Cascina Respau- slow lake como partner- dinner

In these first years of activity on Lake Como we have collaborated with many special people, today we want to thank and talk to you about Ale and Katia. Cascina Respaù is, in fact, one of Slow Lake Como food partners.  Cascina Respau beautiful and unique, it is an ancient medieval farmhouse from the 16th century, immersed in the natural park of Spina Verde, on one of the hills above Como. The farm is also a hostel, perfect for people who want a peaceful atmosphere around.

The beauty of the place is given by its location in the middle of nature, and by the fact that you can arrive directly on foot, with a nice walk. Once you are in the Cascina, after “so much effort” to be welcomed by the owners Alessandro and Katia who will make you feel at home is very pleasant!

Starting from Cascina Respau there are many walking paths perfect to digest a tasty and local dish prepared at the Cascina with fresh and healthy ingredients, cooked with love by Ale and Katia.

“The secret of our kitchen?” Says Alessandro “In an age of dishes to be enjoyed only with eyes and brains we have brought taste to the center of the recipes!” In my opinion, the secret of their success is based on two factors: slow values and activities. They put more taste in the recipes, more heart in every dish prepared, and in order to do this, they wake up early in the morning and do everything by hand with natural ingredients. This is certainly one of the many reasons that make Ale, Katia and all the staff of Cascina Respau one of the fantastic collaborators of Slow Lake Como with whom to organize tastings, cooking classes or end the great tour and other activities!

Cascina Respau- slow lake como food partner

One of the just mentioned activities Slow Lake Como is organizing in partnership with Ale & Katia is called Food & Woods. If you want to live a night in Como as a real local, then this is the perfect event for you. During the warm seasons, locals love spending evenings with friends, in the woods outside the city center. During this experience, you will enjoy the coolness of the woods watching the sunset from the hills and the night will end by tasting some traditional food in a typical “baita” (Cascina)surrounded by trees. Baita is a typical tavern or restaurant of the area (usually reachable only by foot) where you can find simple but authentic food of the local tradition, which are difficult to find in the city center. There is a special ritual for this event: walk, eat, drink some wine and chat; socializing in the old fashion way. Every local has his own favorite baita and the challenge is to lead your friends in a new one they don’t know yet. Paths are simple to walk and, as they are on the hills surrounding the city center, it will be almost impossible to meet other tourists. This type of activity cannot be found on the cover of tourism magazines:  is an important place for locals, because it’s where we locals spent their childhood and where they still go to chill with our friend and families. Finally, there will be a visit to Slow Lake Como favorite baita, Cascina Respaù, to enjoy some local delicacies!Cascina Respau- slow lake como partner- dinnerMariya,
Discover the activities on Lake Como Italy with us, click here discover our tours! or ask about our tours in Lake Como
info@slowlakecomo.com mobile +39 392 027 9675.

NOT TO MISS:

The tours, courses, and events promoted by Slow Lake Como allow you to sample local products coming into contact with farmers, artisans and producers of local foods. 

"Spicy Como". The red-light history of the city- Lake Como Italy

If we ask to young people from Lake Como Italy for which reason is the Cortesella area known, they wouldn’t probably be able to answer. Nevertheless, we only were in the ‘30s when the district was about to restore the rough city zone from an activity always repressed as well as demanded.

For sure, the hidden secrets of the old town walls concerning a spicy and naughty past can at first surprise the reader because of the good reputation of Como. Anything new instead to Cristina Fontana, guide and researcher who wrote about the evolution of the prostitution phenomenon in her book ‘Como a luci rosse’: a real historical research from Roman age to nowadays.

The thing we can understand from Cristina’s book is that even though the prostitution centre has often changed due to the administration hostility, prostitutes didn’t stop practicing their (il)legal profession: when the two Plinii were ruling, there was a building for public prostitution, then in the Middle Age the public baths close to San Fedele’s church became the pleasure place until the construction of real brothels around 1400. The old Como brothels, three for the record, were all placed in the city centre near the Cathedral and obviously attracted customers looking for company, even from Swiss.

