Como is a wonderful place to explore. It is known as one of the most picturesque cities in Italy, often overshadowed by the beautiful Lake Como that stretches from the northern edge of the city. The city is at the base of the lake and the heart of the region. Lake Como in Italy’s Lombardy region is the third largest lake in Italy. Near the border of Italy and Switzerland, it is nestled between the mountains and it is one of the country’s most spectacular destinations. It is containing several stunning towns, opulent villas, lush gardens, and places to visit around its shaped like an upside-down “Y”.
- 1 How to Get to Lake Como?
- 2 Things to Do in Como, Italy
- 3 Day Trips From Como
- 4 Where to Eat in Como?
- 5 Where to Sleep in Como?
- 6 When to Visit Como?
How to Get to Lake Como?
You can get to the city of Como in many ways and the easiest is via Milan. It’s super quick and convenient to get to Como from Milan by train. You can catch a train from Milano Centrale train station to Como San Giovanni railway station, which takes approximately 40 minutes. Trains run quite frequently and the price varies between € 4.80 for regional trains, to € 15 for Eurocity trains.
You can buy tickets online through Trenitalia or in person at the train station. Don’t forget to validate the ticket at the machines located on the platform just before you get on the train.
Things to Do in Como, Italy
This tiny town is usually overlooked by tourists and it’s just a gateway to the other towns. There are so many popular places to visit in Como with its beautiful monuments, the lovely old town centre and its picturesque views. Don’t miss the Como Cathedral, Basilica di San Fedele, Villa Olmo, the scenic funicular railway, and the promenade along the lake.
Cathedral of Como (Duomo)
Como’s Duomo has been described as the last Gothic cathedral built in Lombardy, Italy. It is located right in the historical center of the city, in the Piazza del Duomo. It is dedicated to the Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary. The cathedral is very impressive with the blue patterned ceiling and the large dome and the altar. Take your time to view the stained glass windows and the various sculptures. Interesting architecture on the exterior facades.
Villa Olma is one of Lake Como’s most famous landmarks. It is a great example of neoclassical architecture. The complex consists of the villa and the extensive gardens that surround it. It is located on the northwest part of Como. You are free to walk around on your own and there is not a charge for entry.
Discover Lake Como on a Boat Tour
There’s nothing better than exploring along the beautiful lake itself. There are tons of different options for boat trips on the lake. You can choose between public and private tours, which both offer a fantastic way to see the stunning views. Another great option is to take a guided sail of the lake. Public boat tours connect popular towns like Como, Bellagio, Lecco, Varenna, and Menaggio. You can choose between one-way ticket, one-day pass, and six-days pass. Visit the official website of Navigazione Laghi for the most updated schedule and timetables.
If you really want to see the best parts of Lake Como, a private boat tour is the way to do it. They are allow you to choose your itinerary and destinations. Prices range depending on what kind of boat you want, as well as the length of your boat tour.
Take the Funicular up to Brunate
The city of Como is connected to the hilltop village of Brunate by a funicular railway. It has been in operation since 1894 and it is used by tourists and locals alike. The funicular offers beautiful views of the surrounding mountains and Lake Como below. Once you get to the top, you can see both the city of Como and the Lake in all their glory. Here you will find a small number of shops, sights, and restaurants. The journey takes 7 minutes. For adults, a single ticket costs € 3.10, while a return ticket costs € 5.70.
Visit the Town of Bellagio
Only a short boat ride away from Como is the beautiful town of Bellagio. It is one of the most beautiful and idyllic towns on Lake Como and it is easy to see why. Sitting right in middle of Lake Como, where the water forks in two directions. It is known for its cobbled roads, beautiful buildings and the famous villas overlooking the water. Don’t miss the gardens of Villa Serbelloni and Villa Melzi. Within the town itself you can find a variety of shops and some small amazing restaurants. Since the town is so small, you can explore Bellagio in 2 hours or less.
Read more → Bergamo, Italy
Day Trips From Como
A few days is pretty enough to see the highlights of Como, but if you have more time there are some great day trips.
Lugano is nestled on the mountainous border between Switzerland and Italy. It is an Italian-speaking city in southern Switzerland, wonderful mix of Italian and Swiss influences. It is a quiet location, where stunning natural sceneries combine with a city ambiance to form an all-together harmonious place.
It’s super easy to get to Milan from Como by train. Trains run quite frequently and the travel time is only 40 minutes. Milan is recognized worldwide for being the capital of Italian fashion. In Milan you can see a unique mix of ancient buildings with modern skyscrapers. The Milan Cathedral is the most significant landmark, a true masterpiece and a work of art.
Where to Eat in Como?
In a country that has one of the excellent cuisines worldwide you can always find some exceptional restaurants.
La Vita e Bella
La Vita e Bella is a cozy and warm place. The menu is definitely interesting with huge variety of salads, but they also offer a good selection of warm dishes, including pasta, meat, and seafood. An excellent selection of wines. The food is very good in terms of quality and quantity. The price is reasonable. Not far from the lake, the restaurant has good outdoor dining seating.
Address: Piazza Domenico Croggi 4, 22100, Como, Italy
It is located in the very heart of the old town, close to the cathedral. The restaurant is well decorated and very creatively designed. The wine selection is terrific and if you love steak, truffles, delicious homemade pasta or cheese you won’t be disappointed with the food on offer. This is a truly amazing restaurant within Lake Como.
Address: Via Vitani 3, 22100, Como, Italy
Where to Sleep in Como?
Villa Platamone has been extensively restored to its finest and original glory. This 5-star hotel offers romantic and intimate rooms, and feature rich textiles, antiques and paintings original to the Villa. Guests can use the swimming pool, gym, and wellness area including a sauna.
The hotel is located right next to shore of Lake Como. Some of the rooms have an amazing view of the lake. Everything is walking distance, shops, restaurants and bars.
The perfect choice for those who travel on a budget. The hotel is close to Como Borgi and S.Giovanni.
When to Visit Como?
The best time to visit Como is between March and November, when temperatures are warm. July and August are the hottest months, where temperatures reach 30 degrees. Expect many tourists, full ferries, and busy restaurants. Prices for hotels will be most expensive during these months.