Itinerary: Como, Lake Como
A short walk in Como to explore the parks, the eighteenth-century villas and the medieval monuments narrated by Manzoni
At first was George Clooney. Then came Robert De Niro, Bruce Springsteen, and many other celebrities. Today, Lake Como (pic n°1) has become one of the most sought-after holiday destinations among Manhattan and Hollywood people: many lawyers, financiers, and movie stars contend the most beautiful villas in millionaire auctions.
Indeed, Lake Como is one of the most beautiful areas in Italy, as it boasts breathtaking landscapes, historical and picturesque towns, elegant villas, Mediterranean-style gardens, a mild and pleasant climate. All these beautiful characteristics were already known in Roman times when Como was one of the main centers along Via Regina, a historical route that used to link the Po Valley with the northern areas of the Alps.
A nice walk throughout the city of Como (pic n°2) could start from the beautiful public garden near the lake, with an imposing Memorial to the Fallen of the Great War and Tempio Voltiano (Volta Temple), built in remembrance of Alessandro Volta, inventor of the electric batteries who was born in this city.
After a pleasant walk along the lakeshore, you can reach the neoclassical Villa Olmo (pic n°3), whose name comes from a magnificent elm that used to be in the villa's garden ("olmo" is the Italian word for elm).
Going back to the city center, Piazza Cavour is a magnificent square that overlooks the lake. From here, you head towards the historical center and get to the monumental Piazza Duomo, overlooked by the thirteenth-century Torre del Comune, built in 1927. Other remarkable buildings located in the square are Broletto, the historic home to the town hall, and the majestic Cathedral (pic n°4) dedicated to Santa Maria Assunta. The interiors are worth a visit thanks to the paintings, the altars and the decorated tapestries.
Walking along the quaint streets of Como is an attraction itself, being the city really charming in every corner. While walking, you can stop and have a deeper look at Basilica di San Fedele (pic n°5), a former Romanesque Cathedral, the Civic Museums, the Art Gallery, Piazza Vittoria, and Porta Torre, a twelfth-century tower-shaped fortification.
Just a few hundreds of meters away there is another beautiful city church, the Basilica di Sant'Abbondio (pic n°6), a masterpiece of the Romanesque style with its five-aisle decorated interiors, façade and two towers.