The situation caused the malaise of respectable citizens who were daily assisting these scenes to the point that authorities claimed the possible relocation of the brothels in the suburbs.

"Spicy Como". The red-light history of the city- Lake Como Italy

Nicole
Discover the towns on 
Lake Como Italy with us,
info@slowlakecomo.com mobile +39 392 027 9675. 

Orrido di Nesso: the hidden waterfall
The heritage of Musso & The Giardino del Merlo
Churches, Castles, Ancient Ports and Dream Landscapes. Rezzonico and Santa Maria.
Brienno.The Labyrinth Village
The Village of Hell. Lezzeno and the Devil’s Bridge.
Cantù is Beautiful! Galliano and the Museum of Wood

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Piazza Cavour is the starting point for an itinerary which allows us to capture some particular aspects of the city and the symbiotic relationship it always entertains with its lake. In ancient times this space, now a vast square with a modern character, was the commercial harbor. From here the view of the first basin of the lake is spectacular. Walking along the left side of the lake,  you see the  public gardens. In this area there are  monuments from the modern-age.

The Monument to the European Resistance is formed by  stairways and big metallic plates on the top of which there are engraved phrases by people deported during the war. At the end of the way is the Voltiano Temple. This classical white building, built in 1927 for the centenary of Alessandro Volta’s death, preserves documents, letters and the instruments that the famous scientist used for his studies. The collection includes an example of the famous electric torch. Near the Tempio Voltiano we can find the Monumento ai Caduti (War Memorial) built by Giuseppe Terragni in 1933 on a design by Antonio Sant’Elia, A little further over is the Sinigaglia Stadium built in 1927. At the crossing between the Sinigaglia and Vittorio Veneto streets, there is the important rationalist masterpiece by Terragni called Novocomum. An apartment block ironically baptised “the Transatlantic” by the citizens of Como. Walking again along the lake you reach the Aero Club Como, one of the last harbor for active hydroplanes in Italy. Here begins  the walk towards Villa Olmo. Along the promenade there are many magnificent villas. Villa La Rotonda,  designed by the famous neoclassical architect Leopold Pollack,  has a magnificent lounge with precious ornamental plaster work. Villa Gallia was built in 1600 and has a magnificent frescoed hall. Villa Parravicini is characterised by a precious kettledrum. Villa Mondolfo is made up of two buildings connected together by an elegant veranda.  The walk ends at the gates of Como’s most famous neoclassical house, Villa Olmo. The Villa was built at the end of the eighteenth century for the Odescalchi family, designed by the famous neoclassical architect, Simone Cantoni. Recently used for important temporary exhibitions, in the course of its history has hosted personalities like Napoleon and Garibaldi. Inside a splendid eighteenth-century theater. In those years the villa is the subject of important restoration work aimed at further enhancing their  beauties and botanical heritage.

To discover the inner soul of the city  you  can take part in one of our itineraries, events or courses in the area. Link a sezione discover

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In the principal square, the Piazza del Duomo, the Broletto rises, an antique town hall built in 1200, in white, grey and pink marble with stones from the Lake Como quarries. In the same century, besides the elegant arcade the town’s bell-tower was built.

The Duomo was built between the end of 1300 and the mid 1700s and it is a fusion of different architectural styles: starting from the late Gothic period with the structure up to the Renaissance style of the façade. The façade statues, principally designed by the Rodari Brothers, are astonishing. Very famous are  the two podiums representing the two renowned Como citizens, Plinio the Young and Plinio the Old, who lived in the Roman era. Just a few steps separate

the Duomo from the neoclassical theatre of the town, designed by the architect Cusi in the 1800’s.

Behind the Duomo is the ex “Casa del Fascio”.Masterpiece of the rationalist architect GiuseppeTerragni, built between 1932 and 1936  is considered one of the main  symbol of modern architecture.

