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Lake Como

Surrounded by a series of mountain peaks and famous for its landscapes, spas and wildlife, Lake Como is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the whole of Europe. No wonder that a number of celebrities including the veteran Hollywood actor George Clooney now have their homes in many of these towns. The beauty of the lake and the towns dotting its shores have attracted and inspired visitors since Roman times.


The lake is of glacial origin and is located in the region of Lombardy in Italy, 45 kilometres north of Milan. Spread over an area of 146 kilometres, Lake Como is the third largest lake in Italy. The region offers an unparalleled opportunity for a lakeside retreat rich in historical, artistic and cultural values. The villas and the antique Romanesque churches transport you to a different world altogether. These villas are mostly encircled by admirable gardens full of lush sub-tropical plants.  The mild weather here ensures that the region surrounding the lake is immersed in greenery and abundance throughout the year.


The destination also attracts a lot of outdoor enthusiasts. While the lake is perfect for activities such as sailing, windsurfing and kitesurfing, the mountains surrounding the lake offer interesting hikes and trails. The best way to appreciate the beauty of the landscape is from the slopes of these mountains, and so hiking and mountain biking are highly recommended. Boat trips on the lake is an absolute must to enjoy the view of the shores dotted with small towns.Going around in a car or a bus is preferred by those who want to explore the valleys and rural settlements, and acquaint themselves with the local culture.


Bellagio


The beauty and charm of Bellagio can be attributed to its unique location on Lake Como. The place is situated on the cape of the land mass that divides Lake Como into two. It looks across the northern arm of the lake on one side and the Alps on the other.


The history of human settlement in Bellagio predates the Roman period. This is quite evident in the buildings and monuments, and their distinct architecture which narrates the tales of a bygone era. The place looks quite inviting even before one lands on the shores of Bellagio. The city centre is located on the tip of the landmass touching the lake and the shoreline is dotted with old patrician houses. Some of the villas that can’t be missed are Villa Serbelloni and Villa Melzi d’Eril. Bellagio is also known for its numerous churches which are famous for their exquisite frescoes and antique bell towers.


Besides places of historical importance, Bellagio also has exhaustive shopping and dining choices to offer. Imagine shopping on the cobbled lanes of the old town and dining while beholding the blue waters of the beautiful Lake Como!  Bellagio promises to stun you with its unique offerings. Feasting on the local cuisine served in the cosy restaurants located on the winding paths make for a delightful experience.


Como


Set against the Alps on one side and the lake on the other, the scenic beauty of Como is unbeatable. Como is situated at the south-western end of the lake. It is also among the hot favourites of tourists because of the innumerable things one can do and places one can visit in the town. With its churches, museums, parks, palaces, squares, gardens and pleasant walks along the shore, the visitors are indeed spoilt for choice in this beautiful lakeside town!


Como has a long history of human settlement and has hosted a number of celebrities and legendary personalities all through its history. Despite its busy waterfront and streets, Como remains a hideout for many people looking to spend a relaxing and peaceful vacation. As a matter of fact, a number of artists, movie stars and writers own properties here. The place is also known for its food culture. The local dishes served in the restaurants have a traditional flavour to them.


The imposing Como Cathedral, which took centuries to build, is one of the most important places to visit in Como. The grand villas and other structures of historical importance are also very popular among tourists. The town is well connected to other regions by rail, road and water which makes it an excellent base to explore the lake and the towns scattered on its shores.


Menaggio


Menaggio is situated on the western shore of Lake Como, at the mouth of River Senagra. The town is perfect for those looking to spend a peaceful and rejuvenating vacation on Lake Como. Its scenic beauty and mild climate ensure a comfortable stay. The artistic heritage of this ancient town is also worth admiring.


Menaggio is famous for the various events it hosts during the summer. The most notable among them is the Menaggio Guitar Festival, which attracts fans and artists from all over the world. The town has an exclusive golf course which makes it a destination of particular interest to sport and outdoor enthusiasts. The areas around Menaggio are good for exploring trails and rural settlements. On the slopes of the mountains surrounding the town, one can enjoy the best panoramic views of the scenic landscape.

Varenna


Varenna is a tiny peaceful village on the eastern shore of Lake Como. The village is not very far from Bellagio and overlooks the central part of the lake. Tourists come here to unwind and relax on a long vacation.

A walk along the lanes of the village takes you to various churches which are known for their frescoes. Tourists also like to spend time in the beautiful lush gardens which encircle the villas here.  It is highly recommended to take a stroll on the beautiful beach and enjoy the landscape.

Lenno

Lenno is located on the north-western shore of Lake Como, bordering Bellagio. Relatively quieter than other places on Lake Como, Lenno is ideal for spending either a long vacation or a weekend break peacefully.

The church and Roman baptistery built in the 11th century is on the main square of the village and calls for a visit. At the centre of the square, there is a war memorial commemorating the soldiers of the Second World War. Like all other places on the shore of Lake Como, Lenno has its own share of monuments, most notable among them being Villa del Balbianello. The villa, which was constructed in the 18th century, on the ruins of a monastery, is known for its luxuriant garden and a fine display of architectural designs.

Lenno’s mild climate, lush gardens and refreshing dining options make it an excellent recreational resort.

Laglio

Located between Mount Colmegnone and Lake Como, Laglio is said to represent everything that Italy has to offer. While the slopes of the mountain offer some of the most beautiful views of the lake and its surroundings, the waterfront itself is equally breathtakingly beautiful. The fact that George Clooney, the famous movie star, owns a villa here cements its reputation as a perfect hideaway.


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