Italian Lakes: Hike, Bike & Kayak

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4.6 . Excellent
95%
Travel Style: Array Full on
Physical Level: All or most of day hiking or biking, hills included. Moderate
Lodging Level: Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels. Value (3*)
8 days
From: $ 2,390 $ 299 / day
Checking price

Overview

Highlights (Bullets)

  • Spend your time immersing yourself into the tranquil lifestyle of Lake Como and Garda – admiring the views, getting active by the lake, and indulging in regional food and wine.
  • Explore the beautiful villages, estates and gardens dotted around Lake Como, meandering the lake by ferry. Feel the fanciful vibe on the grounds of Bellagio's grand Villa Melzi, then see the shore from a kayak.
  • Leave your bags at Milan’s central station and explore the wonders and urban history of this magical city while in transit between Como and Garda.
  • Consider the option of taking a cable car up Monte Baldo – with varying degrees of mountain hikes available, or just to sit at the mountaintop restaurant for lunch, this experience gets you sky high above Garda.
  • Have plenty of free time lakeside in Garda, perhaps taking up one of the water sports on offer or visiting nearby wineries in the Bardolino region.

Short Description

Indulge your appetite and treat the senses on this exquisite active journey through Italy’s Lakes district. Hike the forested paths around Lakes Como and Garda, cycle through the Dolomite highlands and simply admire the stunning views at every turn. Ferry to and fro between lake villages and charming villas, clamber about the crumbling ruins of medieval castles and spend a day experiencing the cosmopolitan atmosphere of Milan. Idyllic in setting, laid-back in lifestyle, and a gastronomist’s delight, this jaunt through one of Europe’s most charming regions shouldn’t disappoint. And if it somehow does, take the issue up with one of the local residents – like Sting or George Clooney.

Style Small group tour
Spend most of the time outdoors. Common trip themes and activities include cycling, hiking, kayaking, whitewater rafting.
Itinerary Focus Active
Mid-range budget with accommodations ranging from comfortable lodges, guesthouses, and homestays to three star hotels.
Lodging Level Value (3*)
Flight & Transport Inclusions All internal ground transport
Start City Como
End City Garda

Destinations

Italy Switzerland

Attractions & Cities Visited

Lake Como Lake Garda

Activities & Interests

Adventure & Adrenaline Hiking Trekking

Age Requirement

15-99

No single supplement
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Itinerary

Day 1 Lake Como

Buongiorno! Welcome to Italy. Please make your own way to the hotel. No activities are planned for today until tonight's important welcome meeting at 6 pm, so you can arrive at any time. If you arrive early why not take a wander around the historic town of Como and enjoy a drink in the main square or along the lake shore. After tonight's group meeting the evening is free, so perhaps go for dinner at one of the nearby traditional restaurants with your new travel companions.

Day 2 Kayaking & Hiking in Bellagio / Lake Como

Lake Como (Lago di Como) is an area of stunning beauty full of unique and evocative landscapes. Discover the central part of Lake Como by boat. You’ll head ashore in Bellagio, the 'pearl of the lake', situated on the Punta Spartivento, where the two arms of Lake Como meet. Embark on a scenic hike through the delightful countryside, past the charming fishing village of Pescallo and other scenic hamlets. Back down at the lake discover the grand estate of the Villa Melzi, which is set into gardens filled with rare and exotic plant life. Next is a kayaking adventure which brings you all around the headland of Bellagio. Back in Como take a stroll through the medieval town centre, before enjoying a drink in the main square or along the lake shore, if you’d like.

Day 3 Lake Como

Today is a free day for you to explore the area. There are many options to spend a day in Como: Explore Villa Olmo or Villa D’Este. Travelling by boat to other lakeside villages in this southern part of the lake is also a worthwhile experience. Cernobbio is surrounded by beautiful villas and has a wonderful relaxed atmosphere. For the hikers there are several nice walks in the near surroundings such as the trail network in the state park of Spina Verde. Another possibility is to travel into Switzerland and hike Monte Generoso. This is an amazing walk which includes a train ride on Europe's oldest tourist train. Views stretch from Lake Lugano to Lake Como – bellissimo!

Day 4 Milan / Lake Garda

This morning, take a train to one of Italy’s major hubs: Milan. You’ll stop here for a few hours to explore; you will be able to store your luggage at a locker room at the railway station. Take the metro into the city centre, where your leader will offer an orientation walk to get your bearings. Then, it is up to you to explore Milan at your own pace. Explore the city's historic centre, visit the city's most famous building, the Gothic Duomo, and walk between its rooftop sculptures, admiring the views and the stunning Gothic terrace. If you would like to see Leonardo da Vinci’s masterpiece, The Last Supper, be sure to organise tickets well in advance. Your group will have a designated meeting time and place in the afternoon to regroup, then catch a train to the southern end of Lake Garda. There, you will transfer to a bus and arrive in the township of Garda. With a charming classic feel, this will be your base for the next few nights.

