Varese is a town and comune in north-western Lombardy, northern Italy, 55 km north of Milan. It is the capital of the Province of Varese. The hinterland or urban part of the city is called Varesotto.
The town of Varese lies at the feet of Sacro Monte di Varese, which is part of the Campo dei Fiori mountain range. The town also looks over Lake Varese.
Varese, like the province, has a very high immigrant population owing to both its economy (many multi-national companies and the nearby EU institution JRC) and its location (proximity to Milan makes it an ideal place for the latter city's workers).
In 1859, Giuseppe Garibaldi confronted Austrian forces led by Field Marshal-Lieutenant Carl Baron Urban near Varese. Also, it was here were Alessandro Marchetti's Savoia-Marchetti SM.93 made his first test flights.
The town is most famous for the Sacro Monte di Varese ('the sacred mountain of Varese'), a place of pilgrimage and worship. It is one of the Sacri Monti of Piedmont and Lombardy, included on the UNESCO World Heritage list.