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Out of town escapes

Some suggestions for a romantic weekend or for sport, nature, art, culture, wellness and taste.

Villages, islands and spa, less than an hour from the city. From the stunning Certosa near Pavia to the Castello di Soncino.  

1. In San Pellegrino Terme (Bergamo), the Art Nouveau setting and the allure of a new spa: 6,000 square metres of wellness.

2. The largest freshwater island. Iseo, the lake of fishermen. In Monte Isola (Brescia).

3. Crazy for Lake Como. Silence, villas, stone houses and olive groves. George Clooney has his lakeside home in Laglio.

4. A trip to Soncino (Cremona), among the battlements of one of the most beautiful villages in Lombardy, long disputed between Lombardy and Veneto.

5. A trip to the Castello di Vezio in Varenna (Lecco) to imagine the wonders of court life, among drawbridges, owls and falconers.  

6. An aristocratic home has its fascination, today as in the past. The address: Palazzo Lamberti, Codogno (Lodi).

7. If only to see the Teatro all'Antica of Scamozzi, Sabbioneta (Mantua), ideal town and UNESCO site, is well worth visiting.

8. Palazzo Arese Borromeo in Cesano Maderno (Monza e Brianza) is an ancient country house featuring amazing perspectives, vaulted ceilings and an underground ice house.

9. The Certosa di Pavia is a testimony of the grandeur of Gian Galeazzo Visconti. From the magnificent façade with statues, reliefs and carvings, to works by Perugino, Bergognone and Luini.

10. Among the remains of a past ice age: geological wonders and boulders of cyclopean dimensions in the Parco delle Marmitte dei Giganti (Giants' Potholes Park) in Chiavenna (Sondrio).

11. In Leggiuno, explore Santa Caterina del Sasso, a hermitage carved into the stone overhanging the lake. Half an hour from Varese. 

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