Varese, located a few kilometres from Milano Malpensa International Airport, is famous for its natural beauty. The city, nestled in the mountains, graced by the picturesque lake named after it and by lush vegetation, is surrounded by nature and is for this reason known as "the garden city".
A walk in the old town is a must! We also recommend a trip to the "Sacro Monte di Varese" ("Sacred Mount of Varese").
It is a devotional complex consisting of 14 chapels, a sanctuary and a crypt. The construction of this pilgrimage place began in the 17th century as a work of popular evangelization. The itinerary winds along the Via Sacra for about two kilometres.
An excursion to the Sacro Monte is a great way to combine a sporting activity with a spiritual and cultural excursion! At the end of the route you will enter the small village of Santa Maria del Monte, where you can treat yourself to a short foodbreak before the descent.
Not only antiquities and excursions, though. Varese is also the perfect destination for contemporary art lovers. The #placetobe is the eighteen-century Villa Panza, which in 1956 was acquired by Count Giuseppe Panza di Biumo. The nobleman collected in his house many works of art, to the point of becoming the greatest collector of contemporary American art in the world. In addition, he invited famous artists to stay at his villa, in order to transform some of the rooms into art works, such as Robert Irwin's light installations, providing a new aesthetic sense to the building. After the Count's death the Villa became a property of FAI (Nationa Trust for Italy).
- In Varese there are many pastry shops of a certain level, we recommend a brioche (better if Venetian with cream) from Buosi in Piazza Beccaria, 6. Here you can drink the cult hot drink of the city: the buosino, a delicious blend of coffee and chocolate that will make you start your day with the right energy!
- The Basilica di San Vittore, with its neoclassical facade and baroque interior offers a must-see architectural contrast not to be missed.
- The so-called Bernascone, the 75 meters-high bell tower next to the Basilica, is built in Baroque style as well.
ANECDOTES AND CURIOSITIES
Varese is the hometown of the famous high fashion brand Missoni.