12 Best Things to Do in Lake Como, Italy | 2024 (with Photos)

Lara Mega

Lara Mega - Head of Content

Last Updated: March 25, 2024

Hey there! I'm Lara, an avid traveler and adventure enthusiast with a passion for exploring hidden gems and discovering unique experiences in every destination I visit. Join me on a journey to uncover the top attractions and activities that await you in the stunning Lake Como, Italy.

Unforgettable Things to Do in Lake Como

A visit to Lake Como, also known as Lago di Como, is an experience of northern Italy that promises to enchant and captivate. Nestled in the picturesque Italian region of Lombardy, this stunning lake offers a plethora of attractions and activities to indulge in.

From the breathtaking scenery that was the filming location of several Hollywood movies, to the remarkable Italian gardens and amazing restaurants, Lake Como is a haven for nature lovers and culture enthusiasts alike.

Immerse yourself in the beauty of the lake's surroundings as you explore the best attractions it has to offer. Indulge your taste buds with delectable cuisine at the fantastic restaurants dotting the towns on the side of the lake.

Get ready to embark on a memorable journey through the wonders of Lake Como with our list of 12 unforgettable things to do in Lake Como.

Most Recommended Thing to Do

Top Choice Hotel

Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Our Top Choice Restaurant

Our Top Choice Bar for Nightlife

Bar Tre Rose

Best Time to Visit

Spring or Autumn provide ideal weather for visiting.

Average Temperature

Lake Como Italy - Average temperature, cool and pleasant.

Transportation Options

Boat, ferry, bus, car, train, bike, walking, taxi.

Average Cost ($, $$, $$$)


My Top Recommendation

Take a stroll along the picturesque lakeside promenade, where you can witness the dazzling beauty of the sparkling waters juxtaposed with the enchanting architecture of the colorful buildings that adorn its edges.

Marvel at the magnificent Como Cathedral or indulge in some retail therapy at the elegant boutique shops that line the bustling squares. Afterward, don't forget to relax and unwind at one of the many cafes, sipping on a fragrant cup of Italian espresso while savoring the awe-inspiring views of the lake and surrounding mountains.

What You'll Need to Bring

  1. Passport
  2. Travel adapter
  3. Comfortable walking shoes

What Not to Miss

  1. Villa del Balbianello
  2. Bellagio
  3. Villa Carlotta
  4. Como Cathedral
  5. Funicular Railway

What to Avoid

  1. Crowded tourist spots
  2. Overpriced restaurants
  3. Unlicensed taxis

1. Relax at Villa Carlotta

Villa Carlotta

When visiting Lake Como, a visit to Villa Carlotta is a must for those seeking tranquility and the natural beauty of gorgeous gardens. This stunning villa is renowned for its exquisite Villa Carlotta's Botanical Gardens, where you can unwind and immerse yourself in a serene oasis.

Explore the terraced gardens of Villa Carlotta, adorned with vibrant flowers and lush greenery, creating a picturesque setting that will leave you in awe.

Take strolls along the winding pathways of Villa Carlotta, breathe in the fragrant scents, and marvel at the carefully curated collection of plants and trees.

The lush gardens of Villa Carlotta offer a peaceful retreat, inviting you to relax and rejuvenate amidst the splendor of Lake Como.

2. Spend some time at Villa Melzi

Villa Melzi

During your visit to Lake Como, make sure to spend some time at Villa Melzi, a gem nestled along the lake's shores.

The elegant Villa Melzi boasts stunning gardens that are a true delight to explore. Wander through the beautiful gardens, adorned with vibrant flowers, meticulously manicured lawns and charming pathways.

In the summer months, the gardens of Villa Melzi come alive with bursts of color, creating a mesmerizing spectacle for travelers.

As you stroll through the gardens of Villa Melzi, take in the panoramic views framed by the majestic mountains surrounding Lake Como in the distance. 

It's a serene and enchanting place to unwind and soak in the beauty of this remarkable destination.

3. Explore Villa del Balbianello

Villa del Balbianello

Situated at the tip of a lush peninsula of the Lake Como, Villa Balbianello offers a captivating blend of natural beauty and architectural grandeur.

