Italian Villas and Art Nuoveau Style: a weekend in Varese

Distance: 50 km by car • Time: two days • Easy

If you love art, historical italian villas and "bird's eye" views here's an itinerary for a special weekend in Varese and the province. 

Day 1

Start from Laveno, one of the most beautiful villages of Lombardy, set of many movies and Hemingway's beloved place. 

  • Laveno is situated between the blue of Lago Maggiore and the green of Monte Sasso del Ferro, that separates the town from the rest of the province. Spend the morning walking along the lakeshore and drink an espresso in one of the cafes of the village. Go up through one of the tiny streets that looks on the lake till you reach the departure of the funicular, at the slopes of the mountain. You can chose to reach the top hiking or by funicular: you will travel for 16 minutes surrounded by silence and nature. When you arrive on top the show is incredible: the color of the water is even more blue and the landscape made of mountains, hills, valleys and tiny villages is great. 


@claracsilla and @bekleidet

  • If you hardly can take your eyes away from this wonder, have a lunch with a view on top of the Sasso del Ferro mountain or go back in the old town and pick up a spot for lunch: you will find good lake fish for sure. Remember to visit MideC before leaving Laveno, the International Museum of Ceramic Design. 


@chiaraviaggiante and @museomidec

  • In the afternoon drive to Villa della Porta Bozzolo, FAI property. Built in the sixteenth century as a country residence, Villa della Porta Bozzolo later became a country seat for the aristocracy. An impressive Italian garden was later added, which is now considered to be one of the most majestic examples of garden design in Italy. The ornate interiors preserve one of the most sophisticated and decorative series of frescoes from eighteenth-century life in Lombardy, which are attributed to the Varese artist Magatti.If you still have some time, end your journey in Arcumeggia, one of the most beautiful "painted villages" in the province. 


@quasichiara e @georgelucky1973

Where to stay: Ostello Casa RossaAppartamenti Emmaus

What to do: a walk to discover the Campo dei Fiori

Day 2

  • From the middle of the Eighteenth Century Varese became a privileged vacation destination. In that period the main style of architecture was the vibrant Art Nouveau, very famous and loved by the vacationers. Defined as an "open-air museum of Art Nouveau", Varese is home of many beautiful buildings and villas in Art Nouveau style. Spend the morning discovering these buildings on a bus: Varese Liberty Tour will make you discover these artistic beauties. Then go back to the old town of Varese for a visit. 


@saradeluigi e @elenacassella_

  • Spend the afternoon in Villa Menafoglio Litta PanzaSurrounded by splendid gardens covering 33,000 sqm, Villa Panza overlooks the city of Varese from the hill known as Biumo Superiore. More than one hundred works of art by contemporary artists are displayed in the villa’s halls and large stables as well as priceless period furnishings and an important collection of African and pre-Columbian art. Get lost between these beautiful art works and the garden and don't miss the photogenic greenhouse. If you want to, you can have dinner at Ristorante Luce, situated in the veranda of the Villa, with a great view on the garden. 

Where to stay: ART HotelUNAHotels

What to do: a walk in the Old City of Varese, a guided tour of Giardini Estensi 

Do you want to be accompanied on this tour? Request a licensed tour guide. Contact us!

Plan your stay and your experience in the land of the lakes.

    Lago Maggiore Meeting Industry
    Provincia di Varese