Day 5 Hiking at Lake Garda

Good morning from idyllic Lake Garda. Complete with its rocca (rock), a monastery and the remains of a medieval castle, the town of Garda is an enchanted place to explore on foot. Take a walking tour through the town before climbing up towards the rocca and the abbey, and after a steep ascent, be wowed with beautiful views over the lake. The rest of the day is as clear as the crisp air of the Italian Lakes. Being on the southern end of the lake and in one of the major villages, there is so much to see and explore In Garda. Perhaps book into one of the watersports on offer – this is a common holiday destination for locals, with sailing, windsurfing and stand-up paddle boarding all on offer.

Day 6 Biking in Riva del Garda / Malcesine / Lake Garda

Take a bus to the northern and more alpine side of the lake to Riva del Garda, passing many photogenic villages en route. On arrival, embark on a bike ride along the shores of Lake Garda, taking in the glorious scenery of the glistening lake in front of you and the towering Alps behind you. Depending on weather, fitness and interest of the group several rides are possible. The ride out of Riva del Garda is mostly flat. Explore the remains of WWI in a place which until 100 years ago was the border between Austria and Italy. In the afternoon hop on a boat to the beautiful town of Malcesine with time for you to explore or just take in the lake views. Return to your accommodation in Garda by local bus in the late afternoon.

Day 7 Hiking at Lake Garda

After breakfast head down to the lake and follow the lake shore to Punta San Vigilio and on to Torre del Benaco. Return to Garda by public bus. You may wish to spend your afternoon relaxing by the lake. Otherwise, get on the water by taking the ferry to another one of the picturesque towns dotted around the lake. Sirmione is a good choice – a small peninsula that juts out of the southern end of the lake, full of restaurants, bars and spas. Inland from Garda, there are a selection of wineries which are also an ideal place to visit today.

Day 8 Lake Garda

After breakfast this morning you are free to leave the Italian Lakes district at any time. From Garda you can travel by bus to Verona, from where it is easy to reach other destinations in Italy by train. If you'd like to stay in the Italian Lakes region, we can organise additional accommodation (subject to availability).

Availability

Checking price
Price From $ 2,390
Price Per Day: $ 299 per day
Checking price
Start DateFinish DateBase PriceAvailability 
May-29-2022Jun-05-2022$ 2,3906 spots left Reserve
Jun-19-2022Jun-26-2022$ 2,6109 spots left Reserve
Jul-03-2022Jul-10-2022$ 2,6358 spots left Reserve
Aug-21-2022Aug-28-2022$ 2,61012 spots left Reserve
Sep-04-2022Sep-11-2022$ 2,61012 spots left Reserve
Sep-11-2022Sep-18-2022$ 2,61011 spots left Reserve
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May-21-2023May-28-2023$ 2,72512 spots left Reserve
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Jul-09-2023Jul-16-2023$ 2,72512 spots left Reserve
Sep-10-2023Sep-17-2023$ 2,72512 spots left Reserve
Sep-17-2023Sep-24-2023$ 2,72512 spots left Reserve
Sep-24-2023Oct-01-2023$ 2,72512 spots left Reserve
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3,955 Intrepid Travel Travel Reviews & Ratings

95%
4.6 out of 5 (100+ reviews)
Excellent 2,971
Great 659
Average 127
Disappointing 63
Terrible 135
Value
4.6
Guide
4.6
Activities
4.6
Lodging
4.6
Transportation
4.6
Meals
4.6

Italian Lakes: Hike, Bike & Kayak

Enjoyable trip!

4.0
Details
Value4.0
Guide4.0
Activities4.0
Lodging4.0
Transportation4.0
Meals4.0
An enjoyable trip, but I was not that enamored of the area...too many tourists!

An enjoyable trip, but I was not

4.0
Details
Value4.0
Guide4.0
Activities4.0
Lodging4.0
Transportation4.0
Meals4.0
An enjoyable trip, but I was not that enamoured of the area...too many tourists!

Company Reviews

Planes, trains, buses... and a felucca !

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Planes, trains, buses... and a felucca !

My trip started in Cairo at the Pharaoh's Hotel. The hotel is just one block from the river Nile with lots of lovely cafes and restaurants lined along the boardwalk. The area is picturesque and a great place to begin my Egyptian adventure!
I met up with my group and we had a briefing from our local guide, Hassaan. The meeting was a great opportunity to get to know my fellow travellers and Hassaan gave us all the essential information on our tour, including teaching us all a few words of Arabic.

This was my third trip to Egypt and my most enjoyable. Previously, I had been on a diving boat from Hurghada and also in the beach resort of Sharm El Sheikh. Both were beautiful but it was easy to miss the depth of culture and history that exists inland along the Nile.

Don’t leave Cairo without sampling some delicious baklava and of course Koshary! The Hotel Baron have a fabulous pastry shop and sell all types of baklava and chocolates, not to mention Giant Ferrero Rocher's, mouthwatering !

