Traveling is the best way to discover the true meaning of beauty, but it is not always necessary to face long journeys in remote and remote countries of the world. The our country is full of spectacular wonders , from Lombardy , considered the most important region of Italy.
territory. Land of conquest of Gauls, Barbarians, Lombards, French and Spaniards, this region reserves great surprises, among protected areas and historical wonders scattered throughout the territory.
So here are 10 places not to be missed if you are in Lombardy.
1 – Milano
The city of Milan needs no introduction, it is a city with a unique charm, full of art, nightlife and opportunities. It is the Italian capital of economy and fashion , while in the cultural sphere it is the main Italian publishing center and is at the top of the world music circuit.
The Cathedral is certainly the main symbol of the city, therefore we recommend that you give it an in-depth visit, climbing up to the terraces to admire a dream panorama (it is advisable to buy the ticket online ). Among the other iconic attractions we mention the Castello Sforzesco , the Teatro alla Scala , the beautiful Galleria Vittorio Emanuele II , theBasilica of Sant’Ambrogio , and above all the Church of Santa Maria delle Grazie which houses the famous Last Supper by Leonardo.
Another site of considerable interest is the monumental cemetery which houses the graves of the most illustrious Milanese citizens, and the Giuseppe Meazza Stadium , known as ” La Scala del calcio “, finally we mention the Arco della Pace , one of the major neoclassical monuments of the city. Among the museums, the Pinacoteca and the Brera Observatory stand out for their importance .
2 – Mantova
Elected in 2016 Italian Capital of Culture , while in 2017 together with other Lombard provinces it was awarded as the European Region of Gastronomy under the name of Eastern Lombardy. In the same year, according to Legambiente, it was the best Italian city for the quality of the environment and life . All this leads tourists to want to visit it during a tour of Lombardy.
Absolutely to visit in Mantua: the Cathedral , the Basilica of Sant’Andrea and the Rotonda di San Lorenzo are the most important churches in the city, while Palazzo Gonzaga deserves a stop among the civil architecture., which by extension of the roofs is the second in Europe surpassed only by the Vatican, and Palazzo Te with the famous room of Cupid and Psyche. In the streets and squares of Mantua there are numerous historic houses, including the House of Rigoletto and that of Mantegna . And again in Piazza delle Erbe there is the Palazzo della Ragione and the Palazzo del Podestà with the Clock Tower .
We also advise you to try the local cuisine, among the typical products you will find bread, salami, agnolini in broth, risotto and the famous sbrisolona.
3 – Bergamo
Bergamo is a perfect mix of history and modernity, marked by the division of the city into the lower and upper areas. The latter in fact hosts most of the most significant and historical monuments, while the Lower Town has been made more modern by some urbanization interventions. The two portions are divided by walls that have been declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2017.
Piazza Vecchia is the most popular part of Bergamo Alta, with the Contarini Fountain , the Palazzo della Ragione and the Civic Tower , called Il Campanone , which still today at 10 pm 100 shots, those that in the past announced the night closing of the gates of the walls. Among the most important churches we mention theCathedral of Sant’Alessandro , the Colleoni Chapel and the Basilica of Santa Maria Maggiore which houses the tomb of the musician Gaetano Donizetti.
The Lower Town is crossed by the Torrente Morta and is the seat of the Municipality, the Prefecture and the Province. Piazza Matteotti is the fulcrum of this area, and the Sentierone is the best known avenue, where the Gaetano Donizetti Theater and the Church of Santi Bartolomeo e Stefano overlook .
4 – Pavia e dintorni
The province of Pavia offers unique and evocative places, the capital city is located along the banks of the Ticino river, just north of the latter’s confluence in the Po.
Among the main attractions of its artistic heritage are the Visconteo Castle , the Basilica of San Pietro in Ciel d’Oro , the Pinacoteca Malaspina and the Duomo .
Food and wine and cultural tourism also finds perfect destinations in the surroundings. Among these is Vigevano , an industrial center of national importance. In the past it was the ” shoe capital “, producing tens of millions of shoes and exporting them all over the world. Today here is theInternational footwear museum . Other characteristic destinations of the Oltrepò Pavese are the villages, such as Varzi , which attracts visitors who love good food to try the Varzi DOP salami, on some occasions it is also possible to visit some cellars used for the seasoning of salami. But also Zavattarello , one of the most beautiful villages in Italy, which with its castle is linked to the powerful Dal Verme family. From its terrace you can admire a breathtaking view of the surrounding area.
5 – Franciacorta
Franciacorta is that hilly area located between Brescia and the southern end of Lake Iseo, perfect to visit in spring, taking advantage of one of the many organized tours available. Rich in vineyards where you can drink excellent wine and taste the typical dishes of the area, it is a must for a food and wine itinerary .
Among the municipalities to visit we recommend Adro, Passirano, Cologne. They have a traditional wine-growing vocation, and together with many others they form a path that leads between ancient abbeys, palaces, castles, medieval towers and other architectures, always paying particular attention to the precious cellars in which the Franciacorta Spumante is produced.
Among the wines and local products to try absolutely there are the Quartirolo Lombardo DOP , the Taleggio DOP , the Extra Virgin Olive Oil Laghi Lombardi DOP and then the Curtefranca DOC . While of traditional dishes we mention the Missoltini Casonsèi , appetizing fish from the lake, beef in oil and baked tench , accompanied with polenta are the top.
6 – Lago di Como: Como, Bellagio, Varenna, Cernobbio, Menaggio
Lake Como is located one hour from Milan and is easily reachable through convenient daily tours that allow you to admire all the main towns that overlook it.