As you approach the enchanting Villa Balbianello, you'll be greeted by breathtaking views of the surrounding mountains and the shimmering waters of Lake Como.

Take a stroll through the well-manicured beautiful gardens of Villa del Balbianello, adorned with vibrant flowers and towering rare trees. Immerse yourself in the serene atmosphere as you explore the villa's elegant interiors, adorned with priceless artwork and antiques.

What makes Villa Balbianello even more remarkable is its convenient location within walking distance from nearby towns, allowing visitors of the lake to easily access this jewel of Northern Italy's architectural heritage.

4. Take a boat tour of the lake

Cadenazzi Classic Boat Tours

To truly experience Lake Como, embark on one of the captivating boat tours of the lake that allow you to immerse yourself in its breathtaking beauty. Explore Lake Como from the water on this unique day trip on a lake steamer.

Lake Como offers a variety of boat trips on the lake and tours that allow you to explore its crystal-clear waters and picturesque surroundings. Hop aboard a boat and feel the gentle breeze as you cruise along the shimmering lake on this boat trip.

Marvel at the charming lakeside towns, elegant villas, and magnificent mountains that frame the landscape. A boat ride on Lake Como provides a unique perspective, offering unrivaled views and a sense of tranquility.

Whether you opt for a leisurely sightseeing tour or a thrilling adventure, a boat tour of the lake is an amazing activity that allows you to fully appreciate the enchantment of Lake Como.

5. Visit Lake Como lakeside towns

lakeside towns

A visit to Lake Como is incomplete without exploring its charming lakeside towns and their tourist attractions. Lake Como's towns include Como Town, Bellagio, and Varenna.

Begin your journey in Como Town, the main hub of the lake, where you can wander through its narrow streets and soak up the atmosphere of the town center. Stroll along the promenade, lined with cafes and shops, and admire the stunning architecture that reflects the region's rich history, such as the stone walls and tower gate.

Venture beyond Como Town to discover other towns that dot the lake's shores and are equally picturesque. Each town has its unique character and allure. 

From the village of Bellagio with its winding streets and stunning vistas to the romantic town of Varenna with its charming waterfront promenade, every lakeside town offers its own enchanting experience.

Immerse yourself in the local culture, indulge in authentic Italian cuisine at the local trattorias, and enjoy leisurely walks along the lakefront. 

Visiting Lake Como's lakeside towns is a delightful way to immerse yourself in the region's beauty and embrace the relaxed pace of life that this idyllic destination offers.

6. Unwind at Villa Monastero

Villa Monastero

For a peaceful and rejuvenating experience, Villa Monastero is one of the best Lake Como attractions. Originally a Cistercian convent, this historic site now serves as a conference center and a tranquil retreat for visitors of the lake.

Explore the terraced gardens, adorned with colorful flowers and lush greenery, offering a serene atmosphere perfect for relaxation and contemplation. Take a stroll along the winding paths, and admire the scenic beauty that surrounds you.

The stunning views of Lake Como from the villa's vantage point are truly captivating. 

Villa Monastero's idyllic setting and picturesque gardens make it one of the best attractions on Lake Como, offering a serene escape from the bustling world.

Whether you attend a conference or simply desire a moment of tranquility, Villa Monastero provides a serene and inviting ambiance that will leave you feeling refreshed and inspired. 

Don't miss the opportunity to unwind amidst the beauty of Villa Monastero during your visit to Lake Como.

7. Have lunch at Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Grand Hotel Tremezzo

Indulge in a luxurious dining experience at the renowned Grand Hotel Tremezzo, nestled in the stunning region of northern Italy on the shores of Lake Como.

This iconic hotel offers not only exquisite accommodations but also a gastronomic delight for visitors of the lake. 

Treat yourself to a delectable lunch at one of the hotel's restaurants while enjoying the amazing views of Lake Como.

After your meal, take advantage of the hotel's private beach and soak up the sun while admiring the breathtaking surroundings. 

The Tremezzo stands apart from the luxury villas that line the lake, offering a perfect blend of elegance and charm.

