Lago di Como – the third largest lake in Italy

Lago di Como is one of the lakes located in the northern region of Lombardy, near the town of Como. Lago di Como is of glacial origin, but in summer the swimming here is comparable with the swimming in the sea.

Since prehistoric times, when the area was inhabited, the lake was used as a communication channel between the two sides – Northern Italy and the Po plain.

Lago di Como, Lombardia, Italy
Lago di Como by Gabriele Asnaghi

It is the third largest lake in Italy (after Lago di Garda and Lago Maggiore) and with its depth reaching at some places 410 metres it is one of the deepest lakes in Europe.

The most famous resort at Lago di Como is a small town of Como. It is a place full of magical corners, monuments and interesting shops. All this is enclosed in a medieval fortification. It is really a small town, by walking you can see everything in a town easily in a half a day.

Panorama of Como, Lombardy, Italy
Panorama of Como, Lombardy by Nicolago

The most famous monument is the Duomo di Como. It dates from the 14th century and its construction lasted four centuries. This is also reflected in its appearance.

Duomo di Como, Lombardia, Italy
Duomo di Como by KlausF

Not far from the cathedral, on Piazza Medaglie D’Oro, is the Palazzo Giovio, which now hosts a historical museum of Giuseppe Garibaldi. Lago di Como has also a beautiful port of Sant’Agostino, from where you can get to the only island on the lake, Comacina.

If you need to do some shopping, then do this in Via Vittorio Emanuele III. That’s a long street full of shops from a variety of Italian clothing brands, over a traditional meal up to the locally produced cloths, especially silk.

Lake Como at night, Lombardy, Italy
Lake Como at night, Lombardy by Navin Rajagopalan

Around Lake Como you can find plenty of other resorts. e.g. the town of Bellagio is considered the pearl of this area. It offers beautiful views of the surrounding mountains and the lake.

Bellagio has a beautiful historic center. There is the only example of an ancient defense system, which is the Basilica di San Giacomo, built by the original inhabitants of this area.

A view of Bellagio, Lake Como, Lombardy, Italy
A view of Bellagio, Lake Como, Lombardy by Marcus90

If you want to admire the magic of nature, then go through the Parco del Monte San Primo. In addition, you can use any of the numerous boat services that take you around the entire coast.

Another great center is Tremezzo, one of the most visited places at the lake. The major traits of this town are villas and hotels from the 18th and 19th centuries. Another interesting place is the Museum of milk located in the town of Carlazzo. It is the site of the original urban dairies.

The public gardens of Tremezzo, Lake Como, Lombardy, Italy
The public gardens of Tremezzo, Lake Como, Lombardy by Ian Spackman

Thanks to the vastness of the area around Lake Como, there are many opportunities to enjoy a little more fun. Directly on the lake is possible to do all kinds of water sports including windsurfing or water skiing. In all the villages you meet with the original traditions.

On the island of Comacina you can join to celebrate Sagra di San Giovanni. Lots of tourists and locals come to participate on it every year. The celebrations starts with a huge fireworks on June 23 and the following day the lake is full of boats and gondolas.

Isola Comacina, Lake Como, Lombardy, Italy
Isola Comacina, Lake Como, Lombardy by Gian Luca Ponti

Usually the most recommended of the typical food at Lake Como are the gnocchi or rice and, of course, fish. Do not forget to taste the well-known and good wine Nebbiolo.

Lago di Como is also considered to be one of the most romantic places in Italy so if you come to these northern places, you should certainly visit this great area.

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