Sightseeing Tours of Milan Lake Como

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Villa Carlotta

Tremezzo - Villa Carlotta - Fountain
Tremezzo - Villa Carlotta - FlowersTremezzo - Villa Carlotta - ParkTremezzo - Alpi View

The stunning Villa Carlotta was built at the end of the 17th century by Giorgio II Clerici to celebrate the success of his family.

Two centuries later the building was bought by the Princess Marianne of the Netherlands as a wedding gift for her daughter Carlotta, from here the name Villa Carlotta! The new owner enriched the gardens and they created what today it is considered a  park of extraordinary environmental and historical value.

After the end of the World War I the Villa passed under the control of the Rotary Club; a foundation was created in order to maintain it and give the public the opportunity to visit it all year round.

Today Villa Carlotta houses a beautiful museum. Thanks to one of its owners the Villa in fact can count on a vast collection of art pieces. Many Canova’s masterpieces are displayed here. On the second floor of the Villa it is possible to admire the furniture and art pieces brought here by Princess Marianne during the second half of the 19th century.

Things to see

After the museum’s visit it is time to get lost in the lovely park that surround Villa Carlotta. The rhododendrons’ and azaleas’ spring flowering created a unique scenario that attract many visitors every year. However due to the incredible number of different plants and flowers species it is possible to enjoy the park all year round. The Bamboos Garden for example showcases more than 25 different variety of bamboos, while the Rhododendrons Wood has no equal except for the woods of the Himalayan Mountains!

Tremezzo

Tremezzo - Alpi View
Tremezzo - Grand HotelTremezzo - FountainTremezzo - Villa Carlotta - Fountain

Tremezzo is a lovely village that lays on the western shore of the beautiful Lake Como, right across Bellagio. From Tremezzo is very easy to explore the Lake Como area; thanks to the renewed popularity of the region the city is visited all year round.

The village has two faces: a coastal one and a hilly one, both gorgeous; the visitors will be able to have very different experiences during their stay.

Like many other towns of the Italian Lake District Tremezzo popularity grew during the 18th and 19th centuries when it became a famous destination of the Grand Tour. Italian and European nobles chose it as their getaway; many luxurious hotels and stunning villas were built in order to accommodate them.

A perfect example is the magnificent Grand Hotel; built in the Italian Liberty Style at the beginning of the 20th century the Hotel is still very popular.

In Tremezzo visitors will find the only historic Villa of the area open to the public: Villa Carlotta. This enchanting building was erected during the 18th century in a neo-classical style. The marvellous staircases at the entrance, the original Canova’s sculptures and the spectacular gardens will give you the opportunity to step back in the past and live for few hours like a european aristocratic of the 19th century!

Things to see

Worth a visit is the lovely Church of Santa Maria where in 1917 a rich Swiss catholic family moved the beautiful statue of the Black Madonna.

While in the city don’t forget to try the mouth-watering local cuisine in one of the many restaurants that you will find close to the waterfront!

Cernobbio

Cernobbio - Panorama
Cernobbio - ViewCernobbio - Villa D'Este - FountainCernobbio - Villa d'Este

Cernobbio is a lovely village located on the western shore of Lake Como. Its gorgeous waterfront, unique piazzas and narrow streets helped the city to become one of the most lovely towns of the Italian Lake District.

Strolling around its centre visitors will be enchanted by the beautiful buildings that house typical restaurants and shops. From the harbour it is possible to take a ferry that will easily connect you to the most important villages of Lake Como.

While discovering the city the Romanesque Chiesa di San Michele is worth a visit. Built during the 18th century the church has a stunning baroque carved altar.

Cernobbio is famous for its marvellous villas erected mostly during the 19th century by the european aristocracy. The villas and they gorgeous gardens are private so if you want to see them the best way is to rent a boat and admire them from the lake.

However due to the growing popularity of the area many Villas are being transformed into luxury hotels. The best example is the hotelVilla d’Este; the villa was once owned by the aristocratic d’Este Family. The building was erected during the 16th century on top of the ruin of a convent; it is probably from here that the name Cernobbio came: Coenobium in fact in latin means convent! The villa was restyled during the 19th century by the Princess of Wales Caroline of Brunswick born d’Este.

Things to see

Popular are also Villa Erba and Villa Pizzo. The first one was built at the end of the 19th century and today houses an important conference centre; Villa Pizzo was constructed three centuries earlier and has a gorgeous park and many beautiful frescoes.

Cernobbio is also famous for its stunning surroundings: the lovely Alpi Scarone offer breathtaking views of the area. There is a gorgeous trail, Via dei Monti Lariani, perfect for trekking and the Buco della Volpe a splendid cave with an unique underground pool.

Bellagio

Bellagio - Alpi View
Bellagio - PromontorioBellagio - General ViewBellagio - Villa Melzi d'Eril

Bellagio is a stunning village located on Lake Como. The unique scenario, the beautiful Lake Como and the Alps in the background, contributed since the beginning to its fame.

The first known inhabitants of the area were the Insubres, a Celtic tribe that founded a city in the 7th century BC. After almost five centuries of peaceful livings the Romans conquered the region. Immediately Bellagio became a strategic city for the growing republic. After the fall of the Roman Empire Bellagio passed under the Lombards control. Then for centuries the village was disputed between two powerful cities of the area: Milan and Como.

During the Napoleonic dominion the city became extremely popular among the rich Milanesi. The Lombard nobility started to build here their summer homes. The area was quickly transformed: roads were built, stunning villas were erected, luxury shops were opened. Bellagio became so popular around Europe that numerous aristocrats crossed the borders to visit it!

In order to accommodate the growing number of tourists many elegant hotels were built. Today it is still possible to stay in one of the original resorts!

Bellagio has few beautiful churches that testimony its wealth. In particular are worth a visit the Basilica of San Giacomo and the Church of San Giorgio; both churches were built at the end of the 11th century in the Lombard Romanesque style. The Basilica’s campanile was erected on top of the ancient city walls.

Today Bellagio is mostly known for its beautiful Villas. Few of them are open to the public; it is a unique experience to visit them and their stunning gardens.

Villa Serbelloni, for example, was built during the 15th century on top of the remains of an ancient castle. When it became property of Alessandro Serbelloni it was transformed thanks to the beautiful decorations and pieces of art that were added. Visitors can enjoy its enchanting garden.

Things to see

Another gorgeous Villa is the one built for Francesco Melzi d’Eril; this villa was the first one erected in the area. It was thanks to Melzi d’Eril that Bellagio became so popular!

The village is also famous for its stunning surrounding. It is easy to explore the area with a bicycle or following one of the beautiful trekking routes.

The visit of Bellagio can’t end without trying the traditional dish called the Toch. It is a polenta based dish enriched with butter and cheese and covered with dried fish and salami!