The Allure of Lake Como

If you need beauty and relaxation in your life visit Lake Como.

We recently spent a week in Lake Como. Loved it! Maybe because there was some real effort to get there, the final destination was even sweeter.

The previous week we visited Rome and of course it was wonderful, delicious and crowded. We had plans to visit Lake Como because we heard it was it was a special destination with expansive views, cooler weather and less crowds.

To get there first we took a train to Milan, then changed trains and went to Malpensa Airport to pick up a rental car. There my husband got behind the wheel of the very large rental car. Then the harrowing journey began. I am a nervous driver and passenger. The narrow roads and dozens of tunnels, bridges and hairpin curves along Lake Como were frightening. Together we navigated our way to our gorgeous Airbnb in Perlado. Perlado is a very small mountainside hamlet overlooking the town of Varenna on the shore of Lake Como. There were no less than a dozen hairpin turns up the mountain to get to the Airbnb. The views were spectacular, the area very quiet and the hike down into town was invigorating.

We are a competitive couple so we tried to beat each other’s Fitbit step count each day. I recently purchased a new Fitbit Versa and I have to say I just love it. It’s colorful, easy to read, versatile (lots of clock faces) and it gives me all of the information I need. Features include music, heart rate, step and mile count, calories burned and a bit of motivation. I bought mine on Amazon. To check it out just click the link below:

Fitbit Versa from Amazon
Fitbit Versa from Amazon
The road in front of our Airbnb is not for the faint of heart

The medieval town of Varenna was charming and much less touristy than it’s pretty neighbor of Bellagio. We enjoyed our mornings sipping cappuccino in the cafes along Lake Como. We found taking the ferry from Varenna was simple. For about 15 euros a day you can have unlimited trips across the lake to neighboring towns. The ferries come typically every 45 minutes and the trips across the lake were special as well.

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The cutest little coffee shop in Varenna recommended by our Airbnb host

From our Airbnb we were able to hike down to the town of Varenna, using a picturesque route filled with flowers and stone steps.

The stone stairs that lead down the mountain to Varenna

We explored the nearby towns of Bellagio, Menaggio, Cadenabbia, Vezio and Bellano by foot, by ferry and car.  We hiked as often as possible to go off the beaten path.  Although we visited the tourist destination, enjoyed shopping and sightseeing some of our best memories are when we are on foot discovering the charm of these beautiful towns.

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The gorgeous tulips in Mennagio
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Wisteria hysteria in springtime.
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View of the seaside village from Villa Monastero

It’s impossible not to fall in love with the beauty of Bellagio.  The food and wine were terrific and the shopping was incredible.

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Wine at a lakeside cafe in Bellagio.
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Visiting the waterfall in Bellano

Only a short drive, with lots of tunnels and narrow roads bring you to the  steep gorges and turquoise waterfall at Orrido di Bellano.

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For only a few euro you can visit Orrid di Bellano.

One of the best things about visiting Lake Como in early May is that it gave us an opportunity to rest, to relax, to breathe and to appreciate our surroundings without an agenda.  We took each day as we were given.  If it rained in the morning, we wore rain coats and adjusted our day accordingly.

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I love the look of the old church in Varenna with the fog  in the background and the trees in the foreground.

We had been traveling for nearly a month when we arrive in Lake Como.  Following two cruises with twelve ports and time in Rome it was time to recharge and live like a local in Lake Como.  Staying in an Airbnb allowed us to feel the local culture, and get a little taste of the Italian lifestyle.

If you would like to try Airbnb here is a discount link.

AirBnb Discount

Author: Retired Rambling

I hope to share my passion for travel, food and meeting new people as we travel the world. My husband and I are retired and with time on our hands I hope to discover new places and people in this wonderful world and bring those stories to my readers. Please follow as we ramble about.

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