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Day 2: Lake Maggiore
Arrive Milan airport and transfer to the gorgeous Lake Maggiore area, where the climate is mild in both summer and winter, producing Mediterranean vegetation, with beautiful gardens growing rare and exotic plants. As with all the Italian lakes, the micro-climate means endless sunshine and palm trees and an Alpine background! Time to explore your surroundings before dinner and overnight.
Day 3: Lake Maggiore
A delightful day featuring a boat trip to the Borromean Islands, starting with Isola Bella. In 1632, Count Vitaliano Borromeo began the construction of the monumental Baroque Palace and the majestic and scenic gardens, which have made the island famous and which to this day bear witness to the splendours of an era. Included is a visit to the Palace, containing priceless works of art such as tapestries, furniture, statues, paintings, and stuccoes. Stroll the stunning gardens, a classic and inimitable example of seventeenth century "Italian garden" forming an extraordinary, flowered monument laid out over a series of ornate and overlapping terraces. On to the picturesque Isola Pescatori, an island of working fishermen and their families.
Day 4: Lake Maggiore - Lake Lugano - Lake Como
Cross the border into Switzerland and have your cameras ready for the unforgettable beauty of Lake Lugano. As you travel along the lake, view Venetian-type villages, along with citrus groves and palm trees. Stop in the city for a delightful walk along the lakeside promenade. Time to window-shop and enjoy an espresso before returning to Italy. Continue to the Lake Como Area for dinner and overnight.
Day 5: Bellagio Boat Trip
Wake up to the magnificent beauty and serenity of Lake Como, a popular destination since Roman times. A magical combination of lush Mediterranean foliage and snowy Alpine peaks, Lake Como is best known for its exquisite villas. Time to take in the splendid vistas before your included boat trip to Bellagio, known as the pearl of the lake, in a beautiful setting where the three branches of Lake Como come together. Stroll the panoramic lakeside promenade and enjoy the village with its picturesque stone lanes and stairways with shops, gelato bars, cafes, and restaurants.
Day 6: Lake Como - Lake Garda Area
Stunning scenery surrounds you as you travel to Lake Garda, with a stop in the ancient fortified town of Sirmione, known for its thermal springs. See the Grotto of Catullus, the most striking example of a Roman private edifice discovered in northern Italy. View the 13th century Scaliger Castle, and the Church of San Pietro in Mavino featuring frescoes from the 12th-16th centuries. Time to explore the narrow medieval streets, bustling with color and life before continuing on to the Lake Garda area for dinner and overnight.
Day 7: Lake Garda Area
A free day to soak up the picturesque villages, medieval castles, and lakeside promenades of Lake Garda, a luxury destination for the ancient Romans.
Day 8: Verona - Lake Maggiore Area
Depart Lake Garda and stop in medieval Verona, setting of Shakespeare's tale of the doomed lovers, Romeo and Juliet. See Juliet's balcony, and enjoy time to explore before traveling to the Lake Maggiore area for your final dinner and overnight.
Transfer to the airport for your return flight.
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