A walking holiday in Italy: discover the most iconic Villas of the Italian lake region!
An Italian lake region walking holiday conjures up images of a romantic and majestic hiking destination, and indeed, you will discover this to be very true as you trace your way back in time, through the Italian Age of Enlightenment, admiring the most amazing botanical gardens, impressive architecture of the palaces and villas, the picturesque lakeside villages and incredible landscapes!
What are the most famous Villas in the Italian lake region, on Lake Como?
These Villas are must-see when enjoying a walking tour in the Italian lake region
The Villa Carlotta
This villa is named after its most famous resident, the Princess Charlotte of Prussia, who received the house from her Aunt as a wedding gift. This Neo-classical palace and its lush botanical garden is considered as one of the most sumptuous lakeside villas in the Italian lake region. The villa was built in 1690 as a holiday home for a rich banker from Milan, Giorgio Clerici. It then fell into the hands of several dynasties, until Marianne of the Netherlands offered it to the Princess Charlotte of Prussia and Georg II Duke of Saxe-Meiningen. Their marriage would last only a few years as Charlotte tragically died due to complications during childbirth. An incredible and opulent lakeside villa, enjoy a walk around the botanical gardens (8 hectares in total), including the terraced Italian gardens, the bamboo garden, the old garden and the 'theatre of greenery' - a guaranteed camera clicking afternoon on your self-guided walking holiday in Italy!
The Villa Balbianello
This perched lakeside villa is an absolute must see on your Italy walking stay. Villa Balbianello was home to Guido Monzino, the first Italian climber to reach the summit of Mount Everest and an avid explorer. He travelled the world and bought back interesting artwork and sculptures that now adorn the villa. As you stroll through the grounds, admiring the stunning gardens and incredible views over the lake, you may find that you are familiar with some of the scenery, for this villa has been used as a backdrop to a few blockbuster films, including the Star Wars saga "The attack of the clones, episode II".
The Villa Melzi
This Neo-classical palace was built by the famous 18th and 19th century architect and sculptor, Giocondo Albertolli for Francesco Melzi d’Eril, an important member of the Cisalpine and Vice-President of the first Republic of Italy and one of the most influential men in Italy at the time. Enjoy a mesmorising stroll through the beautiful botanical gardens, admire the architecture of the villa and discover a rich variety of flora, and of course, soak up the outstanding view over the lake and surrounding landscape.