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The village of Varenna is set on a promontory beneath forest-cloaked hills. The town’s rich history dates back to 1169, when refugees whose villages had been destroyed by war helped transform the town into the beautiful place it is today. There are a number of spectacular attractions here, including the Villa Monastero – a villa, cafe and garden set right at the lake’s edge.

The village itself is gathered neatly around a harbour, with colourful fishermen’s houses and gently bobbing boats. Behind is a small warren of steeply sloping pedestrian streets, where you'll find a handful of restaurants. Take the half-hour hike up to the magnificent 11th-century Vezio Castle, which offers outstanding views back across the town and lake. 

Set right at the lake’s intersection, Varenna provides ferry lines to Menaggio, Bellagio and Cadenabbia, making it easy to explore even more of Lake Como. 

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Things to do in Varenna

Villa Carlotta

GARDEN / PARK

Bernina Express

ACTIVITY

Villa Balbianello

GARDEN / PARK
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Excursions are not bookable online

If you would like to pre-book one of our excursions, please call our Italy Experts on 01293 762410*.

Excursions in and around Varenna

Villa Balbianello

A half-day, private boat tour around one of Lake Como’s most beautiful villas.

St. Moritz & The Bernina Express

This full-day tour includes a scenic train journey into Switzerland with a stop in St. Moritz.

Milan

Spend a day exploring Italy’s fashion capital with a local guide in tow.

The Fabulous Villas of Lake Como & Comacina Island

A half-day guided cruise around Lake Como’s most stunning historic villas, with free time.

Bergamo

A full day to experience beautiful Bergamo, with a guided walking town and free time to explore.

Lake Orta & Stresa

A day exploring Lake Orta, with a stop in elegant Stresa and a boat trip to Isola Bella.

Morcote & Lugano

Spend a day exploring these elegant Swiss towns, including a boat tour in Lake Como.
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