It’s almost impossible to choose just one place to visit in Italy. After all, the country is made up of 20 different regions, each with its own charm and unique history. So, where should you start? A tour of Northern Italy would be a great way to get a feel of the Italian peninsula. But which region should you visit first?
Top tours of Northern Italy
- Milan, Lake Como, and Lake Maggiore tours
Everybody knows Milan as the fashion capital of the world. The region is home to some of the most famous luxury brands in the world, including recognizable names such as Dolce and Gabbana, Giorgio Armani, Prada, and Versace.
But don’t be fooled. Milan is more than just a first-class shopping district. As an Italian region, it is well-loved for its rich, unforgettable history, as well as world-renowned art pieces and architecture.
For instance, you’ll find da Vinci’s famed masterpiece, The Last Supper, in Milan. In addition, you can visit the beautiful La Scala Opera House, where the likes of Otello, La Wally, and La Pietra del paragone premiered.
Milan is also quite close to elegant lakeside destinations such as Lake Orta, Lake Como, and Lake Maggiore. Lake Como is notably popular among tourists, where you can spend several days lounging around the local restaurants or taking photos of architectural wonders like the Duomo, Broletto, and the Temple of Volta.
- Po Valley Towns food and wine tours
It’s not an Italian vacation until you’ve tasted the country’s world-famous cuisine. One of the best places to visit for authentic Italian food is Po Valley, an area tucked between the peaks of the Alps and the Apennines.
Eating food in Po Valley is a memorable experience, thanks to the refreshing atmosphere and picturesque views. A ten-day tour will allow you to taste every single specialty the valley has to offer, including the Casoncelli, a homemade pasta dish made with meat, grated parmesan cheese, and herbs.
You also shouldn’t forget to try the Malfatti, a dumpling dish filled with spinach and cheese and seasoned with butter and sage. And finally, make sure to have a taste of the Erbazzone, a pie made with a pasta base, filled to the brim with boiled beets, eggs, scallion, onion, garlic, and a hefty serving of Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese.
Other must-try Po Valley specialties include the Polenta e Osei, Bollito Cremona, balsamic vinegar, risotto with sausage, and much more!
- Piedmont castles, truffles, and wines
Feel like a royal at heart? Piedmont is an idyllic region home to historic castles and breathtaking vineyards. And where there are vineyards, there’s wine.
Winemaking in Piedmont dates back to the time of Ancient Greece. Now, the region accounts for 11% of Italy’s DOC wine production, making it the third largest wine producer after Veneto and Tuscany. During your stay, make sure to have a glass or two of the Barolo, the wine of kings. This DOGC wine is made purely of Nebbiolo grapes, resulting in an aromatic combination of red berries, truffles, and leather, pairing wonderfully with traditional Piedmontese bagna cauda and hare meat. You should also taste classic wines such as the Barbaresco, Dolcetti, and Carema.
Lastly, to cap off your stay, experience Piedmont’s very own white truffle hunt, where you can search for the region’s special white nugget. These truffles are the perfect addition to classic Italian dishes like sausage risotto, gnocchi with fontina, and dishes with veal, eggs, cod, and rabbit.
- Verona and Lake Garda tours
Are you a big fan of Shakespeare? No romantic getaway can compare to a tour of Venice, Verona, and Lake Garda. Some of the most famous romance stories are set in these places, from Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet to Woody Allen’s Everyone Says I Love You.
But what makes the Veneto region so romantic? The answer is all up to you! Perhaps you and your special someone would enjoy a relaxing stroll through Verona’s charming streets while taking in the views of ancient castles and towers, or maybe you’d rather spend a day sailing on a gondola across the canals of Venice.
And for an even more exclusive experience, why not take a trip to Lake Garda? A private boat tour across the Northern Italian lake will take about four hours, giving you more than enough time to surprise your significant other or simply spend a private day together.
- The Dolomites ski tours
Have you ever wanted to ski across the Italian Alps? What makes Northern Italy so special is that it is bordered by the Dolomites on the east, giving you access to some of the most famous peaks and ski runs in the world.
A Val Gardena ski tour package will take you atop adventurous peaks, including a portion of the Dolomiti Superski, which covers about 175 kilometers of pistes—perfect for the thrill-seeker.
Of course, you shouldn’t forget to fuel yourself up for a long day, and Val Gardena has no lack of food to try. In Selva, the area’s biggest climb, you’ll find a rich collection of luxurious restaurants that offer both Italian and Austrian dishes.
Plus, if you’re not a big fan of skiing, you don’t need to worry. Val Gardena also has a variety of other activities, including mountain biking, rock climbing, and Nordic walking.
It’s no surprise that Northern Italy is one of the top destinations in Europe. There’s almost no end to what you can do in the area, whether skiing atop the Dolomites during the winter or enjoying a glass of locally produced wine.
But to ensure that you make the most of your stay, consider booking a package tour of Northern Italy with a professional travel operator. Luxury tour providers can help you navigate any region of your choice, providing first-rate services such as full assistance and porterage to and from the airport, private transportation with an English-speaking driver, and certified guides in art cities and archeological parks.
Book your trip now, and don’t miss out on a single experience!