Ten years ago, I booked flights to Milan but they were later cancelled by the airline however I never forgot about my wish to visit Lake Como. When my friend Lawrence suggested that we finally go, I didn’t have to think twice.
I’d seen plenty of photographs of Lake Como but let me tell you this: it is even more stunning when you see its vast, shimmering blue expanse before the surrounding mountains in reality.
I wasn’t disappointed when I finally made it there after all these years and I can definitely see a return trip there in the near future.
So, I’ll talk you through our two gorgeous days in Lake Como, what to see there, what to do and of course, being Italy, what to eat and drink. Oh yeah- one word you will hear a lot while in Italy is prego; it means ‘you’re welcome’ but they seem to use it for ‘thank you’ too. Handy to know.
“Bellagio is STUNNING and so photogenic, everything looks lovely as if it has an automatic Instagram filter over it. The narrow and at times steep, cobbled streets are lined with lovely terracotta coloured walls with ivy sprawling everywhere and of course there is no shortage of designer boutiques.”
We flew from Liverpool John Lennon Airport to Milan Bergamo with Blue Air. Whilst waiting at the airport gate, we ordered a drink to start the holiday celebrations. Prosecco, naturally, given we were en route to Italy.
After arriving in Milan and catching a train to Como then spending 45 minutes on the wrong bus, we arrived at our hotel called ‘Casa del Sole‘ in the town of Ossuccio with amazing views right over the lake. We slept with the balcony doors open each night so it was the first thing we’d see when we woke up. Gorgeous!
We went for a little wander along the cobbled, leafy streets then suddenly we were caught in torrential rain- we ran inside a shop, bought a can of cold Peroni each and an umbrella and sat outside under the canopy and drank the beers as we waited for it to pass. We were not to be defeated by the rain when we were ready to take Lake Como by storm.
The main town on this part of the lake is called Lenno, so we finally got there after walking along a highway, bridge and other obstacles but it was worth it when we got actually on to the edge of the lake itself to take in the views; Lake Como is really peaceful even in peak tourism season and it was so good to just be quiet for a while with only the sound of the water splashing against the rocks.
I was expecting the food and drink to be extortionate for such a glitzy destination but it was surprisingly really cheap!
Sitting down for a bottle of chilled Pinot Grigio, peach bellinis and pasta with pesto (not very original I know but it was too tempting not to), we made plans for the following day and asked the waiters where we could go that evening. The average price for a pizza or pasta dish like this was around the 7 euro mark so a trip here doesn’t have to break the bank.
Lake Como, or at least the town we were staying in, is not a place for wild nightlife. Most bars close quite early and it has a very relaxed vibe of people sitting and chatting with a couple of drinks.
So after dinner, we walked back along and found a terrace bar and were lucky to get the table closest to the water. We watched the sunset with a few Aperol Spritzs and couldn’t believe that they only cost 5 euros each, especially for a bar with views like this! Obviously we tried to hunt down George Clooney’s house which we think we might have done but we aren’t too sure… I’m sure if we had given him a knock he would have invited us in!
Bellagio is probably the most well known town on Lake Como so we caught a ferry over in the morning to spend the whole day there. It was busier, more touristy and slightly pricier but it was so beautiful and well worth the visit.
While we were on the ferry I suddenly heard my friend say, “Look, there is actually a pool in the lake! I wanna stay there!”. I wondered what he was going on about until I saw the Grand Hotel Tremezzo, an unreal 5 star hotel which is right on the lakeside with a swimming pool located in the lake so guests can sit in it and feel as if they are actually in the lake itself.
I didn’t get chance to take a photo of it unfortunately but I made sure I photographed the sailors as we were boarding:
Bellagio is STUNNING and so photogenic, everything looks lovely as if it has an automatic Instagram filter over it. The narrow and at times steep, cobbled streets are lined with lovely terracotta coloured walls with ivy sprawling everywhere and of course there is no shortage of designer boutiques. All I bought though was a fridge magnet and a wine bottle stopper with a classic Fiat 500 car on it. No designer clothes for me, maybe one day…
For my first trip to Italy I had to give in and try one of their pizzas- there’s no point in attempting to be good when you’re on holiday, is there? I also tried their Chianti wine here which was ok but not my favourite type of red I have to say. I’m no wine snob, a cheap and cheerful Spanish Rioja will do me!
Bellagio is quite petite and is built on a hill so you have to ascend and descend the numerous steps to get anywhere. Definitely choose shoes for comfort over style (or combine both of course) when visiting here as the cobbles would make heels a bad mistake. Musicians playing accordions and guitar add to the ambience here and everything is just so classy and tasteful.
After a few hours of walking around we had a little swim in the lake then dried off before catching the ferry back over to Lenno.
We had a lovely last evening dining on the lake before heading over to Milan the next day and to be honest, we wished that we had spent the whole four day trip in Lake Como and skipped out Milan.
So, it’s safe to say I totally recommend a trip to beautiful Lake Como.
Gorgeous views, amazing food and all the Italian drinks you can think of- what’s not to love?