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THE ROMANCE OF THE ITALIAN LAKES

from £1495
The most picturesque in the world, Lakes Maggiore and Como in Italy resonate with romanticism.
  • Product Code 17450
  • Holiday Type Holidays With Two Grades Of Walking
  • Grade Grade 4, Grade 6
  • Holiday Duration 10 Nights

Guided Walking Holidays - Romance of the Italian Lakes

You can almost hear the lakes and mountains resonate with romanticism. There are vast displays of flowers in perfect contrast to the various hues of blue of the lake and sky. The snow capped peaks in the distance add yet more contrast to this chocolate box scene. This is not country for those who prefer serious mountains. The scene of rhododendron and the throb of the ferry boats plying their trade across the lake accompany our walks. Belle Epoque villas and manicured gardens await exploration. Perhaps a lake shore cafe terrace surrounded by bobbing boats of every colour might distract. Experience this journey with Ramblers Walking Holidays.

Another season, another walk this time above the lake. Chestnuts and walnuts litter our path climbing slowly away from the lake. As we climb the views of the lake are revealed. The further we climb the better views but it would be a shame to rush.

We see different views from our return across the lake by ferry. Accompanied this time by the gentle slap of water on the hull as shore lines recede and advance. These are the sights and sounds to be savoured in one of the world’s more beautiful places.

Using the ferries plying the lakes we can take in the best walking and sightseeing. Wherever we travel wonderful views are a feature of our walking. There are climbs to hillside chapels and views of lakes small and large and some great challenges on the higher grade walks.

Bellagio in particular is a very pretty town set on the end of the peninsula. Set aside some time to have a good look around, browse in the many shops and have a cup of tea or ice cream in a lakeside café.


Holiday Highlights

Grade 4 Highlights

  • Admire the views across Lake Como and when criss-crossing the lakes by ferry.
  • Visit the world-famous gardens and the Borromean Islands.

Grade 6 Highlights 

  • Pigra. A brilliant high-level traverse with outstanding views of the Alps.
  • Walk from the Mottarone cable car.
The holiday inclusions and exclusions at a glance
What's included in this holiday Items that are covered in the cost of holiday price.

      Return flights from Heathrow to Milan Malpensa (British Airways) 
      Airport transfers
      Half board en suite accommodation
      Two walks, two leaders, two grades
      All local transport costs.
Whats not included in this holiday Items that are not covered in the cost of holiday price.

  • Entrance fees to some museums and historic buildings (unless otherwise specified)
  • Personal expenses (such as your bar bill)
  • Discretionary tips
  • Optional excursions
  • Insurance
Please select Departure Date to view:

Please see Holiday Information Sheet for this holidays individual departures itinerary (located under View Departures & Book tab)

Whilst every effort will be made to adhere to the outlined itinerary and advertised program, local conditions can change due to weather or other unforeseen circumstances. This may mean that routes and timings need to be amended or the order of days may change, sometimes at short notice.

This departure: Grade 4 and 6

  1. Day 1

    Fly to Milan Malpensa Airport and transfer to Stresa.

  2. Day 2

    Grade 4 walkers can enjoy a walk from Stresa to Belgirate. The walk is generally easy underfoot on tracks some of which are cobbled. A coffee stop at Brisino offers magnificent views.  Finish in Belgirate for gelato. A lake side bus takes us back to Stresa. 11km (6½  miles); 300↑↓; 3 hours.
    Grade 6 walkers might finish at Belgirate but take a higher level path through Lesa and on to Belgirate. The walk is mainly on mule tracks with some outstanding view points (notably our intended picnic spot) on the way. 16.5km (10 miles); 580m↑↓; 3½ hours.

  3. Day 3

    Grade 4 walkers might enjoy an excursion to the famous Borromean Islands a short boat journey from Stresa. The pace of the day will be relaxed and the gardens outrageously sumptuous.
    Grade 6 walkers can take a walk up from Verbania to the summit of Monte Orfano with its spectacular views, before descending to pretty Mergozzo on the lake of the same name. 12 km (8 miles); 700m↑↓; 4 hours.

