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Tour Description

  • 8 days
  • suggested
  • multi-centres

Although Lake Garda is arguably Italy’s most popular lake, it is Lake Maggiore and Lake Orta that should be at the top of your must-visit list. With impressive villas, landscaped gardens and charming lakeside towns, Orta and Maggiore are perfect choices for a relaxed getaway. 

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Looking for something totally unique?
Our Italy Experts can create completely bespoke itineraries. Give them a call with your requirements and they can tailor-make a trip to suit you.

Call our experts today and turn your ideas into a dream holiday

01293 762410 *

At a glance
  • A seven night getaway to the relaxing lakes
  • Tour the small islands once home to the famous Borromeo family
  • Free time to explore the many towns lining Lake Maggiore and Orta

Suggested Itinerary

Day 1: UK- Lake Maggiore

Overnight Accommodation


Map of Day 1: UK- Lake Maggiore

Collect your hire car from the airport and head north to Stresa, located on the western shore of Lake Maggiore. Check in to your hotel, then head out to explore – go for a stroll along the lakefront promenade, or seek out a cosy trattoria for your first Italian dinner. 

Days 2-5: Lake Maggiore

Overnight Accommodation


Points of Interest

Map of Days 2-5: Lake Maggiore

Join a boat trip out to the Borromean Islands for the day. This trio of islands is owned by the Borromeo family, one of Italy’s most famous noble families. Isola Bella is home to the grand Palazzo Borromeo, which is part museum, part family home. Tour the opulent bedrooms and ballrooms, then journey out into the magnificent gardens. Keep an eye out for the resident white peacocks, who roam freely among the fountains and flower beds. Isola Madre, the largest island, also has beautiful gardens, as well as an elegant villa. Isola Pescatori, home to a peaceful fishing community, is the perfect place for a seafood supper – many of the restaurants have their own boats to take you back to the mainland in the evening, as public ferries stop at around 7pm.

Why not take advantage of your proximity to the Alps and embark on a scenic train journey along the Ossola Valley, taking in the famous Simplon Pass. At its highest point you can experience uninterrupted 360-degree views of the Swiss and Italian Alps – just be sure to take your camera!

If you fancy exploring a little further afield, Lake Lugano and Lake Como can both be reached on a day trip. In Lake Como, pay a visit to Villa Carlotta, a beautiful lakefront villa with spectacular gardens.

Spend a few hours wandering through the botanical gardens of Villa Taranto, one of Lake Maggiore’s biggest attractions. More than 20,000 species of plant can be found here, including 350 varieties of dahlia. 

Day 6: Lake Maggiore- Lake Orta

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Points of Interest

Map of Day 6: Lake Maggiore- Lake Orta

Enjoy one last walk along the lakefront before driving the 40 minutes west to quiet Lake Orta. Your destination is the picturesque town of Orta San Giulio. Nestled around a pretty harbour, it overlooks the island of San Giulio, which can easily be reached by boat. 

Day 7: Lake Orta

Overnight Accommodation


Points of Interest

Map of Day 7: Lake Orta

Up on a hill above the town is the Sacro Monte di Orta, a UNESCO-protected collection of chapels dedicated to Saint Francis of Assisi. It’s a steep but scenic walk up, or you can also take the little tourist train. 

Day 8: Lake Orta - UK

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Map of Day 8: Lake Orta - UK

After a cappuccino or two, it’s time to head back to Milan for your flight home. 

Call to discuss and book your tour 01293 762410 *

Flight Information

The closest airport to Lake Maggiore is Milan Malpensa (MXP). Direct flights to Milan are available from Birmingham, Edinburgh, London Gatwick, London Heathrow, London Luton, London Stansted and Manchester and take approximately 2 hours.

Direct flights to Milan Bergamo (BGY) depart from London Stansted, Bristol, Manchester, East Midlands and Belfast and take approximately 2 hours.