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Lake Como & The Bernina Express

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Prepare to fall in love with the undeniable ambiance of Lake Como on this 8-day expedition that explores the sights and tastes of the region in charming lakeside towns and aboard the storied rails of the Bernina Express.

Travel among a group of like-minded travelers led by a professional tour manager

2024 Tour code: GR-CMLA-24

About the tour

Set within the foothills of the Italian Alps lies Lake Como, a gorgeous deep blue body of water in the heart of Italy's lake district. This lake is the third largest in the country and is surrounded by romantic villages rife with history. Stunning waterside villas meet cobbled streets and lovely squares, and glamorous amenities meet small-town charms time and time again. Experience these things firsthand when you explore Lake Como on this fantastic journey out of Cadenabbia di Griante, Italy.

Your four-star hotel awaits on the shores of Lake Como. Using this luxurious inn as a base, spend your days enjoying the nearby towns and their offerings. Tour Lenno, including its Villa Balbianello. Hunt truffles in Bellagio and then work alongside a chef to create a delicious meal using them. Venture to St. Moritz aboard the Bernina Express, visit the fortified Citta Alta in Bergamo, and sip wine in a fantastic cellar in Gandosso. But the fun does not end here. Instead, cruise across Lake Como to medieval Varenna and visit the timeless destination of Menaggio. Live like an Italian and gain a genuine appreciation for life and its gifts on this thoughtful expedition.


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What’s included


Day 1 – Lake Como

Your Italian adventure begins as you make your way to the Grand Hotel Cadenabbia, where you will meet your tour manager and fellow travelers. Situated on the shores of Lake Como, this four-star hotel is our base for the next seven nights. Overnight Cadenabbia di Griante. 

  • Dinner
Day 2 – Lenno & Villa Balbianello

We cruise to Lenno, sailing past striking vineyards and olive groves. On arrival, we visit Villa Balbianello, a star of the silver screen, having been used in the Star Wars and James Bond films. Perched on a wooded peninsula, this striking 18th-century mansion boasts a sophisticated façade and beautiful terraced gardens. We explore on an insightful guided tour, followed by free time. You could either spend another hour or so at the villa or visit charming Lenno. The town is home to some irresistible cafés and the Baptistery di San Giovanni, which dates to the 11th century. Overnight Cadenabbia di Griante. 

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 3 - Bellagio

Sailing to picturesque Bellagio, at the tip of the peninsula which divides the 'legs' of the lake, we head into the woods overlooking Lake Como to enjoy the centuries-old tradition of truffle hunting. Joined by a local chef and his specially trained dog, we search for truffles and other mushrooms before savoring an expertly prepared meal made using our findings. There's free time in Bellagio afterwards before our return journey across the lake. Perhaps wander the old-world streets that wind away from the main square, Piazza San Giacomo. Overnight Cadenabbia di Griante. 

  • Breakfast, Lunch
Day 4 – Bernina Express

Today we embark upon an unforgettable journey on the Bernina Express. The incredible line is over 100 years old and is recognized by UNESCO for the feat of civil engineering used to create it, as well as the stunning scenery through which it travels. We journey in panoramic carriages, admiring idyllic flower-filled meadows as we wind toward St Moritz, where you have time to explore. St Moritz is one of Switzerland's most iconic resort towns and is synonymous with glamour; maybe window-shop at the luxury boutiques or relax with a coffee and watch the world go by. Overnight Cadenabbia di Griante. 

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 5 - Cadenabbia

Enjoy a free day in Cadenabbia di Griante. Split into two parts, with Cadenabbia right by the lake and Griante located a little higher in the hills above, why not visit nearby Villa Carlotta? Built in the 18th century and perched between the water and surrounding mountains, it boasts pretty gardens and artworks including sculptures by Canova. Or you could find a quaint café in which to unwind with some delicious Italian cuisine or a traditional coffee. Overnight Cadenabbia di Griante. 

  • Breakfast
Day 6 – Bergamo

We take a coach to Bergamo, nestled in the foothills of the Alps, for a visit to the 'Città Alta', or 'upper town'. Here, we take a guided tour of the Renaissance buildings, encircled by 17th-century walls. This afternoon, we continue to the DOC wine region of Valcalepio. Our destination is Gandosso, where we visit a local wine estate set in a beautiful rural spot surrounded by greenery. We're treated to a traditional lunch as well as an introduction to the local wine production, during which we tour the wine cellars ahead of a delicious tasting. Overnight Cadenabbia di Griante. 

  • Breakfast, Lunch
Day 7 - Varenna & Menaggio

Boarding a boat to Varenna, on the lake's eastern shores, enjoy free time to explore the quaint cobbled streets and jumble of narrow alleyways that bring to life the village's medieval history. Next, we continue to Menaggio, a stunning small town that epitomizes the charms of Italy. Stroll along the pretty lakeside promenade, perhaps enjoying some ice cream from a local gelateria, or soak up the atmosphere in the timeless piazza. Overnight Cadenabbia di Griante. 

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 8 – Return Home

Your tour concludes after breakfast this morning where you are free to depart Cadenabbia and Lake Como for your onward journey. 

  • Breakfast

Additional information

Departure times

Departure times vary based on selected rail vacation. This information will be provided in your final documents. For more information please speak with your rail specialist.

Mobility information

Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular vacation with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.


Grand Hotel Cadenabbia, Cadenabbia di Griante

Grand Hotel Cadenabbia, Cadenabbia di Griante

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