Varese

Travel Guide
Estense Palace which includes a square or plaza, landscape views and a small town or village

The palace, basilica and castle of this enchanting city north of Milan lie between the Campo dei Fiori mountain range and Lake Varese.

Near Milan in northern Italy is Varese, a picturesque city surrounded by mountains and lakes. It is known for its historical landmarks, including a basilica, a palace and a castle. See the Campo dei Fiori mountain range on one side of the city and Lake Varese on the other.

In the city center, visit the 16th-century Basilica di San Vittore with an elegant façade full of columns and grand entrances. Atop its baroque bell tower are bells that chime throughout the day. Enjoy the neoclassical design of the basilica’s interior. Admire paintings inside the church by well-known 17th-century local artists. Browse the stores in the shopping area near the church.

Make your way to the baroque Estense Palace, built in 1760 for the duke Francesco III d’Este. Admire the elegant balconies of the pink-and-white buildings now used as the city’s Town Hall and a principal tourist attraction.

Behind the palace, stroll through the Estensi Gardens to see well-kept lawns and hedges. Have a drink or snack at the café on the grounds. Let your kids play at the children’s area or feed the ducks and swans in the lake.

The renovated Masnago Castle on the outskirts of Varese was owned by an aristocratic family in the 1500s. Admire the frescoes on its interior walls and discover historical relics from many different centuries. A guided tour is available.

Visit the Sacro Monte (Sacred Mountain) di Varese just north of the city. This 17th-century religious monument attracts pilgrims from around the world. Photograph the remarkable white building and its picturesque forest backdrop.

Varese is the site of a bitter 19th-century battle with Austrian forces. Now the city’s tranquil charm is the perfect partner for the Milanese urban sprawl and a pleasant escape for outdoor activities.

The city is about an hour’s drive north of Milan. Several railway stations scattered throughout the city provide excellent links to neighboring towns.

Where to stay in Varese

Hotel Horizon Wellness & Spa Resort, BW Signature Collection
Hotel Horizon Wellness & Spa Resort, BW Signature Collection
4 out of 5
Via Giovanni Macchi 61, Varese, VA
The price is NT$2,096 per night from Oct 22 to Oct 22
Situated on a lake, this spa hotel is 0.5 mi (0.8 km) from Lake Varese and within 3 mi (5 km) of Villa Recalcati and Estensi Gardens. Motta Plaza and Church ...
4.3/5 Excellent! (43 reviews)
Quality resort hotel
"We only used this as a stop over on the way to the coast. Wish we could have stayed longer. It is a bit far out of the city to walk but the view over the lake and the quality of this modern hotel made up for it. Would also work as a base for cycling in the region. The measures for the COVID situation ..."

Reviewed on 2020/9/20

Hotel Horizon Wellness & Spa Resort, BW Signature Collection
Palace Grand Hotel Varese
Palace Grand Hotel Varese
4 out of 5
Via Luciano Marana, 11, Varese, VA
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is NT$2,833 per night from Oct 21 to Oct 21
Located in Casbeno, this hotel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Masnago Castle, Estense Palace, and Villa Mylius. Corso Matteotti and Broletto Courtyard are also within ...
4.4/5 Excellent! (949 reviews)
Fabulous
"Always outstanding"

Reviewed on 2021/7/18

Palace Grand Hotel Varese
Hotel Capolago
Hotel Capolago
4 out of 5
via Per Bodio, 74, Varese, VA
The price is NT$2,608 per night from Oct 23 to Oct 23
Situated in a provincial park, this hotel is 0.6 mi (1 km) from Lake Varese and within 6 mi (10 km) of Villa Mylius and Masnago Castle. Lake Comabbio and Lake ...
4.2/5 Excellent! (314 reviews)
"This hotel was FANTASTIC. Varese is a 50~ minute drive from Milan, but we were there for a wedding. Hotel is beautiful and check in was very easy. The rooms are nice with two entrances. Breakfast was great. Buffet style with typical breads, meats, eggs, and fruit. There is a spot for you to drink ..."

Reviewed on 2021/9/26

Hotel Capolago
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.
Kibilù - Residenza Panorama
Kibilù - Residenza Panorama
Via Liguria 26, Varese
Situated in Varese, this apartment building is within 1 mi (2 km) of Masnago Castle and PalaWhirlpool. Tower of Velate and Parco Regionale di Campo dei Fiori ...
Kibilù - Residenza Panorama
Kibilù - Via Giusti
Kibilù - Via Giusti
Via Giuseppe Giusti 12, Varese
Situated in Varese, this apartment building is within 2 mi (3 km) of Church of Saint Anthony Abbot, Mercato, and Church of San Giuseppe. Motta Plaza and Corso ...
Kibilù - Via Giusti
Kibilù - Antica Corte Donizzetti
Kibilù - Antica Corte Donizzetti
Via Donizzetti 4, Varese
Located in Downtown Varese, this apartment building is steps from Corso Matteotti, San Vittore Basilica, and Baptistery of Saint John. Broletto Courtyard and ...
Kibilù - Antica Corte Donizzetti
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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