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Best of the Italian Lakes

9 Days from $2,003 per person

Style: First Class | Pace: Comfortable

Enjoy a stylish lakeside sojourn in Italy—explore 14th-century Marostica, sip a tasty cappuccino on Como's lakeside promenade and visit Milan, one of the world's design capitals.

Travel to Europe often requires an overnight flight. Please arrange for flights to arrive on or before Day 1.

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Overview

Enjoy a stylish lakeside sojourn in Italy—explore 14th-century Marostica, sip a tasty cappuccino on Como's lakeside promenade and visit Milan, one of the world's design capitals.

Travel to Europe often requires an overnight flight. Please arrange for flights to arrive on or before Day 1.

  1. The favorite summer retreat for the who's who of Italy for centuries provides an enchanting backdrop for your first day in Italy. On arrival at Milan Malpensa Airport transfers will operate at 9:30 am, 1 pm and 3:30 pm. Guests arriving later should make their own way to the hotel in the charming resort of Baveno on the shores of Lake Maggiore. Enjoy a Welcome Reception this evening to meet your fellow travel companions and Travel Director before embarking on your jaunt.

    meal(s):Welcome Reception
    hotel:Simplon/Grand Dino
  2. Journey through Italy's exquisite Lake District to scenic Lake Como. Walk through the beautiful Como waterfront or relax alongside the lake indulging in a tasty gelato. Then it's time to ease into la dolce vita, ambling along the glamorous Baveno Marina—the gentle sounds of this lakeside setting are a soulful way to enjoy your afternoon. Spend free time exploring Baveno with its Romanesque bell tower and octagonal baptistery.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
  3. The enchanting lanes of Bergamo, near the foothills of the Alps, yield architectural and artistic treasures which we will have an opportunity to explore this morning. Wander past centuries-old Renaissance façades and into the exquisite Piazza Vecchia built on the site of an ancient Roman Forum. See the ornate Contarini Fountain and 12th-century Santa Maria Maggiore Basilica. We continue our love affair with the Italian Lakes, traveling to Lake Garda for a relaxing five-night stay. This evening, we connect with loclas over a Be My Guest dinner featuring local fare. 

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
    hotel:Villa Maria
  4. Romance in the air, we journey to Verona engaging in the tragic tale of Shakespeare's star-crossed lovers at Juliet's Balcony. Our walking tour with a Local Specialist will also take us past the Roman Arena, still in use today, followed by some free time to explore the city alone. See the seven medieval towers of Castelvecchio, relax under the shady trees in Verona's expansive Piazza Bra or clamber up Lamberti's Tower for magnificent views.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
  5. We embark on a full-day excursion today to the ancient walled town of Marostica, most renowned for its living chess event held every second year, although the gigantic chessboard is visible in the Piazza Castello all year round. We enjoy a leisurely exploration of the city's iconic sights, including its old city walls, Castles and Romanesque bell tower. We venture to the banks of the River Brenta for an unhurried visit to Bassano del Grappa, celebrated for its white brandy (Grappa) and magnificent scenery. This evening we return to Lake Garda.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
  6. Indulge in a full day at leisure to soak up the picture-perfect setting of Italy's largest lake. Journey along its tranquil shores, stopping at lakeside villages to savor the intoxicating aroma of lemons around every turn. Enjoy the flavors of delicious local olive oils and cheese at local markets, stroll along flower-lined lakeside paths or visit the lake's extraordinary sights, including the 13th-century Scaliger Castle, Grottoes of Catullus or the 5th-century wooden statue of St. Peter near Bogliaco. Perhaps join an Optional Experience to visit the magnificent Dolomite mountain range, a World Heritage Site comprising 18 peaks over 9,800 feet high.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
  7. Sparkling Lambrusco, salty prosciutto and the intense aromas of parmigiano await in the gastronomic hub of Modena, which we explore today in the company of a Local Specialist. Wander past pastel-hued façades in Modena's Old Town into the magnificent Piazza Grande which, along with its 12th-century cathedral and Torre Civica, has been designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Sample the intoxicating flavors, including their world-famous balsamic vinegar, of a city that was the birthplace of Ferrari and Pavarotti, home to Michelin Star restaurants and tortellini. Our gourmet interlude nearing its an end, we take a short drive to the Ferrari Museum where we'll dive into culture and explore the history of this Italian icon founded by Enzo Ferrari. This evening, we enjoy a leisurely dinner at our hotel.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Dinner with Wine
  8. In search of spires that reach the sky, we leave our tranquil lakeside setting behind for the chic northern capital of Milan. Admire the extraordinary Gothic Duomo, ornate La Scala Opera House and 19th-century Galleria with its impressive glass and iron-domed roof. Enjoy the rest of the afternoon at leisure to jostle with the ambitious Milanese for your spot on the runways of Via Montenapoleone, Via della Spiga and Via Sant'Andrea. This evening we indulge in a Farewell Dinner, joining our fellow travelers to celebrate the end of an exquisite vacation together.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast, Farewell Dinner
    hotel:Starhotels Business Palace
  9. Our jaunt through the Italian Lakes has come to an end. We say arrivederci to Italy and your companions. Return transfers will operate from Baveno and arrive at Milan Malpensa Airport at 7:30 am and 10:30 am. Conditions apply.