Continuing on into the historic city centre there is the medieval square of San Fedele. Overlooking the square is the San Fedele basilica, built in the tenth century on a former Christian church.The chatedral is an example of pure  Romanesque style.Piazza San Fedele also hosts  two characteristic houses of the 1500’s, with a typical wooden structure.

At the edge of the old city is the Porta Torre, found in the centre of the powerful wallswhich Federico Barbarossa founded it in the twelfth century. In the same period was built  the Castle Baradello. Situated in a dominant position at the entrance of te town  is one of its symbols. Clearly visible from the city center requires a hike of a few hours to be reached.Outside the walls, along theancient Roman Via Regia, is the gem of Como’s Romanesque period, the Sant’Abbondio church.

The basilica was built by the Benedictine monks in 1013. The sequence of frescoes which adorn the apse with episodes of The Life of Christ, is magnificent, a masterpiece of the 1300’s by an anonymous artist.

Following along the slope of the hill, there is the ancient church of San Carpoforo. This church has an unusual structure with a raised presbytery and crypt which contains San Felice’s bones.

To discover the inner soul of the city  you  can take part in one of our itineraries, events or courses in the area. 

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The high part of Lake Como is one of the most charming areas of the region. Here you can enjoy endless excursion and

itineraries of different difficulty around the lake and mountains and the untouched valleys. There are also many villages worth visiting; the municipality of San Siro, for example, which includes the village  of  Rezzonico dominated by the massive structure of the fourteenth century castle built by the Della Torre. The area also surprising hidden corners such as the Giardini del Merlo in Musso, accessed byperserverance along the mountain side. The area north of Dongo is particularly interesting following the flow of the Albano stream, where you can still find old rural centres like Stazzona. This small village  located on the ancient route that crossed the S. Iorio pass and connected Lake Como to nearby Switzerland, today it is still famous for the presence of numerous “crotti” (restaurants in cavelike surroundings) where you can try all the  best local specialities. The upper part of the lake offers many opportunities to enjoy its clean waters for bathing or nautical sports.Thanks to the presence of its constant wind this is a real dream for lovers of windsurf and sailing in general

The religious importance of this area is enforced by the presence of many churches: the extraordinary Romanesque church of Santa Maria del Tiglio at Gravedona, incorporating a bell tower in its façade and built in the XII century. To visit the small but beautiful  San Fedelino oratory built on Lake Mezzola in the place where San Fedele supposedly became a martyr. On the western banks of the lakethere is Bellano, famous for its ravine made by the River Pioverna. Ravine is a big jump of water  that runs into the valley through rocks and gorges, crossed by stairways and foot-bridges for visitors. There are many other  points of attraction in the upper part of the lake. Dervio for example.  In this small village medieval houses and the church of Santi Pietro and Paolo stand beside the Romanesque bell tower.

Going up the main road, you can reach the village of Villa, where the church of S. Quirico stands, consecrated in 1628. Attractively backed onto a rocky spur which juts into the lake is the interesting  area of Corenno Plinio in the municipality of Dervio, with the beautiful 14th century castle. The town is very characteristic and preserves its medieval style, with tiny streets that back onto a small harbour on the lake.

The Piona Abbey stands in a wonderful position at the end of the Olgiasca peninsula. This is one of the most famous monuments on the lake for its historical, architectural and environmental value. The history of Piona begins in 610 A.C., when an oratory was founded on the peninsula, dedicated to Santa Giustina In 1138 it was consecrated next to the ruins of  another Romanesque building, of which only the apse remained.

To the northern extremity of Lake Como we find a particularly interesting area for landscape and nature. This is the protected oasis Pian di Spagna, located beyond the towns of Sorico, between the mouths of Mera and Adda rivers. This swampy area is an important nesting place for several species of birds which find here  their natural habitat.

This area was considered to be very important for its strategic position; the marsh was drained by the Romans and was occupied bySpanish encampments for the entire XVI century from which is how it became named the Piano di Spagna (The Spanish Plain). The Spanish defensive main structure was the fortress of Fuentes, located on the long isolated headland that rises from the plain. Built in the early XVII century the Fortress was demolished by Napoleone during the fi rst Campagna d’Italia (Italian Campaign). Over a century later  the Italian Royal army, before the GrandemGuerra (The Great War), initiated the building of another fortress on the near Montecchio hill. The fortress was completed at the end of 1914 and represents the most technological Italian innovation of World War One.

