A region with a stylish city, romantic lakes, scenic mountains, medieval towns, great food and rich culture. Lombardy is a great place to live and work.

The Lombardy region is the most populous and richest region of Italy. The city of Milan is well known across the world as a style capital, due to its top fashion brands. But Milan, along with the whole region of Lombardy, marries old and new together stylishly, with industry, technology and innovation sitting harmoniously beside history, art and nature. Its most famous international resident is British human rights lawyer Amal Clooney, who was introduced to the area by her husband.

The whole region is well organised, with excellent transport links. Motorways, high-speed trains and air routes connect Lombardy to all the major cities around the world, which is why businesses of all kind flourish here. People work hard, but with so much nature, history, art and culture on their doorstep they also have many opportunities to enjoy their surroundings in their free time.

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City workers can easily escape to the tranquillity of the famous Lakes of Como, Garda, Maggiore and Iseo. The stunning lake views have drawn house buyers and tourists to Lombardy for many years, as well as the numerous outdoor activities on offer. Although property prices on the water’s edge can be high, it is still possible to buy apartments, old village houses and stone buildings up in the hills at more affordable prices. Often you can get some amazing panoramic views from the homes further up the hill.

 

Varenna, Lake Como

 

By looking outside of the main cities and tourist towns you will find much lower property prices. Many people commute into Milan from towns such as Lodi and Pavia, for example. In Lombardy’s southern provinces you can find well priced properties in the small medieval towns and in the far north there are pretty chalets in the mountains. But, if you have the money a city apartment or a villa by the lake can be a good investment. Both areas are very popular with tourists and can earn excellent rental returns. For a one-bedroom lakeside or city apartment you can charge around £100 per night.

In Lombardy’s southern provinces you can find well priced properties in the small medieval towns and in the far north there are pretty chalets in the mountains.

Lombardy is a large region with varying landscapes from the alpine north down to the flat southern lowlands in the Po Valley. It is divided into the provinces of Bergamo, Brescia, Como, Cremona, Lecco, Lodi, Mantua, Milan (regional capital), Monza and Brianza, Pavia, Sondrio and Varese.

 

Lombardy map

 

What the provinces have to offer

Bergamo is the perfect location for lovers of art, culture and sport, with lots to keep you and your visitors busy. The Accademia Carrara is one of the most important art galleries in Italy and you can enjoy performances at Teatro Donizetti. There are numerous ski slopes to the north and at Lake Iseo there are watersports and boat trips to lake side villages. Wildlife enthusiasts will love the woods and reed beds around Lake Endine and there are many trails for cycling and trekking along the Seriana valley, with the whole province having some 124 miles of bike paths.

Brescia is the largest province in Lombardy, and includes the beautiful lakes Garda, Iseo and Idro. The varied landscape includes green hills, small villages, historic town centres, ski slopes and the remains of ancient Camuni settlements. Brescia is considered the industrial capital of Italy, producing machine tools, firearms, mechanical and automotive engineering. You can expect to pay from €150,000 for an apartment near Lake Como. Traditional houses in the hills with a panoramic view of the lake and village houses start at about €190,000.

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Como has mountains, hills, lakes and valleys with varied building styles ranging from old Medieval village houses to elegant 18th century villas. All the lakeside towns are popular throughout the year. Whether you explore by car, bike or boat you are guaranteed splendid views of unspoilt nature. Among the most famous places are Bellagio, with its preserved historic centre surrounded by ancient city walls, and Brunate, reached via the old funicular railway from Como. You can still find village houses in the hills for under €100,000.

 

Limone sul Garda, Lake Garda

 

Lecco lies on the eastern shores of Lake Como. It boasts a selection of centuries-old villas and parks in front of a mountainous backdrop. In Varenna you will find stony and sandy beaches, and small harbours offering boat excursions. Or you can admire the view looking down from the castle of Vezio. There are properties dotted around the landscape, with varying architectural styles, including Romanesque.

Lecco lies on the eastern shores of Lake Como. It boasts a selection of centuries-old villas and parks in front of a mountainous backdrop.

Milan province is shaped by rivers and canals. They link farms and villages and ancient noble villas. The territory of Milan contains six regional natural parks: Parco Adda Nord, Parco Agricolo Sud Milano, Parco delle Groane, Parco Nord Milano, Parco della Valle del Lambro and the Parco Lombardo della Valle del Ticino. Half the Province of Milan is agricultural and flood plain, and most of it is protected by reserves. The province has many castles, villas, abbeys, palaces and cathedrals to visit. The city has a very good reputation for healthcare and schooling and is popular with many British buyers. In Milan you will find stylish apartments, in convenient locations at typical city prices.

Other provinces of interest to property buyers include Pavia, Sondrio and Varese. There are many types of property available to suit every taste. For countryside homes at great prices head south from Milan to Pavia. For a home near the ski slopes look in Sondrio and for apartments and houses near Lake Maggiore take a look at Varese. For further information about Lombardy visit the official tourism website In-Lombardia.com.

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