Extraordinary for its hikes, adventurous for its forest pathways, moving for its steep imposing peaks that hover over the lake, astonishing for its floating houses… Welcome to Lake Como, an intimate corner of Italy, secluded and nestled by its mountains. Charming, timeless, and mysterious, Lake Como comes alive every summer with everything from musical evenings to art exhibits, fairs, concerts, festivals and open-air markets.
As tourist season arrives Lario opens its sleepy eyes to greet its visitors. Shutters are pulled up, lights are turned on, houses swell with voices ascending from the alleys up to the mountains, and squares fill with children’s laughter and the sounds of their little feet slapping away on the pavement.
To commemorate the summer season, the region’s lavish structures such as the Villa Carlotta, in Tremezzo, or Villas Serbelloni and Melzi d’Eril, in Bellagio, and countless others can be admired with a beautiful boat trip.
Masterpieces of style reflect in the lake’s icy waters with their flowered terraces, their fruit trees, the neatly manicured green of their age-old gardens and the elegant ship cradles sheltered in their piers. They are an eternal reminder of the nobles and poets that always claimed this blissful crook of Italy. You can doze off here on sunny afternoons, in the same place where many have dozed before you.
Distinguished guests have added to the ranks in recent years. Foreign entrepreneurs and Hollywood stars have frequented the region, the likes of George Clooney, Richard Branson and Rupert Murdoch.
Because of the appeal of its locations, the Lario region has served as a backdrop for many famous weddings. It is also responsible for creating the scene for the sets of beloved films of both the past and present, including Ocean’s Twelve, James Bond Casino Royale, and The Other Man. Many Italian films have also been set on the lake, from Malombra to the legendary Rocco e i suoi fratelli (Rocco and His Brothers) starring a sensational Alain Delon, who stood with pride alongside the enchanting scenery.
If you have a more active holiday in mind, Como’s summer is all about the water sports: kite-surfing, windsurfing, canoeing and motor boating. For those who find air a more natural environment – with a choice of hang gliding, paragliding or gliding – you can soar with open arms over the beautiful sights and admire the panoramic view from above.
A gaze through a child’s eyes will transform Lake Como into a magical place. The Museum of Toy Horses is one of many sites to whet a kid’s interest. It’s a childhood dream that brings together more than 500 rocking horses manufactured between 1700 and the present day, selected one by one for their artistic value and significance.
Be sure to catch an opportunity to hike the “Spirit of the Woods” path, found inside the forest of Canzo’s Horns, a place to hone listening skills and observational prowess, where even the little ones will be entertained searching for the mysterious inhabitants of the woods.
The pebble beaches, well-equipped and beautiful, awaken a deep-rooted appetite for the summer. They have a special effect on children, encouraging them to dream of flying like the eagles they see skimming the lake’s surface: enticed by the white wake of a motorboat on the dark water, the wind in their hair… their faces lit by the rays of the sun and illuminated with enthusiasm. Expect nothing less than an electrifying ride. Full of adventure, these holidays are the ones that become unforgettable, the ones that fill children’s little heads with lasting memories.
To completely immerse yourself in the magic of Lake Como, the only viable choice is to dive right in!