  4. Day 4

    Grade 4 walkers take the cable car to Monte Mottarone (1490m). After enjoying the fresh air and views to Monte Rosa, the walk descends down to the Alpine Gardens at the mid station on the cable car. 15 km (9 miles); 400m↑ 750 m↓; 3½ hours.
    Grade 6 walkers also take the cable car to enjoy a lovely varied walk with spectacular views over to Lake Orta, Lake Maggiore and the high peaks of the Alps. The walk passes spectacular granite rocks, and the steep outcrop of Monte Zughero. 13 km (8 miles); 450m↑ 1000m↓; 4 hours.

  5. Day 5

    This is planned as free day but there are myriad options for walks and sightseeing (could include the fabulous centovalli  train excursion to Locarno in Switzerland). Your RWH leaders will be happy to advise.

  6. Day 6

    Today we transfer to Bellagio. The transfer takes the morning so we have time for a lunch in Bellagio before an orientation walk around this picturesque lake side town.

  7. Day 7

    Grade 4 walkers take the ferry across the lake to Menaggio to enjoy a circular walk into the Val Sanagra hills above the town.  12km (8  miles); 420m↑↓; 4 hours.
    Grade 6 walkers can start in the same place but take a longer and more challenging circuit in the Val Sanagra hills. 18km  (12 miles); 700m ↑↓; 4½ hours.

  8. Day 8

    Grade 4 walkers start with a ferry ride to Lenno, directly across the lake from Bellagio. We walk north on cobbled paths and tracks to reach Cadenabbia and Villa Carlotta. 13km (8 miles); 400m↑↓; 4 hours.
    Grade 6 walkers also cross the lake but walk up to a viewpoint above Cadenabbia. It offers the chance to see fascinating remains of WW1 trenches. 14km (8  miles); 780m↑↓; 4 hours.

  9. Day 9

    Grade 4 walkers have a relaxed walk from Varenna to Bellano and on to Dervio if possible. This is our chance to explore the eastern side of the lake. 12km (7 miles); 350m↑↓; 3 hours.
    Grade 6 walkers will take the high level ridge walk to Monte San Primo with panoramic views of Monte Rosa, Matterhorn and Monte Viso. But only if the weather is good. 15km (9  miles); 620m↑775m↓; 4  hours.

  10. Day 10

    Grade 4 walkers can follow L’Antica Strada Regina, built by the Romans, along the lake from Menaggio to Rezzonico. 11 km (7 miles); 380m↑↓; 4 hours.
    Grade 6 walkers can enjoy a classic walk taking the cable car up to Pigra, walk passed Montes Pasquella and Sertore to Costone. 13km (8  miles); 750m↑↓; 5 hours.

  11. Day 11

    Transfer to Milan Malpensa Airport for our flight to the UK.

Travel Details

  • Return flights from Heathrow to Milan Malpensa (British Airways) 
  • Airport transfers by road c. 1 hour
  • We can offer regional flight options but due to the location and travelling time to our resort we operate just one transfer coach between the airport and our hotel to coincide with our main group. This may mean that there is a wait at the overseas airport in one or both directions
  • Upgrades are available on most flights. For scheduled flights this may be Premium Economy, Business or First Class. Most low-cost carriers also have extra legroom seats.

Trip Map

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Hotel Della Torre

The Hotel della Torre is located close to the lake shore a little outside Stresa town. It is ideally located for the cable car ride up Monte Mottarone which we take for one of our walks. The hotel is well equipped with swimming pool, gym and rooms finished in a pleasant modern style.


Hotel Fioroni

The recently renovated Hotel Fioroni is located above the centre of this pretty little town with beautiful views across the lake. The family run hotel is a 10 minute walk down the hill into town. All rooms are air conditioned, have satellite TV, telephone, en-suite facilities, mini-bar and safe and some have amazing views of the mountains. An expansive buffet breakfast is served every morning and we will take dinner in local restaurants. Free Wi-Fi is available throughout the hotel.


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