North Italy by train ?

Aug 9th, 2007, 12:37 PM
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 10,154
For Lugano, you take a 15 minute ferry ride across the lake from Varenna to Menaggio, and then you get (I think) a bus from there.

For Varenna to Como, you would take a boat south on the lake.
ellenem is offline  
Aug 9th, 2007, 01:17 PM
Join Date: Feb 2003
Posts: 95
We did train travel in northern Italy this year and certainly enjoyed the convenience of it. However, we neither one care for large cities and very much missed the small towns of Tuscany and Umbria from our previous trips. I would not want to stay in Milan for 4-5 nights. We did stay in Desenzano in a very convenient hotel to the train station and enjoyed the Lake Garda area. You could easily spend several days there. We also spent some time in Bolzano and enjoyed it also. The museum is fantastic! We were a little less enthralled with Padua and Bologna simply because we enjoy small towns. Loved Ravenna.
KatGio is offline  
Aug 10th, 2007, 01:59 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,021
Valtor - Ellen's right.

Varenna-Lugano is quickest by ferry (- to Menaggio) then bus (- 1 hr) to Lugano.
A beautiful ride ...

For Menaggio-Lugano bus timetables see:

For ferry services around/across Lake Como see:

For Como town there are 2 direct services from Varenna. If those aren't convenient, cross to Bellagio - from where there are more frequent Fast Boats to Como (- 45 mins approx).
Here's the link:

Hope this helps ...


Steve_James is offline  
Aug 10th, 2007, 02:18 AM
Join Date: Jan 2003
Posts: 7,021
The only inconvenient trip from Varenna is Stresa.

I visited Stresa as a day-trip from Lake Como ... and wondered why I'd bothered.

Just my personal opinion ...

Steve_James is offline  
Aug 18th, 2007, 01:28 PM
Original Poster
Join Date: Oct 2004
Posts: 1,546
Steve and Ellen, you gave me so useful info!
Thanks to both of you!

My trip will be in 2008, probably in May. now, we so many info I received, I have to rethink my itinerary. So, I am glad that I have now such a pleasant work - the research for this the next vacation!
Thanks again for all the good advices.
valtor is offline  
Aug 18th, 2007, 06:10 PM
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 479
Hi valtor,
I would definitely recommend Varenna over Milan. The only way Milan could be convenient would be to stay near the central station, and that's not a nice area, albeit cheaper. But it's not good value for money. Bergamo is an easy trip from Varenna, with a change at Lecco which is at the south eastern tip of the Lake. To get to Como from Varenna it's much nicer to go by ferry! And of course it's easy to get to Milan from Varenna, where you can change for Bologna etc.
Suelynne is offline  

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