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Varese
Travel Guide

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

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.

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
Free cancellationReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is £65 per night from 1 May to 2 May
Situated on a lake, this spa hotel is within 3 miles (5 km) of Lake Varese, Villa Recalcati and Motta Plaza. Church of Saint Anthony Abbot and Estense Palace ...
4.2/5Excellent! (32 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 20 Sep 2020

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
The price is £77 per night from 21 May to 22 May
Located in Casbeno, this hotel is within 1 mile (2 km) of Masnago Castle, Estense Palace and Villa Mylius. Corso Matteotti and Broletto Courtyard are also within ...
4.4/5Excellent! (916 reviews)
Lovely but disappointing
"The hotel was beautifully presented, the room was lovely and the bed very comfortable. The gardens and pool area fabulous. However, dining at the hotelier it down, dinner was very slow, needing to ask several times for menu and again to order, they never returned to take our dessert order. Breakfast ..."

Reviewed on 27 Aug 2020

Palace Grand Hotel Varese
UNAHOTELS Varese
UNAHOTELS Varese
4 out of 5
Via Albani 73, Varese, VA
Get Rates
This family-friendly Varese hotel is located in the suburbs, within 1 mi (2 km) of Villa Menafoglio Litta Panza and Collection, Corso Matteotti and Villa Mylius. ...
4.4/5Excellent! (480 reviews)
"It's location is best for visiting the lakes. Beautiful hotel. Good breakfast."

Reviewed on 26 Oct 2019

UNAHOTELS Varese
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.
Alloggio di 85 mq in Villa D'epoca con Parco
Alloggio di 85 mq in Villa D'epoca con Parco
Varese, via Generale A. Cantore, 31, Varese, Lombardy
Situated on a lake, this historic villa is within 3 miles (5 km) of Lake Varese, Church of Saint Anthony Abbot and Motta Plaza. Church of San Giuseppe and Corso ...
Alloggio di 85 mq in Villa D'epoca con Parco
Casa Cocca Very Central Apartment in Varese
Casa Cocca Very Central Apartment in Varese
24 Via Como, Varese, Lombardy
Located in Downtown Varese, this holiday home is within a 5-minute walk of Baptistery of Saint John, San Vittore Basilica and Corso Matteotti. Church of the ...
Casa Cocca Very Central Apartment in Varese
Luxury Apartment Located 500 Metres From Historic Centre and Railway Station
Luxury Apartment Located 500 Metres From Historic Centre and Railway Station
Via Garibaldi, 1, Varese, Lombardy
The price is £148 per night from 4 May to 5 May
Located in the centre of Varese, this family-friendly apartment building is within a 10-minute walk of Church of the Madonnina in Prato, Corso Matteotti and ...
5/5Exceptional! (4 reviews)
Very pleased!!
"The apartment was larger than the pictures indicated. Very well furnished and maintained. Dry clean. The owner had the kitchen nicely stocked with snacks, coffee, water, etc. She thought of everything. Extremely accommodating. I highly recommend her city tour also. I can’t emphasize enough how pleasant ..."

Reviewed on 16 Oct 2019

Luxury Apartment Located 500 Metres From Historic Centre and Railway Station
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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Reviews of Varese

4.5

Top Destination

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5/5 - Excellent

Verified traveller

25 Feb 2020

Great shopping, especially in the sales! Fantastic restaurants and bars, plenty of choice for both. Everything is easily accessible

4/5 - Good

Verified traveller

23 Feb 2019

Dining time is too short

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