    meal(s):Buffet Breakfast
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  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

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  • Definite Departure
Depart Date Return Date Price Discount Availability Price
26 Apr 19 4 May 19 checkmark $2,250$2,025pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
3 May 19 11 May 19 $2,250$2,025pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
10 May 19 18 May 19 $2,250$2,025pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
17 May 19 25 May 19 checkmark $2,250$2,025pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
24 May 19 1 Jun 19 $2,295$2,066pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
31 May 19 8 Jun 19 checkmark $2,295$2,066pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
7 Jun 19 15 Jun 19 checkmark $2,295$2,066pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
14 Jun 19 22 Jun 19 $2,295$2,066pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
21 Jun 19 29 Jun 19 $2,295$2,066pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
28 Jun 19 6 Jul 19 checkmark $2,350$2,115pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
6 Sep 19 14 Sep 19 checkmark $2,350$2,115pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
13 Sep 19 21 Sep 19 checkmark $2,350$2,115pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
20 Sep 19 28 Sep 19 checkmark $2,295$2,066pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
27 Sep 19 5 Oct 19 checkmark $2,295$2,066pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
4 Oct 19 12 Oct 19 $2,225$2,003pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now
11 Oct 19 19 Oct 19 checkmark $2,225$2,003pp Early PaymentPay by Jan 31 Request Quote Book Now

Price is per person and is based on two people sharing a twin bedded room. Single rooms are available at a supplement.

Single Room Supplement: from $360 per person

Triple Room Discount: $40 per person

Gratuities: Option to pre-pay gratuities for Travel Director and Driver $88 per person.

Airport transfer: On arrival at Milan Malpensa Airport, transfers will operate at 9:30 am, 1 pm and 3:30 pm to Baveno, Lake Maggiore. Guests arriving later should make their own way to the hotel. Return transfers on the last travel day will arrive at Milan Malpensa Airport at 7:30 am and 10:30 am.

AARP Members are entitled to an exclusive Member Benefit Discount on all Grand European Travel vacations. Plus receive a free travel gift!  Call Toll Free: 1-866-847-3858 for details.

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  • Professional Travel Director Professional Travel Director
  • Sightseeing with Local Experts Sightseeing with Local Experts
  • VIP Access VIP Access
  • WIFI on Coach and in Hotels WIFI on Coach and in Hotels
  • Cultural Enrichment Cultural Enrichment
  • Expertly Selected Hotels Expertly Selected Hotels
  • Hotel Tips Hotel Tips
  • Most Meals Most Meals
  • Personal Flight Options Personal Flight Options

Meal Summary

12 meals: 8 Buffet Breakfasts, 4 Dinners with local wine. 

Insider Experiences

Connect with Locals

  • On the shores of Lake Garda, enjoy a traditional Be My Guest dinner featuring flavors of olive oil, wine and lemons for which the region is famous

Dive into Culture

  • A celebration of all things Ferrari—present and future—the Ferrari Museum in Maranello includes a permanent exhibition dedicated to Formula 1 complete with cars and a pit stop wall

Local Specialist

  • For included sightseeing in Verona, Modena

Sightseeing Experiences

  • City tour in Verona, Modena
  • Orientation of Bergamo, Milan
  • Visit beautiful Lake Maggiore, Lake Como, Lake Garda, Bassano del Grappa, Marostica, the Ferrari Museum in Maranello
  • View the Piazza del Duomo in Bergamo, Juliet's Balcony in Verona, the Cathedral in Modena, the Duomo and La Scala Opera House in Milan
  • See the Roman Arena in Verona
Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