This is a summary of the places and the most famous monuments. To discover the inner soul of the lake  you  can take part in one of our itineraries, events or courses in the area.

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This is certainly the most popular area of Lake Como, Among the most important monuments there is Villa Carlotta, located between Tremezzo and Cadenabbia. It’s possible to visit to its gardens which are exceptional during the spring fl owering, andr its treasured artworks, including works by Canova, Hayez and Thorvaldsen, preserved inside.

Menaggio is a city full of charm and also a destination for explorers and trekking lovers. Villa Vigoni is a must see with its immense park. The centre area of the lake is also a starting point for wonderful  excursions in the panoramic mountains. Opposite Menaggio it is possible to admire Bellagio, “the Pearl of Lake Como”.  Bellagio is situated on the peaked headland that divides the two arms of the lake. This enchanting position  made this place a destination privileged to visits from many distinguished men, from Plinio the Young to Stendhal, from Manzoni to Parini, from Liszt to Toscanini. The town is divided into many hamlets that offer to the visitors varied landscapes. The most known is the hamlet of Borgo that develops around the landing place for boats. Here it is possible to go through stairways, small squares, shops and workshops in which the local craftsmen show the visitors their art. Going up the street that moves away from the pier, it is possible to reach two very interesting points: the panoramic Punta Spartivento and the church of San Giacomo. The first is located on the northern side of the town and offers a view of all three arms of the lake, framed by the mountains.

The basilica of San Giacomo on the other hand is situated in the church square. It was built in the XI century and although extensively refurbished, it is a clear example of Lombardian Romanesque style. On the shores of the lake there are the ancient villages of Pescallo, San Giovanni and Loppia, with their small harbours and gardens from the patrician villas, two of which are the Villa Serbelloni and Villa Melzi with their stunning gardens open to the public from Marchto October. On the Eastern shore of the lake It is highly recommended to visit the small town of Varenna which is located opposite to Bellagio’s peninsula and accessed by boats and ferries. The town, graciously located into the mountain landscape and dominated by the ruins of the Vezio castel is one of the most attractive of the lake. In Varenna it’s also  possible to walk  the panoramic and romantic “Passegiata degli Innamorati” (lovers’ walk). This pathway connects the centre of Varenna to Olivedo, arrival and departure point for ferries of the Navigazione Lago di Como (Lake Como Boat service), a pleasant and lively bathing area.

This is a summary of the places and the most famous monuments. To discover the inner soul of the lake  you  can take part in one of our itineraries, events or courses in the area. Link a sezione discover .

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This side is rich in ancient and picturesque villages and it’s ideal for people who wish to combine relax, nature and , cultural activities.

In the town of Mandello del Lario a stop is recommended to visit two religious monuments:  the sanctuary of the Madonna del Fiume and the Church of San Giorgio. The first was built between 1624 and 1627.

The second  is a small roman temple that hosts an astonishing  series of early medieval fresceos dedicated to the culture of death. This series of frescoes aim at illustrating the salvation plan for mankind against the capital vices illustrated on the facing fresco representing hell. As a s legend has it, a crusader founded the church, or

even possibly a Templar monk or even possibly a Templar monk. Also in Mandello is the museum of Moto Guzzi that tells the story of the motorbike from Lake Como. The itinerary continues to Lierna with the small medieval hamlet of Castello whose fortified structure is built to protect the small peninsula overhanging the water. Lierna, with its beaches, the “Riva Bianca” and the “Riva Nera”, is also one of the most visited and popular summer holiday resorts on the whole lake. On the opposite shore of the lake there is the Costieradegli Olivi. Malgrate, just in front of Lecco ,  welcomes the visitor with a romantic pier and a number of bars and restaurant  where is possible to taste local food. The road follows on to the tunnel beyond Parè di Valmadrera.   In this area there are quiet corners and many beaches visited by bathers in summer time. Onno, Vassena and Limonta are hamlets of Oliveto Lario, which takes its name from the cultivation of plants that produce tasty local green oil.

