Villas and Gardens of the Italian Lakes with Carol Klein20th Mar 2024

Villas and Gardens of the Italian Lakes with Carol Klein



The fabulous scenery and benign climate of the northern Italian lakes have attracted aristocrats and the wealthy for years, and today their elegant villas and lush gardens perfectly complement the natural landscape.

From our bases on the Gulf of Borromeo on Lake Maggiore and at the foot of Lake Como we will explore a succession of villas and their gardens, all set against the breath taking backdrop of snow-capped mountains and glittering water. We begin with a real treat as we visit the private garden of the President of the Italian Camellia Society, which is home to a remarkable collection of over 500 plants. Nowhere captures the extravagant spirit of the lakeland gardens better than the three Borromean islands, Bella, Madre and Pescatori, which feature sumptuous terraced gardens, shaded woodland walks, flowered terraces and elegant statuary. Other highlights during our stay on Lake Maggiore include a fascinating wholesale specialist plant nurseryVilla Taranto and Villa Pallavicino.

During our stay on Lake Como we will have a private tour with the owner of Villa Cicogna Mozzoni. Azaleas and rhododendrons will put on a dazzling display at Villa Carlotta while the manicured Villa Balbianello, whose garden is impeccably maintained, will be an undoubted highlight. In addition we enjoy a free day to relax and shop in Como town, or visit Villa Melzi d’Eril.

Our departures will be led by popular tour manager and local resident Kate Williamson


8 Days



Full Price£2995

Today's Price£2,895


(includes flights)

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    What to Expect

    • Visit the private garden of the President of the Italian Camellia Society
    • A private tour with the owner of Villa Cicogna Mozzoni
    • The extravagance of the Borromean Islands
    • Stunning views of lakes and mountains at every turn

    Lake Como

    Departure Routes

    LocationPickup TimeDropoff Time
    London Airport08:0020:00
    Milan Malpensa Airport12:00

    ** Please note that all timings are approximate and subject to change. Final timings and pick-up points will be confirmed with your joining instructions approximately 10 days prior to departure. **

    Day by Day Itinerary

    We depart from London to Milan (flight connections and regional departures are available on request).  On arrival we continue by comfortable coach to our base for the next four nights, the 4* Hotel La Palma situated directly on the lakefront in Stresa with picturesque views over Lake Maggiore.  The Hotel La Palma welcomes and invites you to discover the romantic atmosphere and beauty of Lake Maggiore from the wonderful Isola Bella that houses the impressive 17th century Palazzo Borromeo to the impressive bordering mountains. Situated opposite the lakeside promenade with only a five-minute walk to the town centre of Stresa, the hotel offers elegant accommodation and the pretty gardens provide a lovely setting for relaxing.

    A welcome drink will be served in the evening followed by dinner.

    Meals includedLunch, Dinner

    Isola Madre, Lake Maggiore

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