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Driving from Malpensa Airport to Varenna?

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California
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Driving from Malpensa Airport to Varenna?

We fly into Milan Malpensa on a Sunday morning.We will have 4 adults and 1 baby and plan to rent a car to drive to Varenna? How long and difficult is this trip? From there we travel to Lucca. Any suggestions for best routes? Thanks!

Varenna, Italy
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for Lake Como
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1. Re: Driving from Malpensa Airport to Varenna?

MXP to Varenna will probably take you somewhere between an hour and a half and two hours. On a Sunday morning, you should be in good shape with traffic (particularly since most of the big trucks won't be circulating) and you won't be on any of the super-narrow roads, so it shouldn't be too challenging.

As far as routes go, if you have a GPS at home it's well worth it to download a European map set or rent one with the car -- makes navigation a lot simpler (signage here is not always tremendously straightforward). Otherwise, invest in a good map and choose your navigator well!

For the airport trip, you can take the A8/E62 either down to the A4 (the Milan ring road) for a short bit and then up the SS36 toward Lecco or avoid the outer-Milan piece entirely by shooting directly over to the A9 from the A8 and cutting over to the SS36 at Lomazzo. From Varenna to Lucca, I'd say the most direct route is down through Piacenza then down to the coast just before Parma on the A15 (the least stressful of the passages over the Appennine Mountains, in my opinion).

Safe travels!

Sydney, Australia
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2. Re: Driving from Malpensa Airport to Varenna?

You can check out road routes and times at www.viamichelin.com which allows you to play with the route and various criteria. But its travel times are often a bit optimistic.

California
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3. Re: Driving from Malpensa Airport to Varenna?

Dear Kat, Thank you so much for the driving recommendations! You seem to know your way around Italy. We decided to change our route a bit and head to Santa Margheritta first from Malpensa, then on to Lucca. After a week in Lucca and the surrounding area we will go to Milan, leave our car and take the train to Como. Any suggestions for this route? Again, Gracie!! Thank you!

PS Any affordable, family friendly hotels in Como that you would recommend?

4. Re: Driving from Malpensa Airport to Varenna?

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