This is a summary of the places and the most famous monuments. To discover the inner soul of the lake  you  can take part in one of our itineraries, events or courses in the area. Link a sezione discover .

WESTERN ARM

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Land  of sudden and unexpected creeks, loops and gulfs, villas half-hidden or towering up above the water, picturesque villages that are set gently on the mounts crests, towers and little waterfalls, the western shore of Lake Como always offers the visitor’s eyes a new and everchanging landscape and prospective. It is possible to visit  the magic of these places by taking a boat, departing from  piazza Cavour in Como and docking in the main villages. Arriving at the wonderful village  of Cernobbio it is possible to see Villa Erba, nowadays a  convention and congress centre. A little further down there is Villa d’Este, nowadays a  Hotel with a wonderful park overlooking the lake. After the terraces of Villa Pizzo, the attention is caught by the elegance  of Villa Le Fontanelle. We are now in the municipality of Moltrasio This characteristic village was famous in the past for its dark grey lime stone quarries that  has been utilized to build many churches in the area. The position of  another villa, Villa Passalacqua,  is impressive, and famous is the façade of Villa Erker. The next village  is  Carate Urio, characterized by the Romanesque church  of the Saints Quirico and Giulitta, by the  structure of the “castle”, a sumptuous villa  built on the remains of an ancient fortification. After there is the village of Laglio with elegant villas. Then there is Brienno with its two churches of Romanesque origin. Brienno  nowadays preserves its charm of an ancient fishing village. Argegno,  with its characteristic bridge, is  the ideal starting point for a visit of the panoramic Vald’Intelvi . It is possible to enjoy a wonderful panoramic view by taking the cableway that connects  Argegno to Pigra, a village 900 metres above sea level. A little further on there is the the island of Lake Como Isola Comacina. The island is slightly longer then 600 metres and  It preserves the ruins of its illustrious past. Opposite  the island is a succession of beautiful villages with houses painted in light colours. Lenno,i s famous for the beautiful  Villa del Balbianello, for the incredible beauty of the Golfo di Venere and a small Romanesque baptistry from the end of the XI century. Following on the via Regina there is Mezzegra, famous as it was here that the shooting and execution of Benito Mussolini and Claretta Petacci took place.

On the other side , few kilometers past Como, sumptuous 19th century villas (such as Villa Cademartori, Pasta, Roccabruna) line the lake shores at Blevio, a small village that attracted many artists in the 1800s.

Further north, the picturesque village of Torno has some very interesting monuments. Its Romanesque church of San Giovanni has a beautiful 16th century marbledoor, old frescoes and a relic of the Sacred Nail of the Cross. There is also the mysterious Villa Pliniana The name of the Villa comes from a special intermittent spring, stily visible today, which caught Plinio’s interest.. Sarting froma Torno you can also make pleasant excursions in the surrounding mountains, such as the easy walk that leads to Monte Piatto, a small panoramic balcony. Passing the Villa Pliniana you reach Faggeto Lario. The mountain villages of the municipality are beautiful Molina, with its interesting late romantic bell tower from the XI century; Lemna, with a beautiful church dedicated to S. Giorgio and starting point for  excursions towardsmount Bolettone,  and Palanzo. This beautiful village, in an enchanting position,  it’s a  dream for  people looking for tranquillity, relaxation and splendid panoramic views.

Before reaching Nesso, we find  Careno. This small picturesque hamlet has a peculiar trinagle shape with its top directed towards the lake. We must also give mention to the XII century Church of S. Martino.. The village of Nesso  is famous for its ravine that with water gorges and cliffs drives the waters of the Nosè stream into the lake.

This is a summary of the places and the most famous monuments. To discover the inner soul of the lake  you  can take part in one of our itineraries, events or courses in the area. Link a sezione discover

Lake Como, Italy: sceneries that have enchanted the world, for centuries.

