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Lombardy holidays

Who is Lombardy suitable for?
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Destination Lombardy is a very attractive and varied region in North Italy. It stretches between the alpine regions of the Swiss border in the north and the lowlands of the Po Valley in the South. The capital city of Lombardy is Milan. A grand and historical place and the country's economic powerhouse, Milan is perhaps best known as one of the European fashion capitals and as the home of Leonardo Da Vinci's The Last Supper. Like all of the regions of Italy, Lombardy boasts a rich and distinctive culinary tradition. There are some excellent vineyards here producing richly flavoured wines and the Gorgonzola and Marscapone cheeses both originate in the region.

The lakes region of Lombardy is a very popular destination with visitors - both Italian and international. Comprising Lake Garda, Lake Como and Lake Lugano, they offer stunning landscapes as well as the opportunity for water sports and excellent hiking routes. The mountainous regions of Lombardy have long been famed for their therapeutic waters and there are still great spa resorts in Livigno, Tonale and Bormio. In the winter months, there is some fantastic skiing to be had in the north of Lombardy in the Valtellina region.
For Singles

When: As a single traveller, you have no constraints on when you travel to Italy. The winters can be quite mild in many parts of Lombardy and you might decide to beat the crowds by travelling in the off season.

Where: Check out Milan, one of the grandest cities in the country and - despite extensive bombing in the war - still an absolute treasure trove. Be sure to see Milan Cathedral, catch an opera at La Scala and see a football match at the San Siro.

Why: Because Milan is one of the most important and exciting cities in the country. Whilst lacking some of the picture postcard prettiness of Florence and Venice, it more than makes up for this with a vibrant contemporary cultural scene and some excellent nightlife.

For Groups

When: Head out to Lombardy in the midsummer months for some glorious Mediterranean sunshine and an unforgettable holiday of outdoors pursuits and fantastic cuisine.

Where: You have to see Lake Como or one of its sister lakes. They boast some of the best scenery anywhere in the country and offer excellent hiking routes and water sports opportunities. Surrounded by gorgeous little towns, they offer excellent restaurants and some fantastic hotels.

Why: Because the lakes of Lombardy offer opportunities for sailing, kite surfing and water skiing. You could go hiking through the hills surrounding the lakes and enjoy some stunning views. There are also a number of golf courses in the region.

For Couples

When: Why not head out to Lombardy in the early summer. You'll miss the bulk of the midsummer school holiday crowds whilst still catching some gorgeous Mediterranean sunshine!

Where: Bergamo is a stunning medieval city in the foothills of the Alps. Comprised of the Citta Bassa and the Citta Alta, it boasts a rich arts heritage and a wealth of fantastic churches, chapels and museums.

Why: Because there can be few things more romantic than a holiday in one of Italy's most immaculately preserved medieval cities. The Piazza Vecchia is renowned for being one of the most beautiful of Italy's public squares and it is a great place to lap up some of the Dolce Vita!

For Families

When: Why not head out to Lombardy in the christmas holidays for a week in the gorgeous ski resorts that neighbour the Swiss border?

Where: Valtellina is formed of three major skiing regions - Alta Valtellina, Aprica Val Malenco and Val Chiavenna. There are some excellent long descents here and a couple of hundred kilometres of pistes.

Why: Valtellina boasts some gorgeous skiing resorts and some fantastic conditions whilst enjoying considerably less crowds than the more well known French and Swiss Alpine resorts.

Weather Lombardy has, broadly speaking, a continental climate with hot summers and cold winters. The variance in temperatures is most marked in the region surrounding Milan where average winter temperatures are at around 1ºC whilst average summer temperatures are in the high twenties. However, due to the hugely variable geography of the region there is a considerable difference in the climactic zones. The Lakes enjoy a much more typically Mediterranean climate with mild winters whilst the northern Alpine regions average in the sub zeros in the winter and less than 20ºC in the middle of summer.
Average monthly Temperature C Average temperature in Lombardy
What to expectLombardy offers a fantastic variety of experiences depending on where you decide to go and at what point in the year. The north offers excellent skiing in the winter and gorgeous spa resorts and vineyards in the summer. Further south, The Lakes are a fantastic place for a summer holiday and are surrounded by quintessentially Italian villas and palazzos. There are ancient and medieval towns and there is the hip and urbane modernity of Milan. Most of all, you can expect some fantastic weather - long and hot summers with clear skies and brilliant sunshine - and some fantastic cuisine of risottos, pastas and delicious local wines.
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