is nestled in the beautiful countryside of Peschiera, a perfect location for exploring the surrounding region. The simply furnished rooms provide a comfortable space to rest your head after busy days seeing the sights. Choose from one of the indoor or outdoor pools to cool off in.
Your Food: Dinner is a hot buffet service running from 6.30 pm until 8.30 pm each evening and focuses on the use of local ingredients to create a delicious and filling variety of dishes, perfect to top up your energy after a long day of activities.
Capolago Hotel - Varese
Close to the shores of Lake Verese, the Capolago Hotel offers a modern retreat where you’ll be able to relax and unwind. Its strategic location makes it a great base for exploring the region. The spacious rooms are elegantly furnished and decorated in light fresh tones creating a tranquil environment. The hotel makes sure that its guests eat well during their stay. Begin the day with a wholesome breakfast. The buffet offers a selection of sweet and savoury options including fresh seasonal fruits and home-made pastries. In the evening the restaurant serves traditional Italian cuisine made using fresh local produce.
Your Food: The dinner is with a 3-course-set menu, with water and tea or coffee included.
- 30 May 2020
- 06 & 20 Jun 2020
- 12 Sep 2020
Maximum Group Size: 26
Our tours are subject to minimum numbers and with that in mind the tours and their itineraries may be subject to change. Where this becomes necessary, and where practicable, we will take the steps as outlined in clause 5 of our terms and conditions.