Guide to Lake Como

Como Town Como Town © Fototeca ENIT

The town of Como was originally a Celtic or Gallic border outpost linking Italy to Switzerland and northern Europe.

The Romans got there in 196 BC and cleverly kept much of it the same, renaming it Novum Comum. From then the place has never looked back.

Today, it is home to 83,000 people and combines its industry, art, recreation and historical activities effortlessly. Head to the 'Cortesella', the old commercial heart of the town since 1800.

The silk industry was one of the first to be industrialised and visitors should beat a path to the Museo Didattico della Seta-Fondazione Setificio as well as the Ratti Foundation which contains old textile and fabric collections.

Como and the Lake are well connected to Milan's Malpensa Airport.

In fact the airport is ony 65km away and closer to Como than Milan itself. The rail station at Como is called Stazione S.Giovanni while a bus connects Malpensa Terminals 1 & 2 to Piazza Cavour at Como.

Ossuccio, Lake Como  © Fototeca ENIT

There are '18 pearls' around the blue heart of the lakes of Lecco and Como.

With the town of Bellago located on the promontory where the two lakes divide, the others fanning out include Argegno, Sala Comacina, Ossuccio (pictured above), Isola Comacina, Lenno, Mezzegra, Tremezzo, Griante e Cadenabbia, Menaggio, Dervio, Bellano, Varenna, Lierna, Mandello del Lario, Lezzeno, Oliveto Lario and two towns on the hills overlooking the Lake; Esino Lario and Perledo.

All are fascinating and stunningly beautiful. Perhaps Oliveto Lario deserves a mention. It is famous for the olive oil produced from trees originally planted by the ancient Romans, as well as its architectural heritage.

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