Lake Como Towns & Villages
West Shore - North to South
Dongo - Up and coming Dongo is situated in a small gulf so attracts watersports and lakeside activity. It has a commercial past but has recently begun to reinvent itself as a leisure and tourism destination, so has plenty of eateries and shops. There is a fantastic boat hire centre in Dongo which is well run and rents out power boats that you don't require a licence to operate.
Musso - Sitting pretty on the waterfront and winding its way into the adjoining terraced hillsides, Musso is a typically Italian lake town where you can take pleasant hillside strolls that take in the magnificent lake
Menaggio - From hillside to waterside, Menaggio is one of the more famous towns along the lake, in fact it is the hub of the western shoreline. Your visit to Lake Como will almost certainly bring you to Menaggio and you won't be disappointed. With great food, drink and shopping off the lovely waterside square, you can eat and drink alfresco from early until late. You will also be able to enjoy its small marina that looks across to the romantic town of Bellagio and Varenna to complete the centre lake triangle.
Cadenabbia - Noted for its stunning villas and fascinating history, Cadenabbia and Griante sit between the mountains and the shore. A pleasure to stroll around and to take in ambience from a bygone age.
Tremezzo - Nestling between the mountains and shoreline, Tremezzo typifies Lake Como. With some
Mezzegra - Mezzegra is made up of a cluster of smaller communes that form a thriving small town of shops, cafes and restaurants and a children's park. It is very near the centre of the lake and is close to the lakeside with stunning views.
Lenno - With stunning views across the gulf of venus, Lenno is a waterside town with some great
Ossuccio - Located in a valley known as the 'zoca de l'oli', the town is known for its climate, olive trees, the natural beauty of its location on the lake, and monuments. There really is something for the whole, there is even a children's park!
Argegno - From its large waterfront and marina, this bustling small town, and its close neighbour Shignano, is pushed sharply upwards into the imposing cliffside. The old and new come together making Argegno an up and coming hot spot.
Laglio - This picturesque little town lies on the water edge and is one of the lake's oldest settlements. Some say it is best viewed from the lake, which is a must if you want to catch a glimpse of the town's most famous resident - no less than George Clooney himself.
Moltrasio - Situated on the lake, Moltrasio has all the ingredients for a truly wonderful visit. You can enjoy the public Lido, small harbour and cafes, bars, and the lovely restaurant Imperialino is a must for
Cernobbio - Famous for the stunning Villa d'Este as its backdrop, Cernobbio is a great location for all. Its generally flat topography makes it a leisurely place to stroll.Its extensive lakefront promenade, eclectic shops and one of the best children's parks (with a huge pirate ship) make a day or evening trip an absolute must.
Como - Como has it all: great designer shopping, wonderful cafes and bars and stunning architecture. It's worth losing yourself in Como for a day to see the beating heart of the lake. It's easiest exploring Como on foot as the streets of Como town centre fanning out from the incredible Duomo. This is highly recommended.
South Shore - West to East
Blevio - Set on the Bellagio side of the lake, this beautiful waterside town is made up of seven small villages. From the shoreline upwards it has spectacular views across the lake to Villa d'Este. With an excellent choice of shops, restaurants, and bars, this makes Blevio a truly worthwhile day out.
Bellagio - Taking centre stage on the lake, this evocative town is steeped in romance and history. Favoured for its luxury shops and restaurants, you can while away the day enjoying the cafe culture, wandering the backstreets or simply staring in awe at the beauty of all that surrounds this town. If
Lecco & Malgrate - Situated on the fjord-like eastern branch of the lake, Lecco is a more commercial town and arguably not the prettiest on the lake. What it does have in its favour is that it is also the least touristy section of Lake Como. The town has good public transport, plenty of access to the mountains for serious mountain-walking and plenty of good places to eat and shop.
Eastern Shore - North to South
Colico - At the north end of the lake, Colico sits at the foot at Monte Legnone so you can enjoy 360 degrees of stunning vistas with an alpine backdrop and stunning lake views. Colico is a perfect family destination and is a hub for watersports and outdoor activities for all ages, including swimming, cycling, tennis and boating (sail and motor).
The beautiful port boasts a pedestrainsed piazza and promenade, with restaurants and shops. Nearby is a bay of Piona which has three beaches and lots to do for the family. Colico also boasts a direct rail link into Milan - perfect for a day in the capital of the north.
Dervio - Dervio benefits from the warm winds of 'la Breva', so is a popular centre for windsurfers and sailors. Dervio has a lovely sandy beach and is a favourite with families.
Bellano - Moor your boat and sit by the lake enjoying a coffee or walk the narrow winding streets amongst the old houses. This picturesque working village has year-round appeal and the authentic cuisine, in this very Italian setting, will definitely delight.
Varenna - Varenna is part of the lake-centre triangle made up of Menaggio, Bellagio and of course
Bella Como, 2011