Introduction
A Renaissance mirage, the villa floats on a mirror-smooth lake. It's morning. The mountains that slide into the water are still hidden in deep blue shadows, except the peaks high above that are tipped in apricot alpenglow. Italy's Lake District always makes us poetic, and this Classic Journey cultural walking tour visits the three most inspiring lakes: Como, Maggiore and Orta. Since the Roman emperors, these gracious waterside resorts have drawn visitors. The climate is mild, loaded with the vibrant colors of Alpine wildflowers and lush semi-tropical gardens. Our footpaths sometimes traverse mountaintop meadows and often hug the crystal clear waters. We spend generous parts of several days on leisurely cruises and visit fine villas, palaces and fishing villages. Nowhere else does stunning scenery, mellow air and rich history come together with such romantic results.
Picture yourself...
  • Strolling lakeside and mountain paths
  • Shopping for sensuous Como silk
  • Cruising to a beautiful island castle
Itinerary at a glance
DAYS 1-3 - BELLAGIO
We meet in Bellagio (3 nights), the lovely historic center of the Italian Lake District region's silk trade, and settle into our lakeside hotel. In a region known for its incredible villas, our first walk leads to one of the finest—Villa Serbelloni—where we've arranged a private visit to its rose gardens. Later, a countryside walk with lake and mountain views culminates at a villa for a wine tasting.

After boating to Como, we enter Switzerland briefly where a wildflower walk ends with the reward of a lakeside gelato.

DAYS 4-7 - ORTA / MILAN
Back to Italy, we end the day in Orta (3 nights), the most beautiful of the Italian Lakes. We'll hop a motor launch to reach San Giulio, a perfect little island with a thousand-year-old monastery. The Borromean Islands in Lake Maggiore are studded with palaces and gardens. We reach them by boat and spend a whole day exploring, mooring for lunch at rustic Isola Dei Pescatori.

Among several lovely walks on country roads and bridle paths we enjoy, one of our favorites leads past silvery olive groves to a shepherdess who invites us in for a tasting of the local cheese. On our final day, you'll have time to amble in Orta and do some shopping if you like before we transfer to Milan.
Italian Lake Retreats
Cultural Walking Adventure
7 Days / 6 Nights
Starting Point: Milan – 11:30 am – Lobby of Hotel De La Ville

Ending Point: Milan Central Train station – 2:00 pm

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Let us create a special departure or itinerary just for you.
Guest Reviews
Italian Lake Retreats
Cultural Walking Adventure
7 Days / 6 Nights

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Go a little off the grid
The ultimate luxury in an Italian Lake District tours is escaping the crowds. On all of our tours we get to the places the turisti don’t go.
They say that geography is destiny
It’s certainly true in the Italian Lake District. The lakes are so scenic because they’re cradled in mountain valleys. Good for photography, but tricky for getting around. Except, that is, when Classic Journeys prepares your way by arranging lake steamers, funiculars, minicoaches and well-chosen footpaths to be sure you see every bit of geography to its best advantage.
Tour Dates & Prices
Tour prices are per person based on double occupancy. Single supplement is only applicable if you are traveling solo and/or have a room to yourself.
TOUR DATES
TOUR PRICES
SINGLE SUPPLEMENT
September 11-17, 2016$4795.00$795.00
October 2-8, 2016$4795.00$795.00
May 7-13, 2017$4795.00$795.00
June 11-17, 2017$4895.00$795.00
July 2-8, 2017$4895.00$795.00
September 10-16, 2017$4895.00$795.00
October 1-7, 2017$4895.00$795.00
  • Full time experienced guide(s) who are with you throughout the trip, handle behind-the-scenes logistics and are there to help with anything from haggling for a rug to buying a tube of toothpaste
  • Support vehicle(s)
  • Admissions to tastings, historic sites and other scheduled events as noted in the detailed daily itinerary.
  • Gratuities for hotels, meals and baggage
  • Trip literature
  • All land transportation during the trip
• All breakfasts and 5 dinners
Italian Lake Retreats
Cultural Walking Adventure
7 Days / 6 Nights
The Italian lakes region has a temperate, Mediterranean-type climate. As a result of the lakes’ moderating influence, the region does not have very significant temperature extremes.

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Arrange for 6-full paying friends to travel together and receive 25% off one trip.
 
 
Hotels
Belvedere Bellagio Hotel

A lovely lakeside hotel that has been owned and operated by the Martinelli Manoni family since 1880. Then, it was known as 'La Vignetta', because of the grape vines that surrounded it and the incredible views of the water and mountains.

Villa Crespi

This grand hotel's soaring arabesque tower is a Lake Orta landmark. Built by in 1879 as a private getaway by a wealthy cotton merchant, it is today a perfectly extravagant Relais & Chateaux property. The restaurant has two coveted Michelin stars.

Italian Lake Retreats
Cultural Walking Adventure
7 Days / 6 Nights

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APR, MAY, JUN, OCT, DEC 

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7 Days, 6 Nights
APR, MAY, JUN, SEP, OCT, DEC 

Apulia

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7 Days, 6 Nights
APR, MAY, JUN, SEP, OCT 

Sardinia & Corsica

Cultural Walking Adventure

7 Days, 6 Nights
MAY, JUN, SEP, OCT 

Sicily

Cultural Walking Adventure

7 Days, 6 Nights
APR, MAY, JUN, SEP, OCT 

Greek Isles

Cultural Walking Adventure

7 Days, 6 Nights
MAY, JUN, SEP, OCT 

Croatia's Dalmatian Coast

Cultural Walking Adventure

7 Days, 6 Nights
MAY, JUN, JUL, SEP, OCT 

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MAY, JUN, SEP, OCT 

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Go a little off the grid
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They say that geography is destiny
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