A trip to Lake Como is incomplete without a visit to its Pearl: Bellagio. Bellagio is located exactly halfway between the two southernmost branches of the lake, and is famous worldwide for its beautiful villas overlooking the water.
Before starting your trip, make sure you know all the best things to do in Bellagio. Most of the attractions are located within walking distance, so time is of the essence during your planning process. Click here to see a map of Bellagio and its best attractions.
Bellagio, the Pearl of Lake Como
If you look at a map of Bellagio, you will soon realize that there is one main road which goes through the center until it gets to the tip of the village.
The southern part of this tiny street, Via Giuseppe Garibaldi, is populated by a variety of shops where visitors can find local food, leather goods, clothing, perfumes, and much more. You’ll be spoiled for choice!
To the left of the street, several pedestrian alleys lead to the lakefront, facing the Como branch of the lake. These alleys are also full of shops and restaurants… and stairs, too! So wear a pair of comfortable shoes and get ready to do a lot of ups and downs.
After walking on the romantic lakeside of Lungo Lario Manzoni, you will reach the world famous Villa Serbelloni. Villa Serbelloni is a luxury hotel built in the 15th century and currently owned by the Rockefeller Foundation.
Except for its paying guests, visitors do not have the opportunity to visit the interior of the villa, but they can walk into its gardens, surrounded by vegetation.
So, you’ve already packed your bags but… don’t know where to sleep?
Now, let’s go back to our tour. You can now take Via Eugenio Vitali and, after a short walk, get to Punta Spartivento. You’ll find yourself right in the middle of the two branches of Lake Como, where you can relax in a wooded park or see the little harbor hosting the locals’ boats.
Heading back, you can get to Piazza della Chiesa and admire the Basilica of San Giacomo, a Romanesque church built between the 11th and 12th centuries. Farther along the way, you will get to the town hall. Right in front of it you will find a pedestrian path, which will take you to the hamlet of Pescallo in about 10 minutes.
Pescallo is an old fishing village located southeast of the promontory and overlooking the branch of Lecco. It is a very popular destination for sports, so don’t miss the chance to do some kayaking or water skiing.
Among the other things to do in Bellagio, the Villa Melzi gardens are worth mentioning. The villa was built between 1808 and 1810 on commission of Francesco Melzi d’Eril, duke of Lodi, and its gardens were designed by Luigi Canonica and Luigi Villoresi. Visitors can choose between different routes, since these gardens gather many elements of artistic, cultural, and historical interests. Entry price is €6.50.