Hiking along Como Greenway


As I mentioned in my previous post, we spent a day exploring the neighboring towns and villages around lake Como. Before our trip I did some research on hiking and walking routes and found Lake Como Greenway. The descriptions and photos on the website looked wonderful, plus the route also passed some famous villas I wanted to see and visit. The starting point of the hike is in Colonno. There are buses going to Colonno from Como but we decided to take a boat instead. The boat does not stop at Colonno, but in Argegno. We got to the boat harbor and the queue was huge. I think during the summer the masses of tourists will be even bigger and it's better to get there really early. We were lucky to get on the boat as one of the last ones. The others had to wait for the next one.

View from the boat


Boat ride offers amazing views to the villages, mountains and villas on the shore. You can see a lot.


Shore of Lake Como


From Argegno it's about 2 km walk to Colonno. Be aware, the road from Argegno to Colonno is really not meant for pedestrians. The traffic is quite heavy and the road is narrow. As soon as you reach to Colonno you will see a sign of the hike. From there on you will walk on small village roads and pedestrian paths. The walk is relatively flat - there are some descents and ascents but it's nothing extreme. You have views from from higher over the lake and there are sections that go along the lake.

Village roads

View to the lake

When we reached to Villa del Balbianello, we got off the hiking route and went to see the villa. It's about 1 km walk to get to the gates. The location of the villa is really nice and the garden is beautiful but I felt it was a bit overpriced. Especially compared to Villa Carlotta where we went later during the hike.

Villa del Balbianello

Villa del Balbianello

Villa del Balbianello
After visiting the villa it was time to have lunch. We ended up at a restaurant in Lenno with a nice terrace at the lake.

Lenno

View during the lunch
After the lunch we continued along the route enjoying ice cream and views to the lake.


We reached to Villa Carlotta around 3 pm. The gardens are huge and in the beginning of April some magnolias and rhododendrons were already in bloom, but you could only imagine how it looks later in the spring. If you happen to be in this region and you have time to see only one villa, then I think Villa Carlotta is the one to choose.

Inside the villa

Ceiling

View from the balcony towards the entrance
Rhododendrons in bloom
One of the most famous villages in the area is Bellagio. As it's right across the lake from Villa Carlotta, we decided to go and check it out. What can I say? It is nice but I wouldn't say it's nicer than other villages. The streets are really crowded and it feels kind of touristic.

Bellagio

Bellagio
The queue for the boat tickets was so long that the tickets to the last boat to Como got quickly sold out. Fortunately there was still one bus going. So we queued up at the bus stop about 30 minutes before the departure and it was good we did it. The bus was so full in the end that it couldn't fit anyone else. If you prefer to avoid crowds you can easily skip this place.

To summarize our trip - it was wonderful. Nice weather and stunning surroundings. The lake is big - which means that there is still a lot to discover and it is definitely worth going back there.



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