The city of Varese - also called the garden city due to its natural beauties - boasts a civilisation and history whose roots delve into the mists of time. It’s that of the “water civilisation”, which starts in the 5th millennium BC, as shown by the pile-dwelling ruins surrounding the lake (for in-depth information, see the page dedicated to the Museum of Isolino Virginia).
The historic nucleus was first formed as a military command under colonization by Republican Rome, and then as an inhabited place. In was part of the ContadodelSeprio in the Middle ages and then fell under domination by the dukedom of Milan. It was a “free city state” until 1765, when it fell under the Seigniory of Francesco III d’Este (Duke of Modena) until he died only 15 years later. At that point, it became a city state once again until 1816, when it was given the title of city by the Emperor of Austria. It joined the revolutionary revolts in 1848: the soldiers in Garibaldi’s army defeated the Austrians at Biumo in the famous battle of 26 May 1859.
Between Lake Como and Lake Maggiore lies what is referred to as "Lake Varese" but is actually a quartet of little lakes (Lago di Varese, Lago di Monate, Lago di Comábbio, and pond-sized Lago di Biandronno), collectively known as the Varesotto.This basin was popular amongst 18th century Lombard landscape painters for its bucolic settings, quiet hamlets, simple Romanesque churches, mirror-like waters, and Alpine backdrops.
Things to visit in Varese
Much evidence remains of Varese’s age-old history. The most important is associated with Christianity and therefore places of worship. First and foremost is Santa Maria del Monte (better known as the Sacred Mountain of Varese) and the Sacred Road.
The Church of Santo Stefano (9th – 11th centuries) is just out of town in Bizzozzero; it’s one of the city’s oldest churches. It’s home to a remarkable series of frescoes, which are part of the 16th-century work by Galdino da Varese. The other paintings are from the Romanesque period. The bell tower dates back to the end of the 10th century and was rebuilt in 1347.
And then there is what is rightfully considered one of the most important monuments in the city: the Basilica di San Vittore (16th – 17th centuries). It was built at the end of the 16th century by local Giuseppe Bernascone on a project by architect Pellegrini (known as “Tibaldi"). The neoclassical façade is work by Viennese Pollack. The Rosario chapel inside is home to valuable paintings by P. Francesco Mazzucchelli (known as “Morazzone”). The basilica’s bell tower (so-called “by Bernascone”) is one of the most beautiful 17th-century Lombard constructions. Other churches of significant historic and artistic interest include Sant’Imerio in Bosto, and Sant’Antonio alla Motta and San Giorgio in Biumo.
In terms of civilian buildings, Palazzo Estense (now Town Hall), the Castello di Masnago (Masnago castle) and its series of profane frescoes, the 11th –century Torre di Velate (Velate tower) [a patrimony of FAI (Italian Environment Fund)], Villa Mirabello, Ville Ponti, Villa LittaPanza, Villa Recalcati, the ruins of the historic Castello di Belforte (Belforte castle) and the civic tower in Piazza Monte Grappa are worth mentioning.
However, a visit to Varese should also include a stroll in the pleasant old town centre and its 18th –century porticoes. Starting in Corso Matteotti, filled with pleasant shopping opportunities, the walk continues to Piazza Podesta' (better known as Piazza del Garibaldino due to the statue) and the adjacent Palazzo Biumi (so-called “Broletto”).
Getting to Varese
How to reach Varese
Link of Interest
Address:Via Albani, 73
Sessagesimals (Latitude, Longitude):
45° 50' 2.508" N, 8° 49' 44.986" E
To reach the city center from the Hotel use bus lines A or B from the “Ippodromo” stop (tickets should be taken in advance, not on the bus. Coffee shop and newsstand have tickets).http://www.ctpi.it/direzioni/Servizi%20urbani
Varese is easily reached by plane, being close to the
- Milan Airport of Malpensa (www.sea-aeroportimilano.it)
- Linate Airport of Milano (www.sea-aeroportimilano.it/newsea/it/main_lin.shtml)
- Orio al Serio Airport of Bergamo (www.orioaeroporto.it)
Varese is well connected by trains to all of the major European Cities.
Frequent and fast train service connects Varese to Milan daily: estimated time 1 hour and half approx.
Varese is served by two railway lines: Trenord (www.trenord.it), and Trenitalia Company (F.S. - www.trenitalia.it).
- direction Milan - Piazza San Babila, n° 73 bus (ATM)
- direction Milan - Stazione Centrale, it also stops at Lambrate (Starfly highway line)
For a complete overview of the means of transport from Linate see: Milano Linate - how to get here
Malpensa Shuttle buses connect Milan Linate and Malpensa http://www.malpensashuttle.it/
The Orio Shuttle Coach Buses connect Orio al Serio Airport (www.orioshuttle.com) with Milano Centrale train station in 65 minutes. Also Malpensa shuttle connect Orio al Serio with Malpensa airports.
INFO: Malpensa Express
Tel. (+39) 02.85.114.774
Motorway: A8 - Milano Laghi
From Milano follow the signs for "Varese"
Take the exit "Varese"
From Switzerland: You can pass the customs at: "Gaggiolo", "Ponte Tresa", "Porto Ceresio", "Clivio", "Fornasette", "Zenna", "Indemini", or "Cremenaga". Follow the signs for "Varese"
|Approx. driving distance: From Varese To|
238 km (148 mi)
453 km (281 mi)
622 km (386 mi)
630 km (391 mi)
862 km (535 mi)
For some nationalities a visa is required in order to enter Italy.
Visa invitation letter
To request a visa invitation letter please send an e-mail to the registration and booking office OIC at firstname.lastname@example.org
English is the official congress language.
The whole congress area is a no smoking area.
In Italy you cannot catch a taxi raising your hand like in USA or UK. Taxis must be called by phone or taken at their parking areas. Please find below the main taxi companies' phone numbers: 0332-241800
For international calls to Italy, dial the international code +39 followed by the area code number (including 0) and the telephone number (ie. to call Varese: +39 033 22 41 800).
The unit of currency is Euro.
Electricity used in Italy is 220 Volts, its frequency is 50 Hz and the plugs have two male contact points. Plan to bring a transformer if your electrical device has a different voltage.
Dial 118 – Call free (only from within Italy).
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