Town of Varenna on Lake Como

Italian Lakes Walking Tour around Lake Como and Lake Iseo

RoseThis luxurious walking tour takes in the delights of Lake Como with its lush garden and chic villas, as well as the quiet beauty of the lesser known Lake Iseo on this walking tour in the region of Lombardy in northern Italy.  Follow the greenway or an ancient wayfarer’s path with the best views of Lake Como, take a ferry to the tiny island of Monte Isola on Lake Iseo for an off-the-beaten path guided walking tour

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Trip Length 7 days
Walking Level Easy to Moderate
Trip Cost $5680

Walking Levels

Our walks are rated for their level of difficulty as follows:

  • Stroll – Daily distance of 2-5 km (1-3 miles) through archeological sites and in towns with stone stairways. Footwear: Lightweight walking shoes.
  • Easy – Daily distance of 8-10 km (5-7 miles) on dirt paths and gravel roads, with short ascents & descents. Good van access for assistance along the route. Footwear: Sturdy walking shoes.
  • Moderate – Daily distance of 12-16 km (8-10 miles) with longer ascents & descents. May include cobblestone paths and steps, or narrow paths along terraced hillsides. Some van access or options for shorter walks. Footwear: Sturdy walking shoes or lightweight boots.
  • Fitness – Daily distance of 12-16 km (8-10 miles) with steep ascents & descents. Walks are at altitudes of 1200-2450 meters (3500-8000 feet) on trails and forest service roads, some rocky or exposed sections. Limited van access, options for shorter or longer routes. Footwear: Lightweight boots.
Pizzoccheri pasta dish

We’ll stay in small luxury hotels with the best lake view rooms and walk along ancient wayfarer’s pathways that connect rustic villages, as well as  explore the lush gardens of Lake Como near George Clooney’s villa.  The undiscovered beauty of Lake Iseo with its delightful car-free island in the middle of the lake offers the perfect escape for exploring on foot, while the cuisine ranges from the rustic to the sublime.  Enjoy simple lunches of stone-ground polenta topped with wild mushrooms or traditional taragna cheese, to sublime lakeside dinners of freshly-caught perch and creamy risotto. We’ve scouted out the best authentic dishes that are bound to surprise you, all perfectly paired with the rich wines of nearby Valtellina.

Trip Highlights

  • Relax in stunning lakeside hotels and relish the ever-changing light on the lakes from your room or the hotel’s romantic gardens and terraces, and revel in the best lake views on our daily walks
  • Enjoy the lush landscape of  lavish villas and sumptuous gardens on Lake Como and keep your eye out for George Clooney, visit chic Bellagio and admire the stunning Villa Melzi
  • Walk in the footsteps of the ancient Romans along a wayfarer’s path, follow a cobblestone mule track to a hilltop abbey, and taste rustic polenta and artisanal cheeses aged in mountain grottos
  • Explore Lake Iseo on foot with its colorful towns and car-free island in the middle of the lake, and immerse yourself in an Italian-style vacation with traditional food and great regional wines

Trip Details

Dates
October 1-7, 2019

Meet
Milan train station

End
Brescia train station

Single Supplement
$950 USD

Meals
Daily breakfast
6 lunches with wine
5 dinners with wine

Maximum Participants
12

Accommodations
Signature

Itinerary
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Day-by-Day Itinerary

Italian Lakes Placeholder
Italian Lakes

Day 1-3

Lake Como.  Meet at the Milan Centrale train station and travel to the delightful town of Varenna on the shores of Lake Como, where we stay for 3 nights in a villa hotel with lakeview rooms and a sumptuous garden.  We’ll spend our time on Lake Como walking in the footsteps of the ancient Romans along a wayfarer’s path, or exploring the lush gardens and lavish villas that dot Lake Como.  We’ll use ferries to crisscross the lake to get to the best trails and prettiest towns, and visit Bellagio with its chic lakefront and grand gardens.

Day 4-6

Lake Iseo. After a final spectacular walk overlooking Lake Como, transfer to the delightful small town of Sulzano on the shores of idyllic Lake Iseo, where we enjoy staying in  spacious rooms with sweeping lake views for 3 nights.  Take a boat excursion to Montisola, literally a mountain island in the middle of the lake, graced with one of the prettiest villages in Italy.  No cars are permitted on the island – only the local bus – so it is a lovely quiet place for a circular walk around the island, or for the energetic, a climb to the 600 meter high summit. Enjoy a hearty lunch of pizzoccheri made with buckwheat pasta, and finish off  with the local delicacy called fritulì, a kind of sweet apple fritter. Other walks explore the colorful towns along Lake Iseo and follow the historic Valnerina pathway, once the route of the transumanza, when livestock were brought to and from grazing pastures according to the season. Strong culinary traditions of making artisanal cheeses  and salami still exist, along with unusual dishes of lake fish and polenta, and are complemented by a delectable variety of wines from the nearby vineyards of Lombardy.

Day 7

Transfer to the Brescia train station for trains to Milan.  We are planning an optional walking tour of Milan focusing on Leonardo da Vinci, and hope to view the Last Supper painting, but it is still too early to reserve entrance.  We’ll keep you posted on this fascinating option as tickets become available.  Arrivederci!

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Italian Connection

Italian Connection