Lake Como: Jewel of the Italian Lakes District

Lake Como in the Italian Lakes District is one of the most popular destinations for cheap holidays. Enjoyed by international travellers, as well as locals, this stunning location is a must-visit if you’ve never been to the north of Italy.

Situated in the scenic northern Italian Lakes district of Como Province, Lombardy is one of the most beautiful natural attractions in the entire country. It is home to Lago di Como, or Lake Como as it is called in English. The lake is shaped like the letter Y, only inverted, and is located between Milan and the Swiss border. Due to its proximity to the Alps to the north, this end of Lake Como is mountainous. However, as you travel further to the south, it gradually becomes increasingly flatter along the way. The city of Como is located on the southwest end of the lake.

Why Visit Lake Como?

Today, Lake Como is one of the most popular destinations for cheap holidays enjoyed by international travellers, as well as locals. This is because of its mild climate, stunning natural beauty and pleasant year-round temperatures. Although these are the primary reasons for so many visitors to the Italian Lakes every year, there are so many more reasons to visit here, either on an extended holiday or just a brief three or four-day getaway. According to many of the locals in the area, Lake Como holds mysterious healing properties. This is also part of the allure of the lake.

Como Cuisine

As is the case with most of Italy, many tourists visit the Italian Lakes for the cuisine, especially the risotto con pesce persico (risotto with perch), a mouth-watering local dish that is made using the lake’s own fish. Others are attracted by the handmade silk and wool items that are created by the local craftsmen; 80% of Europe’s silk originates in the Lake Como area. For the younger generation, there is no end to the variety of watersports to participate in at the lake. These include the local favourites of canoeing, kayaking, sailing, water-skiing and windsurfing, not to mention the opportunity for getting a nice suntan.

Accommodation & Activities

Accommodation is no problem as there are hotels in Lake Como plus resort villages and villas along many areas bordering the lake’s extensive shoreline, especially in towns such as Bellagio, Colico, Como and Lecco. No matter where you go, there are boat trips available, hiking paths for exploring the natural beauty of the Lake Como landscape, and an abundance of photographic opportunities to take advantage of. It is also an ideal destination for romantic couples searching for a more intimate getaway or holiday. Surrounded by hills and mountains, the city of Milan lies only 40 km (25 miles) to the south of Lake Como.

Best Times to Visit

For the residents of Milan, the lake serves as an ideal destination for cheap holidays and so many areas around the lake tend to be very crowded on the weekends; visiting during the week (Sunday to Thursday night) is advisable. The months of July and August are the busiest months of the year. For all practical purposes, spring and autumn are the best times of the year to visit the Italian Lakes as the weather is very pleasant and it is far less crowded than the months mentioned above. Winter visitors do have the opportunity to enjoy skiing, but just be aware that some facilities and services are unavailable.

Guest article courtesy of Anna DeWinter.

(Photo by EricPerego)