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Reviews

Saturday, October 13, 2018
Trusted Customer
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : The tour director is very responsible and knowledgeable lady who made the trip more enjoyable.
Vacation : The optional experiences were pricey, specially the boat tour of Lake Cumo which did not worth the money.
Saturday, October 13, 2018
Trusted Customer
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : The main tour director, Patrizia was excellent. However, the time constraints in some of the cities forced us to choose between seeing certain attractions or having lunch. Italy is all about food and it's a shame we didn't experience more of it. There was never any time for shopping. If we participated in all of the optional experiences, there was no free time at all. I was extremely disappointed to have missed a visit to the Bolzano Archaeology Museum to see Otzi the ice man due to the long lines and trip schedule. This was to be one of the highlights of my trip that I was really looking forward to. The local guide should have been aware of the possibility of long lines and advised us accordingly. We could have skipped the church and walk in order to see this important exhibit. On another note, the farewell dinner was a disgrace. While the food was barely edible, the service was even worse. Half the people at our table were still waiting for their first course when others had finished. The only saving grace was the tiramisu. I have traveled extensively with various tour groups including Insight, Globus, Monograms, Gate 1, Ritz and Tauck. Of all these groups, only Trafalgar does not give singles their own seat on the bus. Also, a tour group of 48 people is a bit much . For these reasons, I will not use Trafalgar again and will not recommend them to my friends.
Vacation : As noted above, there were some big misses. While it was nice to have 5 days in the same hotel, this meant 4 hours on the bus each of those days. Hotels closer to the towns we visited would have been appreciated.
Sunday, June 3, 2018
Kathryn Williams
Service:
Vacation:
Service rating : The people I talked with were each and every one very kind and helpful in answering my questions and responding to requests. I was rather amazed that there was not much information from GET between sign-up and the "Its time to go pack" (final papers, schedule, suitcase tags). I know Trafalgar actually offered this trip so don't know how much input came from GET but I must give the Tour Director a less than average rating. Too, the selection of the second hotel was not good. The hotel was fine, the location was nott. For a tour advertised as the "best of the Italian Lakes" and not be on or near a lake for 5 of its days (no lake view, no way to get to attractions just isn't right. I could go on but would rather talk to someone about my thoughts on this trip. The service given by GET was good. And, overall the tour was enjoyable--especially the first two days at Lake Maggiore. Those days were totally awesome. The add-on excursion to Bolzano was also well done.
Vacation : A good tour director probably would have made this tour much better. Our tour director counted heads well but that is about all the service he gave. He rambled on--start to give some info abt the places we would see but would go off onto something else When we got to the local we would realize he did not give us a clue as to what to do, what to see, how to get to the most important attractions, etc. A remark he used often was here we are, "Just wander and around and spend money". Mostly we were turned over to local guides for a time then given some time to :wander around and spend money: but each of the destinations had attractions that were either "must see" or a museum or something that would add interest or memories to the visit but we didn't get clues or hints about those. I've been on a number of guided tours. Again I kept expecting more and getting less than expected from this tour director. He wasn't bad or offensive, he was just there. This tour offered "special discoveries" or little extra surprise moments for the tour participants--little extras the tour guide would basically include---there was not a single such happening on this tour. Now, Did I have a good time. Yes. Did I enjoy Italy? I did. The places on the tour for the most part were worth seeing/doing. Several of the local guides were not particularly good. But I appreciated their efforts. And, I was glad to be there.
Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

Print Itinerary
  • U.S. citizens traveling to Italy must have a current passport that is valid for six months beyond the conclusion of their trip. You can find information on how to apply for a passport here, and how to renew a passport here. No visa is required for U.S. citizens entering Italy.

  • The currency in Italy is the Euro (€). While it’s a good idea to bring some euros for when you first arrive in Italy, you’ll usually find a better exchange rate when you arrive in your destination.  The most convenient way to obtain cash is to use your ATM card at local banks in Italy. We recommend you also bring a valid credit card for purchases while you are traveling.  It is important that you inform your financial institutions of your travel plans before you leave home so they don’t flag your purchases as potentially fraudulent charges.

  • While Italy is most famous for pizza and pasta, few travelers are aware of just how varied the country’s culinary offering actually are. In fact, each of the 20 regions has its own distinctive cuisine. Traditionally, lunch (pranzo) is the most substantial meal of the day. A full meal consists of antipasto (starter), a primo piatto (pasta, rice or soup), a secondo piatto (meat or fish) with a side, or contorno (vegetable or salad), then frutta (fresh fruit). Finish with espresso and maybe a limoncello or grappa.  Wine is usually served with the meal, accompanied by mineral water. Tap water is safe to drink, but not always tasty. We recommend you buy bottled mineral water. ‘Acqua non potabile’ means the water is not safe to drink.  Find out about some local specialties to try in Italy’s top destinations below.