Hermann Hesse in his book Wandering Italy in the chapter “Walk on Lake Como” (it was the year 1913 on a boat near Torno) wrote: “Even the village, tiny and slightly steep, gave to the lake the harmonious enchantment of one of its sceneries: wide stone steps to serve as a docking place and for washing, at the foot of which some boats were moored, a house covered with vegetation, a quiet small square in clear stone with beneath the façade and the bell tower of a fine church and the pleasant half-round wall of the harbour overlooked by young trees. It was a painting of such harmonious perfection that at last I did not dare to disturb its grace.”

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The magnificent scenery of Lario, another name under which Lake Como is also known as, has charmed over the centuries numerous artists other than Hesse, including: the French writer Flaubert, the musicians Gioacchino Rossini, Giuseppe Verdi and Vincenzo Bellini, the latter in particular here found the inspiration to write the famous opera “Norma”.

The lake is the birthplace of eminent personalities such as the Italian physicist Alessandro Volta, inventor of the first generator of electric energy or the battery, whose relics are on display inside the temple erected in his honour in Como. In the city it is possible to retrace his history and his importance thanks to dedicated itineraries, also known as “itinerari voltiani”.

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Lake Como is situated within short distance (around 50 km) from Milan and lies in between the provinces of Como and Lecco; it is the third Italian lake by extension, after Lake Garda and Lake Maggiore, and is the deepest (410 metres). The lake, one of the most important in Lombardy and with a typical shape of an upside down Y, is made of three main branches: that of Como to the South-West, Lecco (cited by Manzoni in his famous incipit in The Betrothed) to the South-East and of Colico to the North.

Numerous beautiful villas are scattered among the branches of the lake, which has been the idyllic destination for the vacation and pleasure of the Lombard nobility since the beginning of the XVI century, while its main villages offer many hidden gems to be discovered. Como, the main city and administrative centre, from which the lake takes its name, has a millenary history and a role as a border city, between the Northern characters and the grandiosity of Rome and of the settlers coming from the Magna Greece. Como has a complex and rich history. It has exceptional monuments, Roman, Romanesque and Medieval, but is also considered the fatherland of Italian architectural and artistic Rationalism; here lie numerous examples of modern European architecture such as the Novocomum, the house Giuliani Frigerio, the War Memorial and the former Casa del Fascio (or House of the Fascist Emblem), all designed by the Italian architect Giuseppe Terragni. It is possible to discover these fine examples of architecture following dedicated rationalist itineraries.

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In Cernobbio, it is worth paying a visit to the sixteenth-century Villa d’Este, used by Alfred Hitchcock as the location of the movie “Garden of Pleasure”, and the famous Villa Erba, one of the most important 19th century Italian villas on the lake. Further to the North, lies the village of Ossuccio, famous for the presence of the only island on the lake just in front of it and for the Sacred Mountain of Ossuccio, recognised by UNESCO as a universal heritage site. In the villages by the shore of Moltrasio and Lenno also lie Villa Passalacqua and Villa Balbianello. They are famous for the perfect symbiosis with the surrounding scenery.

Along the coastline, lies Tremezzo and its famous Villa Carlotta, with the garden terraces famous all over the world and the museum enriched with works by Canova and Hayez.

At the meeting of the three lake branches, lies the gem of Bellagio with its elegant and magnificent aristocratic villas, among which Villa Serbelloni and Villa Melzi, the latter famous for its botanic park. The area is also one of the main destinations for the worldwide cycling. The Giro d’Italia passes every year by Bellagio and from here thousands of amateur and professional cyclists challenge themselves by cycling the steep hill up to Ghisallo whose narrow bends have seen the best performances of famous champions such as Coppi, Bartali and Pantani. At the top of the hill, there is the museum of cyclism, one of the richest in memorabilia around the world and with a simple and moving chapel by which it is said every true cyclist should pass at least once in a lifetime.

