2The Northern Lakes

Want to mix road tripping with a little romance?

Head to Italy’s postcard-perfect Lake District and spend a week cruising leisurely from east to west, stopping to explore a new lake each day: Garda first, then Iseo, Como, Lugano, and Maggiore.

Where to stop: Villa Melzi in Bellagio on Lake Como for its dreamy, azalea-filled gardens; the 17th-century Villa Carlotta in Tremezzo for its sculptures and equally Instagram-worthy gardens; Castello Scaligero in Sirmione for its sweeping views over Lake Garda; Isola Bella on Lake Maggiore for its Baroque Palace and lovely fishing village.

Where to eat: Market Place in Como serves up great seasonal cuisine that’s simple yet sophisticated. Silvio, a Bellagio mainstay since 1919, is known for its terrific seafood, caught fresh from the lake daily.
Where to stay: The sleek and newly-Hot Listed Il Sereno; the iconic and palatial Grand Hotel Tremezzo; or the lovely, low-key RivaLago on the quieter (and significantly more cost-effective) Lake Iseo. Click the next ARROW to see the next image!