WHAT TO DO IN NORTHERN ITALY


Most people head south when they arrive in Italy – for the sun, sea and heat. Yet there is a magnificent Italy waiting to be discovered in the North. Here’s our top picks on what to do:

DOLOMITE MOUNTAINS


This area has UNESCO World Heritage status for a very good reason. The jagged soaring mountains are unlike any alpine area we’ve ever been in – it is like arriving on a moon. The area is full of hiking tracks, and probably one of the most spectacular is a walk up to the Vajolet Towers. (follow the link for all you need to know on doing the walk)

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BLUE LAKES


In the Dolomites, you’ll also find stunning lakes everywhere – such as Lago di Carezza. The lakes are incredibly blue and clear because of the clean alpine waters, and an incredible volcanic filtering system. These lakes have to be seen to be believed.

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CLEAR RIVERS


Some of the lakes are protected, and you can’t swim in them. But we found the clearest swimming spot in the region – called the Emerald Pools. Head to a little village called Trimonti di Sopra and look for a sign near the church with an arrow pointing to the “Pozze Smeraldine” (Emerald Pools in Italian). You’ll spend all day heating up on the riverbed – then enjoying a refreshing dip in the clearest water you’ve ever swum in.

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UNFORGETTABLE VENICE


Venice is at the top of most lists involving Italy and, rightly so. If you’re considering a visit to Nothern Italy without a visit to Venice – think again. There’s nothing on earth that matches it, and everyone should visit the city built on the water at least once in their lives.

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CINQUE TERRE


This breathtaking collection of 5 ancient fishing villages dotted along the rugged coastline is a must do. Connecting them is one of the most romantic walks in the world, which can be done in one day, but is best enjoyed over 3 days. Stay at a different village each night – and sample their local icecream and pizza!

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