Lake Como, Italy
By Vic Gerami
Lake Como is… Ready for future!
When everything will be over, the desire to explore just restarts.
Here waiting for you will be a destination with a pure beauty, a marvelous nature and breathtaking views, from where you can walk, relax, discover the peace and enjoy the calm of an holiday.
Undoubtedly one of the most beautiful Lakes in the World, Lake Como, also called “il Lario”, is about 46 kilometers (29 miles) long with a maximum depth of 400 meters. The characteristic Y-shaped Lario makes it even more recognizable than many other lakes.
The city of Como is the capital of the Province of Como and it is the perfect starting point to explore many locations around the Lake.
Once in Lake Como, a unique experience is to take time to get to know the towns and villages all around the lake and on the surrounding mountains. Bellagio, Varenna, Cernobbio, Torno, Menaggio, Argegno are some of the most famous locations, but there are many others places to discover.
A tour of the Lake is a must, preferably by boat, in order to see beautiful villas not visible from the street.
The “Navigazione Laghi” (Boats Services) offers various tickets, including the “Hop on and off” service, which allows travellers to to get on and off the battelli (local ferry boats) to explore many of the towns and villages along the shore. Enquire at the ticket offices.
Lake Como is also famous around the world for its luxury villas and gardens. In spring, neoclassical Villa Carlotta in Tremezzo offers to visitors a magnificent spectacle of rhododendros and azaleas. Villa Serbelloni in Bellagio, “the pearl of lake”, is the place to breathe history, art and culture of a glorious past when Leonardo da Vinci, poet Giuseppe Parini and Queen Victoria used to spend their time here. Villa Melzi‘s gardens (open from March 25th to October 31st) are worth a visit, especially in fair weather.
Villa del Balbianello, situated on Lenno’s promontory, offers a beautiful garden and loggia with a spectacular view over the lake and it has increased its popularity with the shooting of many movies, from Casino Royale to a Star Wars episode. In front of Ossuccio we find the only Lario’s island, Isola Comacina, with its old traditions and flavours, its Romanesque church (Santa Maria Maddalena) with a Gothic bell tower and rationalist “artists houses”. At the end of June the island hosts the spectacular “Fireworks” of San Giovanni (Saint John).
The mountains surroundings Lake Como offer many hiking and climbing opportunities, and also walking trails for everyone. One international attraction for those who love walking is the GREENWAY of Lake Como.
In the warmer seasons, the lake is also a place to swim and play watersports: from surfing to kite surfing, to swimming, sailing and wakeboarding. Check out the public and private Lidos in Como for a dive in blue waters!
An increasing popularity of street and mountain biking is creating more and more opportunities to enjoy the Lake and explore its territory.
If you are looking for a summer swim in Como city you have a few options to choose from. There are two beaches in town, one is at the Lido di Villa Olmo, just a few steps away from the beautiful Villa, this lido includes a beach, a large meadow and two swimming pools. Bring a swimming cap to enter the pool.
The other public beach is at the Lido di Villa Geno, it includes a small kids pool and a large meadow by the water. Admission fees required.
Como hosts various markets: the two major important ones, known as the Historic Market in the Lombardy Region, are located along the city walls and inside the covered Market. The “Mercato Mercerie” is held from Tuesday morning to Thursday morning, along the walls from viale Battisti to viale Varese. Saturdays throughout the day.
In San Fedele square is held the Antiques Market (the first Saturday of each month) and the craft market on Saturday for the first three weeks of the month. During the year, picturesque markets are occasionally held too, together with exhibitions of local craft products, food and wine exhibition in the historic Centre, under the walls or in the Lake area.
Other fixed appointments in the city: Fiera di Pasqua (Eastern Fair) is located in viale Varese, from the Holy Thursday to Easter Monday; the Book Exhibition in piazza Cavour and Fiera di Sant’Abbondio in Saints Cosma and Damiano complex, during the patronal feast on August 31st, with a Gastronomic Saga and the traditional cattle fair.
Annonario Market, also Covered Market, is situated in via Mentana 5. It is open daily from Monday to Saturday. Inside this market you can find shops, working with the same opening hours as the nearby shops, stalls and the agricultural Market of local producers.
CortoBio Markets – local and organic producers markets take place every Saturday from 8:00 am to 12.30 pm in Como-Rebbio, in the parco dei Missionari Comboniani in via Salvadonica 3 along via Varesina. Furthermore, special markets with particular products are organized periodically.
Shops located in the historic centre of Como are well-known as well and appreciated by tourists for the variety and quality of products offered. Just outside the walls, starting from Porta Torre, right in via Milano, you can find the old Burg Drizz, with more than 150 shops. You can also enjoy botteghe storiche (historical shops) with a recognized value for the Region.
Discover Lake Como Mountains during the spring and summer: the colours are amazing. In winter the landscapes changes: white snow and static ice are the dresses of the slopes of the Prealps. Start from Valsassina and the other wild valleys in the Eastern side of Lake Como. Reach the majestic summits of Grigna and Resegone. Enjoy the peaceful nature of the mounts in the Western side of Lario.
The Grigna, Resegone and Legnone are the main mountain ranges on the East side of the lake; you can climb them in winter by special routes, or observe their shapes from the bottom of the valleys.
Lake Como Green Land is a territory all to be discovered! The territory of Alta Brianza is rich of wonders, not only environmental and landscapes, but also economic and productive centre, with excellences and traditions. Explore boroughs, know parks and hidden naturalistic heritage, let them enchant you by stunning views and surrender you by the popular and culinary traditions of this land. It is easy to be reached by car or by train, from Como, Lecco, Monza and Milan. This particular position permits to it to be the crossing point for who is travel from East to West of Lake Como territory, but also for who is reaching Bellagio, Tremezzo or other marvellous lands.
For more information about Lake Como including hotels, restaurants, nightlife, recreation, culture, and more, please visit LakeComo.is