Wanderlust Wednesday // Northern Italy Part 1- Lake Como

I visited Northern Italy in the spring and had a truly amazing time. Although this trip was a couple months ago, Pearls and Parm wasn't up and running then, so I want to take some time now to share our itinerary, my thoughts and recommendations, and some amazing photos.{photo overload below!}

My boyfriend and I had both been to Italy before and we wanted to visit new-to-us places on this trip. We flew into Milan and spent time in Lake Como, Verona, the countryside of Modena and Bologna. We also managed to sneak in short trips to Bergamo and Parma, towns I hope to explore more in depth one day. Today I’ll recap our three days in Lake Como, next week Verona and a vineyard we stayed at in Modena, and finish with Bologna.

The beauty of Lake Como truly blew me away. I knew it would be a gorgeous part of the world, but it was more beautiful, unique and peaceful than I was expecting. I debated for a long time over what part of Lake Como to stay in and was very happy with our choice to stay in Bellagio. I'm no expert, but from my experience, Bellagio has more going on, more shops and 'night life' than the other mid-lake towns. Ferries run frequently, so no matter where you stay it's easy to jaunt around.

Hotel Florence via
As soon as we landed in Milan we headed right to Lake Como via the train. This was two train rides, airport to Milan, and Milan to Varenna, a town in Lake Como. From Varenna we hopped on the ferry to Bellagio. We stayed at the Hotel Florence, which I highly recommend for its unbeatable location right on the water, delicious breakfast, and colorful Italian decor. I’ll never forget watching the sun set over the lake from the hotel’s bar right on the water’s edge.

Dawn view from our hotel window
Pink house in Bellagio. When can I move in?
The beauty of Lake Como is truly astounding. We spent most of our time just wandering around, snapping photos and taking it all in. Our first day we walked around Bellagio and discovered a tiny fishing area called Pescallo.


One of my favorite excursions was to Tremezzo, a short ferry ride away from Bellagio. In Tremezzo, we toured the stunning Villa Carlotta and its magnificent gardens, which had a citrus covered canopy.

View of the Lake from Villa Carlotta

Tremezzo is also home to the Grand Hotel Tremezzo, a luxurious hotel with a floating pool in the lake. The GHT is beautifully decorated, with brightly colored furniture and a sprawling terrace to enjoy a glass of wine while watching the lake and pool below. I spent an afternoon at the GHT spa and by the pool, highly recommend!

Bar inside GHT

GHT Pool

On our last night in Lake Como we took the ferry to Varenna for dinner. Varenna is located on a steep hill, and is sleepier than Bellagio, but so incredibly gorgeous. I kept joking that you could close your eyes and not take a bad picture!


Where: Lake Como, mid-lake region
Stay: Hotel Florence, Bellagio
Do: Villa Carlotta in Tremezzo, visit the fishing area of Pescallo in Bellagio, ferry to Varenna and climb the steep steps up the town to eat dinner at a café, shop around the adorable boutiques in Bellagio


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