This was an unforgettable holiday and for sure I will return to Egypt, only for longer the next time.
Top Tips
• Don’t forget insect repellant for your overnight Felucca trip
• Make a stop at the Off License for your alcoholic beverages. Wine or beer are not widely available but there is no problem to bring your own into the restaurants and enjoy on the train journey.
• Check out the delicious baklava in Simonds and coffee from Abu Auf
• Cairo drivers are crazy, no traffic lights, no rules - beware!
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Where do I start .......

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Where do I start? The whole Egypt experience with Intrepid was superb from beginning to end. We were met at the airport by an Intrepid representative who took hold of our travel documents and whisked us through the airport formalities like we were VIP's. We were waiting for our bags whilst most of the people on our flight were queuing for entry stamps. Bags collected, the representative went with us to the waiting transfer vehicle and accompanied us through the busy Cairo rush hour traffic to our hotel. We'd paid for an pre-night and it would have been nice to have had one of the better "balcony" rooms, but that's a lesson learned for next time - ask first! We met Ramy Hamdy, our guide and the other 6 people in our group the following day. Ramy would be by our side for the whole of the week's tour, and for 2 western blonde women, that was very reassuring. He was practising Ramadan whilst with us, and we felt very guilty at mealtimes, eating whilst he sat watching us. It would have been easy for him to have excused himself whilst we ate, but he made sure we were all OK and had everything we needed. The excursions were well paced in what was quite a hectic tour, but we covered everything you want to do in Egypt, and more. We really felt that we were part of the country, not just visiting it, and Ramy had a lot to do with that. His knowledge, was second to none and he was able to give us insights into the workings of the country that only a resident would know. The "off the beaten track" activities really made this holiday - 24hrs chillaxing on a felucca, sleeping in the middle of The Nile, a visit to a traditional Nubian village and Break fast meal with a resident family there who'd cooked up a real feast, henna tattoos done by the lady of the house, another lunch up a backstreet in the Luxor suburbs that just no-one else would find, camel rides, hot air balloons, the sleeper train too, all experiences to be remembered for a very long time. We left, as we arrived, with personal attention from an Intrepid representative who, again, whisked us through the airport for our flight home. This was the first time we travelled with Intrepid, and there's another trip already booked to look forward to. There's no reason for us to look to another Company for our travel abroad - Intrepid has it all in bucketloads.
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Dubrovnik to Venice - Great Tour

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
This was me and husband's third Intrepid tour (first was India, second was Iceland) We so enjoy the immediate friends made within small groups like this and also the knowledgeable guides in countries we are not familiar with. Our tour guide - Ivance was so much fun. She went above and beyond as a tour guide. Responded to late night issues, assisting with finding activities on free days, and creating a celebration for one of the people on our trip for their birthday. All restaurant recommendations were top notch.
There was a slight mix up with our transport when arriving in Dubrovnik. Our flight was delayed, cancelled, and while I was able to communicate the change in itinerary we somehow still missed our ride. However, after emailing Intrepid and explaining we tried to call the emergency number, they reimbursed us for our payment for the transfer as well as the taxi we ended up having to take. This was our first time to the Balkans and were were so happy that we had the most amazing group and tour guide. This was our first big trip since 2018 (due to covid) and we could not have chosen a better one.
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Premium Jordan

5.0
Details
Value5.0
Guide5.0
Activities5.0
Lodging5.0
Transportation5.0
Meals5.0
Itinery was very varied, ancient ruins, amazing food, the Dead Sea, Petra hiking then Wadi Rum.

Mohammad was a great leader, appreciate him opening up about his personal life stories and experiences.
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Details

Flight & Transport Inclusions

All internal ground transport Train,Boat,On foot,Kayak,Bicycle

Group Size

Small Group - 24 max

Maximum Number of People in Group: 12

Accommodations

Hotel (7 nights)

Guides

All Intrepid group trips in Europe are accompanied by one of our local European group leaders. ’Local’ in this context means a leader who is European or lives in Europe. The aim of the group leader is to take the hassle out of your travels and to help you have the best trip possible. Intrepid endeavours to provide the services of an experienced leader however, due to the seasonality of travel, rare situations may arise where your leader is new to a particular region or training other group leaders. Your leader takes care of logistics, will provide information on the places you are travelling through, offer suggestions for things to do and see, recommend great local eating venues and introduce you to our local friends. While not being guides in the traditional sense you can expect them to have a broad general knowledge of the places visited on the trip, including historical, cultural, religious and social aspects. At Intrepid we also aim to support local guides in the individual cities or locations we travel to. If you are interested in delving deeper into the local culture at a specific site or location then your leader can recommend an optional local guide service in most of the main destinations of your trip.

Age Notes :

Min. Age: 15

Max Age: 99

Additional Information

Finish point

  • Hotel Bisesti
  • Corso Italia, 34/36 37016 Garda (VR)
  • Garda
  • ITALY
  • Phone: +39 00457255766

Trip ID#:

intrepid-ZGXI

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