Lake Como – the hidden treasure of Lombardy

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While the weather was against us, our luck was with us! Why? We had the opportunity to see Lake Como and all the nice forests and cottages on its shores and the lovely towns of Como and Bellagio for just a day!

We didn’t just see them! We explored them with three different faces – cloudy and just about to rain, sunny, and between the heavy raindrops and misty mountain tops.

 

journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna

 

journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna

 

The lake has an unusual form (to me it looks like the Greek letter of Lambda). For transportation inside it one can use boats, ferries, water taxis and other small yachts and sailing vessels. You can travel between the villages around the lake by car, but only if you have enough time. The roads are picturesque, but narrow and curvy. In a village your speed decreases because of the narrow streets and many people crossing. To get to the higher part you can use funiculars or cable lifts. When the weather is nice the view from above is simply stunning.

We caught the “fast” ferry. This means it was supposed to be a 40-minute trip from the city of Como to Bellagio. (The “slow” ferry takes about 2 hours for the same distance.) Yes, there are a lot of cottages, villages and towns on the shores of the lake. While passing them we start wondering which one of them is the most beautiful. In front of us are the high steep hills and magnificent mountains. It looks like an amazing place to spend a week or two.

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We are having some troubles deciding how to spend our only day here and what to see first. Our itinerary looks like this: we take a train to the city of Como, then a ferry to Varenna, from where we take a train to go back. Coming south we had two options of getting to the area by train.

 

journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
We almost lost the view there
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
With our new umbrellas
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
Then it stopped raining…
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
Como welcomed us with rain

We decided to wait for the bus next to the harbor. There things started to look like we might need to buy some umbrellas. After bargaining for a while we had two new umbrellas and went off walking. We just got our umbrellas wet and it stopped raining. Even the sun showed up. Como was welcoming us with some mixed signals.

We were really happy with our walk on the lovely streets and with our lunch. We left for the harbor. Then the wind started to blow furiously and the sky was getting dark again. The ferry had a roof so we were at least safe from the wind. By the time we got to Bellagio the weather was getting better. The town itself looked pretty friendly. It has thousands of stairs and a lot of houses. What more do you need to love Italy?

After our walk in Bellagio we decided to rest in a restaurant. Then the rain started again…

 

journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
The important thing is that we are all in the picture. Other than that at this point we are arriving at Bellagio.
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
Humble cottage
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
Love is in the air
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna

 

Rain? No problem. Get on the ferry to Varenna.

There we were more than happy with our new umbrellas from the black market. We couldn’t even think about enjoying the narrow streets of the town. After a while trying to get oriented with a map we happily went for the station. There we were about to encounter the surprise for the day. There was no place we could buy tickets for the train. We started asking around. Soon we got the feeling that the only place, where we could get tickets, was the tourist information kiosk. So we needed to get back down the hill. The sign that said “This is the last place where you can buy tickets for the train” appeared to be telling the truth!

All of this was happening together with a lot of hurrying. If we missed that train the next one was an hour later. On top of all of that we were pretty wet and the bathroom wasn’t working (“It is not working, you idiot!”).

The funny thing was that we had passed the kiosk for tickets exactly when a car passed close to us and gave us a bath. Varenna apparently didn’t want us to leave.

journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna
We are strictly waiting for our train behind the yellow line

 

The train passed through tons of cliffs, forests and towns. We were rewarded with views towards the crying lake.

journey on Lake Como in Italy - towns Como, Bellagio and Varenna

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