Milan, Lombardy, and the Lakes: Places to Explore


  • Bergamo

    If you're driving from Milan to Lake Garda, the perfect deviation from your autostrada journey is the lovely medieval town of Bergamo. Easily one of Italy's most elegant, well-kept, picturesque cities... Read more

  • Cremona

    Cremona is a classical music–lover's dream. With violin shops on every block along its crooked old streets, it is where the world's best violins are crafted. Andrea Amati (1510–80) invented the modern... Read more

  • Gardone Riviera

  • Gargnano

    This small port town was an important Franciscan center in the 13th century, and now comes alive in the summer months when German tourists, many of whom have villas here, crowd the small pebble beach. An... Read more

  • Lake Como

    If your idea of nirvana is palatial villas, rose-laden belvederes, hanging wisteria and bougainvillea, lanterns casting a glow over lakeshore restaurants, and majestic Alpine vistas, then proceed immediately... Read more

  • Mantua

    Mantua (Mantova in Italian) stands tallest among the ancient walled cities of the Po Plain. Its fortifications are circled on three sides by the passing Mincio River, which long provided Mantua with protection... Read more

  • Milan

    At the center of Lombardy is Milan, Italy's second-largest city and its business capital. It holds Italy's most renowned opera house, and as the epicenter of Italian fashion and design, it's a shopper's... Read more

  • Pavia

    Pavia was once Milan's chief regional rival. The city dates from at least the Roman era and was the capital of the Lombard kings for two centuries (572-774). It was at one time known as "the city of a... Read more

  • Riva del Garda

    Riva del Garda is set on the northern tip of Lake Garda against a dramatic backdrop of jagged cliffs and miles of beaches. The old city, surrounding a pretty harbor, was built up during the 15th century... Read more

  • Sirmione

    Dramatically rising out of Lake Garda is the enchanting town of Sirmione. "Paene insularum, Sirmio, insularumque ocelle," sang Catullus in a homecoming poem: "It is the jewel of peninsulas and islands... Read more

  • Stresa and the Isole Borromee

    One of the better-known resorts on the western shore, Stresa is a tourist town that provided one of the settings for Hemingway's A Farewell to Arms. It's capitalized on its central lakeside position, though... Read more

  • Towns along Lake Garda's Eastern Shore

  • Verbania