  • In Italy, the weather changes very quickly, with temperatures varying from morning to night. We suggest bringing a variety of lightweight clothing items that can be layered to save space in your suitcase and give you more options for how to dress. Keep in mind that your shoulders and knees should be covered while visiting religious sites. For more helpful information please refer to our Packing Tips & Packing List.

  • At bars and restaurants, tipping is less common or generous as in the U.S. When dining out, it’s appropriate, although not required, to leave an extra euro or two for your waiter.

    At the end of your guided vacation, it’s customary to offer your motor coach driver and Travel Director a gratuity. We recommend €3.00 per person/per day for your driver and €5.00 per person/per day for your Travel Director.  Recommended gratuity for a Local Host and Local Specialist is 1-2 euros per person, paid at the conclusion of each guided visit.  A convenient option is to prepay your tips before your departure.

  • Baggage on our trips is restricted to one large suitcase per person with dimensions not exceeding 30x19x10 inches and a maximum weight of 50 pounds. You are also permitted one piece of hand luggage, which should be small enough to fit under your coach seat or on the small overhead shelf compartment. Please note that luggage with an adjustable handle and wheels will not fit in the overhead compartment of the coach. Hotel porterage is included in your vacation.

  • You will need to be comfortable on your feet, walking and standing for up to three hours in various weather conditions.  All of our vacations involve walking, often on cobblestone and uneven surfaces in historic city centers.  In order to get the most out of your vacation you need to be able to comfortably walk 1-3 miles unassisted in one day, be in good condition and be able to keep pace with the group. 

    If you need any medications, it is important that you bring enough to last you the whole trip and keep them in your carry-on bag while you travel.

  • We highly recommend our optional Travel Protection Plan, which allows you to cancel for any reason up to 24 hours before departure. The plan also includes trip interruption, baggage loss or delay, and medical and emergency assistance. Click here for a summary of coverage details, terms and conditions.

Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

Optional Experiences are subject to change. Your Travel Director will supply you with a final list of Optional Experiences available on your trip. Optional Experiences cannot be booked online; they can be purchased during your trip through your Travel Director.

Italian Lakes

Discover Lake Como

Adult Price: €38.00

Enjoy views of elegant villas and gardens as you cruise with your Local Specialist along Lake Como, one of the most beautiful spots in the Italian Lake District.

Italian Lakes

Discover The Borromean Islands

Adult Price: €41.00

We've organised a private launch to take you to the beautiful islands of Lake Maggiore. Here you'll see the Isola Madre, the Isola dei Pescatori, and on the Isola Bella we visit the magnificent palace of the Borromean Princes (this optional is only operated between mid March and the end of October).

Italian Lakes

Lake Garda Discovery

Adult Price: €43.00

Discover the largest of the Italian Lakes as we take a route along its scenic shoreline. You’ll get to enjoy views of mountains, lush countryside and its glistening blue waters as you cross the lake, taking in historical towns along the way.

Italian Lakes

Bolzano and the Dolomite Mountains

Adult Price: €62.00

Come with us and follow the Adige Valley to Bolzano, capital of the southern part of the Tyrol. Here you'll have time to shop in the arcaded streets, take a cable car to the top of the Renon and ride on the century-old Tramvia, or Funivia in the local parlance, where you can enjoy incredible panoramas from this famous mountain plateau.

Lake Garda

Spectacular Countryside and Dinner

Adult Price: €65.00

We take a scenic drive from Lake Garda to the tiny village of Borghetto on the banks of the River Mincio, famous for it’s medieval bridge and ancient water mills. In this idyllic location, we'll enjoy a delicious meal of local specialities with wine and soft drinks included.

Milan

Treasures Of Milan

Adult Price: €45.00

Join our Local Specialist at the impressive Castello Sforza museum, where you’ll see the 'Pieta of Rondanini' by Michelangelo, among other great works. Your tour finishes with a visit to the world renowned 'La Scala' opera house and museum.When La Scala or the Castello is unavailable, you’ll visit the Museum of Milan.

Request a Quote
  • 30 Day Refund Guarantee

    We promise you’ll enjoy a stress-free travel experience from the minute you start your vacation planning or we’ll refund your deposit. Make your reservation with a $350 deposit. If you change your mind for any reason within 30 days of booking, we’ll offer you a full refund.

  • Add air to your reservation

    Let our Air Specialists handle your air reservations. We have direct access to the most current airfare routes and prices, so you’ll get the best value available when we book your flights. We never charge a booking fee and you’ll enjoy the flexibility to pay for air 60-90 days prior to departure.

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