This is a great introduction to the dramatic beauty of northern Italy, explored on scenic drives and stays in world-class hotels. Highlights include beautiful lakeside gems with complimentary ferries. You’ll begin with Milan’s historic extravagance before following in the footsteps of Europe’s aristocracy to the Italian Lakes – Maggiore, Como and Garda. Here, snow-capped peaks look down on island-dotted waters fringed by vineyards, sun terraces and idyllic fishing villages. End with Verona whose rich heritage is evidenced by everything from Roman wonders to medieval grandeur.
In the late morning you will meet your personal guide to do a walking tour to get in touch with a modern and at the same historical city, full of elegant palaces and ancient churches. You will see: Milan cathedral, built in Gothic style; the Vittorio Emanuele II Gallery; the Scala Theatre (interior and exterior) and Scala square, the Sforzesco castle. In the afternoon you will visit by yourselves the Last Supper. A masterpiece of the Italian art by Leonardo da Vinci.
Dinner will be served in a typical trattoria Milanese, or in one of the best Michelin - starred restaurants, where you will taste the traditional dishes in a unique location. Dinner not included.
Today you will check out the hotel and outside you will find your vintage car Alfa Duetto Spider or Mercedes E.
You then set off, driving towards Lake Maggiore. You will stop along Orta San Giulio. It stands on the shores of Lake Orta. It is one of the amazing village in Italy and it is also called the "painted country", a place of a thousand colors. On the walls of many buildings, in fact, artists from all over Italy and Europe have drawn frescoes that portray the history of this small village perched on the slopes of Mottarone.
On day 3, you will meet your personal guide to visit the biggest and one of the most important Borromean Islands of Lago, Mother Island. It is famous for its gardens and the beautiful ancient palace. You will visit also Firsherman island, the smallest island and the unique inhabited all the year. It is called Fisherman island due to the job of the ancient inhabitants.
On day 4, in the morning, you will enjoy a cooking class with a high - quality chef in a professional kitchen located in a 5 stars hotel overlooking the Lake Maggiore. You will learn how prepare Italian dishes and your chef will explain all secrets of the Italian cuisine. Free afternoon for relaxing along the Lake Maggiore. You will drive and discover villages located along the river of the Lake.
On day 5, you set off again, this time heading to Lake Como on routes that hug its shores, passing through short tunnels only to emerge to yet more beautiful views. Along with near-ancient basilicas and monastic botanical gardens, pretty villages line its coast where locals enjoy lake fish, paths wind between terracotta-roofed buildings and citrus groves.
On day 6, this morning, at the hotel you will meet your guide to reach the pier to enjoy a full day tour of Como Lake by private boat. Lake Como is the third largest lake in Italy and is ringed with scenic towns. On board you will admire charming villas overlooking the lake. You will reach Bellag, a beautiful town located along the river. You will walk around with your guide and lunch. You will visit Villa Carlotta, beautiful villa was built at the end of XVII century by the Milanese marquis Giorgio Clerici in a natural basin between lake and mountains, facing the dolomite Grignas and the peninsula of Bellagio. The architect created for the Clericis an important but sober building, with an Italian garden decorated with sculptures, stairs and fountains. You will admire its magnificent botanic garden and art masterpieces in over 70.000 square metres of gardens and museum. Enjoy your lunch along the Lake and admire the breathtaking surrounding landscape. In the afternoon you will take a ferry to go back to the hotel.
On day 7, in the morning, you will enjoy a half day hiking excursion with your private guide. Start with a 30 minutes cruise by ferry boat to reach the beautiful village of Torno, to start your trekking through the charming village. Along the way you will admire the fascinating Massi Avelli. Then you will reach “Monte Piatto”, here you will enjoy the view over the lake. You will admire the Lake from above surrounded by typical villages.
On day 8, you head to Lake Garda, the largest of Italy's lakes and considered by many to be the most beautiful. Before reaching Lake Garda, you will discover Lake Iseo. Driving along vineyards, on the hills, it will be an unforgettable experience. Be sure to stop for lunch on the way.
On day 9, you will reach Sirmione, called also the Pearl of Lake Garda. Here you will meet your personal guide to visit the Castle, Caves of Catullo, church of Saint Peter located on the highest part of the peninsula.
In the afternoon, you will stop in winery to taste local wine to learn more about the production.Lake Garda is famous for the production of red wine called Amarone.
Optional tour: "The path of dreams". Certainly the panoramic view and the position overlooking Lake Garda make this bike path one of the obligatory stops for those who love walking or cycling, letting themselves be enchanted by the surrounding landscape. The path has a total overall length of 2 kilometers.
On day 11, you make the short drive to Verona, the romantic town of Romeo and Juliet. Driving to Verona, also the countryside reflect the beautiful history of eternal love.
You will meet your guide at the hotel lobby to visit Verona with the famous story scene of “Romeo and Juliet”. Admire the many monuments, the inside courtyards, the beautiful buildings and also the hidden spots and streets. Visit the Juliet’s tomb, where the tragic death of Romeo and Juliet supposedly had its end and through streets and squares involved inShakespeare's tragedy: Romeo's house, the place of Romeo and Tybalt's duel and much more. Final stop at the famous balcony in Juliet's house. Wander Piazza dei Signori and take in another square, Piazza delle Erbe, before descending on the Arena di Verona: Evoking Rome’s Colosseum, this is the world’s best-preserved gladiatorial arena, still used for monumental opera performances.
Optional tour from the end of June to September: In the evening you will attend an opera show at Arena in Verona. It will be an unique operatic experience in the Roman.
The Verona Arena is a Roman amphitheatre in Piazza Bra in Verona, Italy built in the first century. It is still in use today and is internationally famous for the large-scale opera performances given there. It is one of the best preserved ancient structures of its kind. In ancient times, the arena's capacity was nearly 30,000 people. The stage for concerts and opera performances decreases the available places to a maximum of 15,000.
Today you will check out the hotel to reach Venice. On the way you will drive to Padua where you will meet up with your professional guide and enjoy a tour at Padua - stroll around the center’s handsomely porticoed streets, and then head inside St Anthony’s Basilica – Padua’s most celebrated monument. Admire the altar and then head outside to see the Equestrian Statue of Gattamelata – an impressive Donatello sculpture that guards the basilica’s entrance.
Private boat transfer in Venice; At your arrival your you will meet your assistant and porter service to drop off your rental car and board a private boat that transfer you from Piazzale Rome to the Hotel Starhotels Splendid Venice.
On day 13, you meet your guide at the hotel lobby. Start your private walking tour of the city to discover the Venice of the Venetians through its most typical districts: Rialto with its famous bridge and the colourful animated fish and fruit market. You will continue your private walking tour of the city. Venice’s charm lies both in its unique civil engineering achievements, and in the harmony of Eastern and Western artistic styles that have flourished here over the centuries. Your tour highlights some of the major sites that define the look and history of Venice, and includes visits to Doges Palace, StMark’s Basilica and St Mark’s square.
You will visit Murano & Burano. Murano with your guide by private boat to see how the famous glass making is made along with an expert glass connoisseur who will lead you through the closed doors of the glass master’s private studio. Burano knowns for its wonderfully vibrant houses, this town is a real life rainbow happy land.
Private boat transfer to Venice airport.
Over the years we have researched and refined the list of vehicle equipment that we provide. The equipment is identical in every vehicle but we always ensure you have the essentials for each country and its respective driving conditions.
We have access to a range of vehicles for this itinerary. Should you wish to use another vehicle, just let us know and we will include it it your itinerary.
All our itineraries are tailor made, but here are some of our favourite routes and camp combinations.