There are many towns and villages that rise on the shores of the lake, one more beautiful and characteristic than the other. Starting from Como itself, with the Duomo which is one of the major cathedrals in northern Italy, and then the Volta Temple , the Lungolago and Villa Olmo . Moreover, most of the boat tours and taxi boats depart from here to nearby towns, including Bellagio and Menaggio. Bellagio is considered the most beautiful village on the lake, here to visit the wonderful Villa Serbelloni and Villa Melzi with their enchanting gardens. Menaggio, on the other hand, is ideal for those who love hiking thanks to the green woods of Val Sanagra , but not least is the village that unfolds on the romantic lakeside promenade. Varenna and Cernobbio are also not to be missed . The first is perfect to visit with your partner, in fact here is the famous Passeggiata degli Innamorati , while in Cernobbio there are other sumptuous villas.
7 – Lago d’Iseo: Iseo, Monte Isola, Lovere, Sulzano
During your tour of Lombardy, a milestone as much as Lake Como is Lake Iseo. In particular the municipalities of Iseo , Lovere and Sulzano . Do not miss the unique and wonderful Monte Isola, a green mountain in the center of the lake that can be explored on foot in two hours or by bike. Right here is Christo’s fantastic catwalk , ” The Floating Piers “, one of the most incredible works of recent times. On top of the island there is also the Sanctuary of the Madonna della Ceriola . Monte Isola is a real village inhabited by just over 1600 people, it can be reached by ferry from Iseo, Lovere or Sulzano.
Lovere, in the province of Bergamo, stands enclosed by walls on a hill and its position offers tourists evocative views of the lake. This village deserves to be visited in particular during the Christmas period when it becomes ” the village of light “, sacred images linked to the Nativity are projected on the facades of the buildings. Sulzano, on the other hand, offers very varied scenarios, from the beaches to the ancient village, from the pristine mountains to the panoramic points from which to admire the Po Valley. But also two trekking itineraries , the Green and the Red.
8 – Lago di Garda: Tremosine, Limone sul Garda, Sirmione
Other wonderful places are given to us by Lake Garda, among postcard landscapes and colorful villages overlooking the water is the perfect destination for summer holidays. Starting from Tremosine , with the Strada della Forra , considered by Winston Churchill the eighth wonder of the world. It is a winding tongue set in the rock that offers those lucky enough to walk it the impression of entering the belly of the mountain, connecting the lake to the Garda villages. Inside the town of Tremosine to see is the Church of San Giovanni Battista and the trenches of the First World War are clearly visible and preserved .
From Limone sul Gardathe most beautiful cycle path in Europe starts, inaugurated in 2018, for fans it is ” the cycle path of dreams “. Today Limone is one of the most popular places on the Brescia coast, famous for its lemon houses and the longevity of its inhabitants, yes, science says it, here you live more.
Another gem that we recommend is Sirmione , a small town in the province of Brescia where you can see the Scaligero Castle , the Grotte di Catullo and Jamaica Beach , one of the most famous beaches in the city.
9 – Valcamonica e Parco dello Stelvio
This enchanting part of Lombardy is excellent to visit both in winter thanks to the numerous ski resorts, and in spring for those who love walking in contact with nature. But it is also a perfect destination for archeology enthusiasts, there are in fact numerous rock engravings recognized as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 1979. The Valcamonica valley is located in eastern Lombardy, bordered by the provinces of Sondrio, Bergamo and Brescia and by Trentino to the east.
In the area there are several parks of national or regional naturalistic interest, including the Stelvio National Park . Here there is a rich faunaIn fact, you can admire many animals that often do not disdain raids even in anthropized areas, from chamois to ibex, from birds such as owls and owls to amphibians and fish in ponds and streams.
There are numerous equipped visitor centers from which it is possible to access the park , those of Lombard interest are: the Torre Alberti information point in Bormio, the Pro Loco of Valdidentro and the Pontedilegno information point.
10 – Valtellina: Livigno, Bormio e Aprica
To immerse yourself again in the natural areas of the region, we finally recommend the Valtellina. Alpine area corresponding upstream of Lake Como. The food and wine sectors are very strong in this area, among the best known products that are produced / consumed here are bresaola, pizzoccheri and the red wine Valtellina Superiore DOCG .
Among the municipalities to visit absolutely there is Livigno , a paradise for lovers of high altitude sports, both in summer and in winter. But that is not all! Livigno is also an ideal place for shopping, there are in fact exclusive boutiques and traditional shops where you can make duty-free purchases. Another place not to be missed is Bormio, famous for its renowned spas. It looks like a small village made up of wooden houses and narrow streets, but there are also 18 ski slopes that stretch for over 50 km. Aprica also deserves a stop , where a folkloric festival is celebrated at the end of February with bell ringers in local costume.
Plan your trip: how to get there and where to sleep
Lombardy, as we have seen, lends itself to various types of travel, you can choose to visit within a week from cities of art to natural areas. Three main airports are available to reach the region : Bergamo-Orio al Serio , Milan-Linate and Milan-Malpensa.
If your travel idea is to stay away from the chaos of the cities and enjoy nature, stay in a location on the shores of some lakes. Like maybe Varenna on Lake Como, or Limone sul Garda.
For a journey that covers a bit of everything, from historic cities to natural places , you can rely on the region’s public transport. Land and initially stay in Milan , then you can reach other cities with Trenord regional trains, intercity buses or a rental car.
Finally, for a mountain holiday , choose places like Tirano or Chiavenna.