It has always been a popular destination for Italians, who escape from the big cities and find in the lake a refuge of peace and tranquillity and foreign people who consider Lake Como a jewel of Mediterranean Sea between the mountains.
Lake Como has a multitude of different landscapes: the enchanting shores of the lake, the blue green waters, the majestic mountains with snow tops in the background, the green woods, the pretty small villages that lie on the coast, but every element is in harmony with one another.
A holiday in Lake Como offers mild temperatures all year round, in the summer the lake offers mountain fresh air and gentle temperatures and in the winter it never gets too cold as the lake helps to maintain a higher temperature.
The lake offers a wide range of activities all year round, from water sports (sailing, diving, water skiing) to mountain sports (skiing, trekking, free climbing) and many other outdoor and indoor activities.
Lake Como – Cuisine and Restaurants
The big variety of the territory reflects also on the gastronomy of this area. The cuisine is strictly connected to the territory and the food resources come from the lake itself and the mountains and is simple, natural and popular.
Within the variety of dishes of the Lake we find ‘fish in carpione’, smokey trout in oil, eel, fish soup ‘alla Tremezzina’. Very popular are the missulit, a kind of fish ‘agone’, dried up, often served with ‘polenta’, the dried or smoked ‘Lavarello del Lario’ and the ‘Pigo’. The risotto served with fillet perch cannot be missed! Along the banks of the lake there are also several cultivations, that produce high quality vegetables and products, like olive oil and asparagus of Tremezzina.
In the mountain inland and in the valleys we find homemade dishes which are poorer. Nowadays in the typical ‘crotti’, fresh cellars carved out from the rock, we find many restaurants, that serve in many cases fresh local products like cheese (‘Taleggio’, ‘Bitto’, the ‘Formaggelle’, goats cheese, cottage cheese and butter) and cold meats. The main dishes are: polenta (yellow that is traditional plain, ‘taragna’ that is with melted cheese, and ‘cunscia’ with garlic), white meat, goat-meat, mushrooms and up the north part of the lake, meat from wild animals. On the east shore of the lake, instead, towards Valtellina, you have to try the famous pizzoccheri.
Among the sweets, there is the cotizza, a kind of homemade flat bread with lemon rind, the “Resta de Comm”,similar to the tradition Italian Christmas cake, and the Miascia, a mixture of dry bread, eggs, apples, almond biscuits, pinoli, currants, butter, flour and dark chocolate.
Lake Como – How to get there
To reach the major areas at Como Lake it is best to use the Milanese air Terminals of Linate, Malpensa and Orio al Serio. From the airports then you should make your way to Milan and then follow the direction Como or Lecco.
To arrive at Como and other west sites of the lake from Malpensa, you should take the Malpensa Express, stopping in Saronno, or arriving directly by bus, line 250.
From Orio al Serio it is possible to reach Lecco and the east side of the lake from the station of Bergamo
To reach Como and the west side of the Lake, you should take the train from Milan Central Station, the journey time is approximately one hour.
To reach Lecco and the east side, you should take the train in the directions Milano-Lecco-Sondrio-Tirano, Brescia-Sondrio-Lecco, , Sesto San Giovanni-Monza-Lecco, Como-Molteno-Lecco (www.trenitalia.com – www.ferrovienord.it).
Como is around 50km from Milan and the quickest way to arrive there, is to drive along the A9 Como-Chiasso. Then from Como, you can easily reach all the west side towns, driving along the Statale Regina SS340.
To reach Lecco and the east side of the lake there are at least 60km from Milan, but you can reach them easily by taking the SS36 (Superstrada Nuova Valsassina) from Monza, driving always straight on from Viale Zara – Viale Fulvio Testi, and in less than an hour you are at Lecco. The SS36, then leads you to Sondrio, with different exits for the main villages on the east coast.