southern europe

Italy: Cernobbio (Lake Como Region)

Lisa Anderson
Cernobbio is located in the Lake Como Region on the opposite side of the lake as Bellagio. Boats to Bellagio run several times a day, including one boat that transports vehicles in case you want to boat over and take a scenic drive back. Cernobbio is a small town with very few American tourists and is what I would consider a sleepy town. It's very comfortable and relaxing and our meals were outstanding. Harry's Bar on the waterfront is very active and happening (try the lasagna), Trattoria del Vapore has courtyard seating with fabulous pasta, steaks, and lentil soup, and then there are more romantic spots such as Il Gatto Nero (Black Cat in Italian). Gatto Nero is at the top of the town, on the mountain top, overlooking the lake. It is also supposed to be one of George Clooney's favorite spots in the region to dine, although to our disappointment, he was not there the night we were there. The setting at Gatto Nerro is open air (but with a permanent roof), split into numerous intimate rooms and spaces, candlelit, and with personable service. After your meal, don't be surprised if they bring out huge glass canisters of black licorice or biscotti for you to snack on while they prepare your dessert. The menu offerings and the meal was fabulous too. Gatto Nero should definitely be included as a stop if you are in the Lake Como region.

our trips

Albums of Southern Europe




Bordeaux & Garonne

From Bordeaux, cruise the Garonne and Dordogne rivers into the heart of Aquitaine to explore some of the world's most famous vineyards, home to wines with names like Saint-Émilion, Médoc and Sauternes. Witness spectacular scenery, ancient castles and gothic cathedrals on a voyage of refined...


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St. Tropez

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Tour de France

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Herculaneum Ruins



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Venice is magic. It is rippling water and azure sky and ancient buildings tumbling into canals. It is narrow winding paths and curving bridges. It is speed boats and ferry boats and flat boats of all descriptions. It is gondolas and serenades and strains of Vivaldi wafting through the air. It is delicious aromas from Italian kitchens and wines from local vineyards so tasty you crave them. It is Murano creations and silk scarves in dozens of hues and countless other shopping delights that tickle the senses. Venice is like reading a mystery novel that has a new twist on every page, and you are constantly amazed at the turn of events. Venice never fails to surprise and delight.




Wine Cruise

Our clients favorite destination this year is Italy, and this delightful country just happens to be a fantastic place to sample great food and wine. Visiting vineyards and wineries is a popular pastime in Italy, a good way to meet the locals, as well as to find out more about winemaking.


Amalfi Coast

The prime time to visit the Amalfi Coast is July and August when you can best enjoy the water and the associated activities. Hop from island to island on a yacht or a small speed boat - whatever your preference. There are boats of every shape and size and plenty of 5-star accommodations and unforgettable restaurants too. Don't miss Ravello, a short bus ride to the top of the hill from the town of Amalfi. And of course Positano and Capri are must-sees too!




Po River Valley




Monte Carlo

Monte Carlo is an exciting place to visit, with its chauffeured Rolls Royce's, Maserati's, and Lambergini's. Spectators from around the world gather to see the glitz and glamour of this tiny principality, and to try their luck at the most famous place: The Casino. Le Hotel de Paris is the...


Douro Valley / Porto

This region, including the paradors of northern Spain, is known for authentically restored castles, palaces, and monasteries in stunning settings. Porto is known for Port Wine and Coimbra where you can visit its famous university which was founded in the 13th century.



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Over a million people call the exciting capital city of Bilbao home. The opening of the futuristic Guggenheim Museum placed the metropolis firmly on the cultural map as the city began its rejuvenation. Surrounded by green mountains, forests, and beaches, Bilbao is also rich with colorful riverfront landscapes and quirky architecture.


Costa Brava Ampurdan Pals

Take a walk back in time while visiting this medieval town on the Costa Brava in northern Spain. Enjoy the charm of cobblestoned streets, the beauty of the coastal paths, and the stunning scenery of the beaches. Be sure to also bring your appreciation for delicious local wines and fresh seafood to this enchanting year-round vacation destination.



Granada, located in southern Spain in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains, is a medieval, yet simultaneously cosmopolitan city rooted in Moorish architecture. The city is elegant, edgy, and shrouded in mystery, and simply wandering the narrow streets is as unique an experience as is catching the signature late-night flamenco shows in the "caves." The Unesco World Heritage site, the "Palace city" of Alhambra, is another must-see and considered by some to be one of the ten wonders of the world.



30 miles outside of Barcelona, a visit to Montserrat in the Pyrenees Mountains encompasses history, spirituality, nature, and culture. The more adventurous may even consider the 5-hour trek to the summit to be rewarded with spectacular 360* views of Barcelona and Penedes. Eighty resident-monks welcome pilgrims and visitors alike to their religious retreat of Santa Maria de Montserrat Abbey which enshrouds the revered Virgin of Montserrat statue.


San Sebastian

The upscale resort town of San Sebastien is located on the Bay of Biscay in Spain's Basque Country. This coastal paradise is a gastronomic delight whether showcasing its numerous Michelin-starred restaurants and pioneering chefs or the wildly popular pintxo bars. Whether shopping while strolling through the cobblestoned streets or soaking in the sun on one of its' famed beaches, San Sebastian is stylish and classy by day yet also hip and edgy once the sun goes down.


Santiago de Compostela

SThe alleged burial site and shrine of St. James, Santiago de Compostela is the culmination of the famed "The Way of Saint James" religious pilgrimage, embarked upon by 250,000 per year. The city's well-preserved Old Town, named as a Unesco World Heritage site, houses narrow, winding, cobblestoned streets and historic buildings while the New Town is home to college students, restaurants, and nightlife. Whether witnessing the intense emotion of the pilgrims as they reach the end of their months-long spiritual journey or looking down upon the ancient and glistening city from the rooftop of the famed cathedral, Santiago de Compostela is a unique gem not to be missed.


Palma de Mallorca

Palma is a large urban area and major seaport located on the Mediterranean island of Majorca, part of Spain's Balearic Islands. The biking- and pedestrian-friendly city is centered around Old Town where a plethora of tasty dining, unique shops, historical monuments, trendy galleries, and brilliant architecture can be found, including the famed Gothic Cathedral.


Balearic Islands Menorca

Menorca is another captivating Mediterranean destination located in Spain's Balearic Islands, albeit much more laid back than most of its neighbors. An alternative to savoring the endless beaches and glistening turquoise waters may be to take advantage of some of the many traditional festivals and celebrations that are standard throughout the summer months. Nature enthusiasts will also enjoy being in the path of numerous bird species' migration routes as well as the abundance of butterflies and dragonflies present on the low-key island. Take a deep breath and relax!


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Owner Linda Young and her staff have traveled on six continents and visited well over one hundred countries and all of the fifty states. These experiences by land, as well as extensive cruising on all the deluxe cruise lines, make us uniquely qualified to help you choose the perfect trip. Our clients participate in many delightful experiences that are unknown to others.

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