From Bellagio to the South, you arrive in Lecco. Surrounded by breath-taking mountain scenery where famous mountaineers have trained, such as Cassin, Lecco is less famous than Como but has fine views and is still largely unexplored. Here, a visit to Villa Manzoni is imperative. The site of a museum dedicated to the famous Italian writer is also the starting point for an itinerary to retrace the steps of his most notorious work, The Bethroted.

From Bellagio to the North, it is possible to visit the splendid villages of Varenna, Bellano and Colico, where lies the Abbey of Piona.

Together with the historical-cultural vocation of Lake Como, there are also nature loving and sporting activities that can be easily practiced. Mountaineers can climb, and there are plenty of hill trekking trails, mountain bike trails, and hiking areas.

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The foodies who love good food and want to know more about the wine and food traditions of the area have the opportunity to discover the dishes and the unique products that the lake has to offer including the risotto with perch fish, the fine olive oil from Lake Como, the numerous vegetables (among which the asparagus from Cantello and surrounding areas) and obviously numerous dishes with fish from the lake such as missoltini (salted and dessicated fish, shad, that is pressed and marinated with vinegar and oil).

This is just a brief overview of what the territory has to offer and of its fascination. We invite you to enjoy in person the true beauty of what has been described that has charmed tourists and celebrities all over the world, but also to go beyond normal touristic things. Every village, every little neighbourhood, has its own peculiar character. Some metres beyond the mainstream monuments, you can find hidden gems that are poorly or almost completely unknown to the most.

Lake Como has a deep and complex beauty which is the perfect destination for the tourist who likes going beyond the surface.

The secret side of Lake Como (in Italy) is just under the glamorous surface. Lake Como in Italy has become one of the most known landscapes on the planet and probably you have had a glimpse of it as the setting for a multi-millionaire wedding or the holiday vacation of celebrities and VIPs from all over the world. At first, it was George Clooney followed by Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie, Robert De Niro, Matt Damon and Catherine Zeta-Jones to name few of them. However, there is more to know beyond its glamorous surface, it conceals, in fact, a secret life, deep, somehow mysterious. Away from the mainstream monuments and well-known routes, there are some perfect destinations for those who are curious to search for the unexpected and hidden gems, surrounded by mysteries and local legends. A famous local singer Davide van desfros is convinced there is a very Dark Way of Lario – the other name of Lake Como.

There are some infinite possibilities about what to do and see around the lake and its surroundings. Some places are already part of a collective imagination and must be safeguarded. Nevertheless, it is impossible to elicit its deep essence by visiting only the mainstream and most known places. The area is worthy of being explored, discovered and this requires time. Such time is rewarded by the intensity of an unforgettable experience. This is the reason why Lake Como is the ideal destination for the slow tourism of those who want to understand, live and breathe the atmosphere of the area.

The first thing to decide when choosing what to do and see on Lake Como is to think about which means of transportation is the most suitable to your needs. It is worthy to say that many mansion houses or shores can be reached only via the lake, some incredible and scenic monuments can be accessed only through rugged trails and unpaved tracks, many routes are narrow and windy.

Do not be afraid though. Wayfarers, pilgrims, and traders have all wandered across this land. If you like walking, if you love giving yourself the time to explore the places without the obsession of using the car, you will find ancient and breathless trails, a well-organized ferry service which can take you where car and bus drivers do not dare to go.

slowlakecomo-33By the way, the way of life on the lake is a true philosophy and to absorb yourself within its territory is the best choice to truly understand it. We have selected some hidden gems and less known places and you will discover more by searching our website. Feel at ease while you let yourself wander among small hidden beaches, tiny villages on the edge of scenic cliffs over the lake, mysterious and unusual monuments, wild and beautiful scenery, meadows where witches are said to be present and erratic rocks.

Discover our favorite activities:

Cooking Class: Learn How to Make Homemade Pasta
Rebellious Lake Como. Border Paths Among the Great War and Smuggling  (hiking)
Como Mysteries and Curiosities (urban tour)

See all the Slow Lake Como activities