Lake Como 2018
September 29 – October 6
Let us show you the posti segreti / secret spots of this stunning glacial lake. It is the third largest lake in Italy and one of the deepest in Europe. The 26 mile long shoreline is dotted with idyllic villages and surrounded by snow capped mountains, making it one of the most visually dramatic landscapes anywhere.
Architecturally it is a wonder as well, with Roman and Gothic churches scattered throughout and stunning villas, rich in history and in color, set among terraced landscaping, for which Italy is renowned. The word majestic best describes the lake and it’s villas.
This is an active trip that will include a lot of walking. Some villages are quite hilly and there are ancient paths we will walk from village to village. These paths are now mostly groomed and allow you to see the region as it was hundreds of years ago. A more adventurous hike one day takes about three hours up a mountain to a Rifugio / rustic hut, that serves simple, yet delicious meals. This particular rifugio is run by a lovely family who embraces you the moment you walk in the door. They raise all the animals and grow all the food you will eat, a true farm to table experience. The vista is breathtaking, the air is as fresh and fragrant as it gets, and it might be the best lunch of your life, partly due to the fact you just hiked up a mountain!
You also travel to Italy to eat! Life in Italy revolves around the kitchen, and they learn from an early age to appreciate all that goes into each recipe, so they eat slowly and appreciate every meal. And so will you!
Get your taste buds ready for homemade and hand rolled pasta, local whitefish lemon ravioli, risotto with truffles, spaghetti with zucchini flowers, and pizza like nowhere else in the world. It’s their claim to fame and they deserve it. We should also point out that Italians are also responsible for gifting the world with cappuccino, gelato, and Tiramisu, all of which you will have on our trip, as often as you’d like.
Each restaurant we take you to makes everything from scratch with local, regional and seasonal ingredients. They prepare their favorite recipes for us and pair the appropriate wine with each course.
Just imagine, seven days and nights of the best food in the world, in our humble opinion anyway!
We will stay the entire week at an old boat house that has recently been converted into an albergo / inn. The long and narrow rooms are where they once made the wooden boats that serviced the lake. Two brothers own the inn and did an amazing job on the restoration, dedicating all the space to the beautiful rooms and restaurant. There is no lobby, so it’s just us in our private boat house! Each room has an en suite bathroom and a view of the lake. We will start our day each morning with breakfast in their charming restaurant or on their terrace and then, andiamo / off we go!
We will take several boat rides to the lesser known villages so you can see the charm without the crowds. Meandering through the little streets is pure joy. For the first few days we will visit a couple of villages and enjoy lunch al fresco. There are a multitude of historic villas we can visit as well, one more amazing than the next.
And since everyone should experience driving Italian style, we will take a road trip to Valtellina, a valley bordering Switzerland which is the largest terraced wine region in Italy. The grapes of Valtellina are the Nebbiolo variety and produce Sassella, amongst other delicious wines. We will visit a a beautiful family run vineyard and have a private tour with the most enthusiastic and adorable woman in all of Valtellina. Lunch on the way to the valley will be one you will never forget. Yet another secret spot that you would have never found on your own. Luckily our friend, a chef, told us about it.
We don’t give our entire itinerary away here so we can keep our secret spots secret. However, we will gladly email it to you and/or discuss it on the phone. We encourage old fashioned phone calls so you can get to know us and realize that it would indeed be fun to travel with Buon Viaggio.
Pricing & Terms
Tour length: 7 days
Location: Northern Italy / Lake Como and Valtellina
Tour Price: $3,750 USD per person or € 3,215 per person
Supplemental charge: for people traveling alone, there is an additional charge solely due to the fact that rooms are charged based on double occupancy. That supplement is $700 or €618
Deposit: $1,500 USD or €1,500 is due at time of booking to reserve your space
Full Payment: Due 45 days prior to trip start date
Payment Options: Personal Checks or Credit Card payment via PayPal. A 3.5% fee is additional for credit card payments.
Payment Terms: Once you make the full payment, it is non-refundable due to the up front costs incurred by BuonViaggio.tours to secure all arrangements. This is why Travel Insurance, covering the full cost of the trip, is required. If we have a waiting list and are able to fill your spot, we make every effort to do so and return your payment. Please read next item.
Requirements: Travel Insurance. Travel insurance helps to minimize the risk of monetary losses you would incur in the event of a delay of your departure due to weather, airline strike, missed connection, etc… As well, your inability to travel because of illness, injury, or unforeseen financial complications.
Here are two trusted travel insurance companies:
– All accommodations for 7 evenings
– Daily Breakfast and Dinner, which includes wine (a reasonable amount!), aperitivo, coffee, deserts, etc…
– Transportation while on the tour including boats, taxis and passenger van
– All excursions such as a vineyard tour, Villa entry, etc
– Travel Insurance
– Transportation to and from Malpensa Airport: see below for options
– Lunches: this will allow for some spontaneity while on our daily journeys. We can collectively decide to have pizza in one village or panini in the next. Or you can choose to do whatever you like, and we meet up in an hour or so.
– Endless lattes, espressos and gelato you may want to have every day
– Personal expenses and incidentals
Malpensa airport is 41 miles from Lago di Como and normally takes just under an hour via car. Our hotel is in the town of Laglio, which is another 9 miles up the west side of the lake from the town of Como
A taxi should cost between $75-$85. It could be an entertaining ride depending on your driver!
Via Hired Car:
We can arrange for drivers we know to pick you up in a Mercedes Sedan (they love their cars mind you) which will cost about $140 one way.
Via Hired Passenger Van:
If a few people arrive at Malpensa within an hour or so of each other, we would be happy to coordinate a Mercedes passenger van (up to seven people) to pick you up with a total cost of $160, which would be divided by the passengers.
There is a train service (www.lenord.it) from the airport (it is the same train that goes to Milan). You have to get off at Saronno station, and connect to a train coming from Milan. The end of the line in Como is at Como Lago station. This will take about 1.5 hours which includes the 22 minute transfer at Saronno. This cost is $10. From the train station you would have to take a taxi to Laglio which costs about $45.