The lakes region of Italy, located in the north of the country, is a place that dreams are made of. The beautiful scenery every where you turn is a testament to that. While the area has been made famous by the likes of celebrities like George Clooney, it’s also still largely a region that’s been undiscovered by many overseas tourists. But, as they say, go where the locals go. And Italians and other Europeans love to vacation here — not only for the lakes and the beautiful mountain scenery, but for a relaxing respite too.
Our newest Italy cooking vacation is a wonderful introduction to this gorgeous region, and it’s an exclusive one, available for a minimum of 2 people with accommodations at luxury hotels. Here are just some of the many highlights of the 6-night trip.
Visit to the Borromean Islands
A must see on a trip to the Lakes district of Italy, the Borromean Islands are found on the second largest lake in Italy, Lake Maggiore. The lake itself is surrounded by a variety of landscapes, with hills to the south and mountains in the north. As for the islands themselves, what makes them so marvelous?
One of the islands — Isola Bella — was previously a fishing village until the 17th century when the island was bought by the Borromeo family. All four of the islands today are a bit of a paradise with their gardens, castles, and, in some cases, rare bird species.
Hands-on Cooking Courses
Touring of the area is complemented with time in the kitchen with two chefs. While in Stresa, and on the shores of Lake Maggiore, learn all about northern Italian cuisine and make a full meal in your villa accommodations. The second cooking class takes place in the famed luxurious city of Bellagio; here you’ll learn to make an important regional dish: risotto!
Tour of Villa Balbianello
The second part of your trip takes place on Lake Como, and on your way there stop at another jewel — the “jewel of Lake Como” in fact — the Villa Balbinaello. It offers one of the most dramatic views in the Lakes region, one of the reasons it’s been used in movies like the James Bond Casino Royale remake.
Time in Milan
As a contrast to your relaxing time at Lake Maggiore and Lake Como, spend on night and day in the fashion-forward city of Milan. With some time on your own, you can choose whether you want to shop at the chic fashion stores, or see some of the history the city has to offer, like the Last Supper fresco.
Historic and luxury accommodate
Throughout your trip be pampered every step of the way with luxury and elegant accommodations. In Lake Maggiore, you’ll be at the refined 5-star Villa Aminta, which has views of the Borromean islands, as well as surrounding garden. Continue your relaxation and exploration at Grand Hotel Victoria, which is on Lake Como and just a short walk from the charring town of Menaggio.
This 6-night trip to the Lakes region of Italy is gourmet and luxury in every sense of the word. See more of the itinerary here, and get ready to pack your bags!
By Liz Hall
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