To easily find the location, you can take a rental car and use Google Maps to navigate your way to this remarkable establishment. 

A visit to Tremezzo is not only a culinary experience but also a chance to immerse yourself in the enchantment of Lake Como's beauty.

8. Walk around Piazza del Duomo

Piazza del Duomo

Nested between a steep hill and Lake Como, Piazza Duomo is a vibrant and centrally located square that shouldn't be missed when you visit Como.

Take a stroll through the square, surrounded by charming cafes, shops, and historic buildings. In mid-March, the square comes alive with the colors and aromas of blooming flowers of botanical gardens, creating a picturesque atmosphere.

Immerse yourself in the lively ambiance of Piazza Duomo and soak in the rich history and culture that surrounds you. 

It's a delightful spot to relax, people-watch, and savor the authentic Italian atmosphere of the lake town.

9. Stroll through Sentiero Del Viandante

Sentiero Del Viandante

For nature enthusiasts and hikers, exploring the Sentiero Del Viandante is an unforgettable experience when visiting Lake Como.

This scenic trail winds its way along the southern end and eastern side of the lake, as well as its western shore, offering breathtaking views and opportunities to immerse yourself in the region's beauty on a unique day trip.

As you stroll along the trail, you'll encounter charming villages, picturesque landscapes, and the enchanting presence of Lake Como. One notable highlight along the way is the sight of a walled castle, adding a touch of history and intrigue to your journey.

Whether you're seeking a leisurely walk or a more challenging hike, Sentiero Del Viandante caters to different skill levels and provides a chance to appreciate the stunning surroundings that Lake Como has to offer.

Lace up your hiking boots, breathe in the fresh air, and embark on a memorable adventure along this scenic trail of Lake Como.

10. Admire the Como Cathedral

Como Cathedral

A visit to Lake Como would not be complete without admiring the magnificent Como Cathedral, also known as the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta.

This iconic architectural masterpiece is located in the heart of Como and stands as a symbol of the city's rich history and devotion. As you approach the cathedral, you'll be captivated by its grandeur and intricate details.

Step inside to marvel at the stunning interior adorned with beautiful artwork and intricate frescoes. The centerpiece of the cathedral is the breathtaking altarpiece dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary. 

The cathedral is not only a spiritual haven but also a testament to the artistry and craftsmanship of the Italian Republic on the Lake Como.

Take your time to explore this sacred place, appreciate its rich heritage, and embrace the tranquility within. The Como Cathedral is an attraction that showcases the magnificence of Lake Como's cultural and religious heritage.

11. Discover Villa Serbelloni

Villa Serbelloni

Situated in the charming town of Bellagio, Villa Serbelloni is a true gem of Lake Como.

This historic villa on Lake Como boasts a rich history that dates back to the 15th century and offers a captivating blend of beauty and architectural splendor.

As you explore the villa's grounds, you'll be enchanted by its well-manicured gardens, adorned with vibrant flowers and lush greenery.

The panoramic views of Lake Como from Villa Serbelloni are simply breathtaking, providing an idyllic backdrop for walks and peaceful moments of reflection.

12. Enjoy the lakeside promenades

lakeside promenades

Lake Como's lakeside promenades are a true delight for visitors of the lake, offering a chance to soak in the breathtaking beauty of the surroundings while taking strolls along the water's edge.

These picturesque paths, lined with lakeside gardens, provide a serene escape from the bustling world around Lake Como city center. 

As you wander along the promenades, you'll be enchanted by the stunning views of the lake, framed by majestic mountains.

The tranquil ambiance and fresh air of Lake Como create the perfect setting for relaxation and contemplation. It's no wonder that even famous movie scenes, such as those from Star Wars, have been captured against the backdrop of Lake Como's enchanting promenades.

FAQs: Unforgettable Things to Do in Lake Como

In this section, we provide answers to common questions that readers have regarding things to do in Lake Como.

How long should you spend in Lake Como, Italy?

A few days is enough to enjoy the main attractions of Lake Como. However, if you want to explore and enjoy the scenery of Lake Como at its full potential, it is better to take at least a week to explore the nature of the lake thoroughly.

What is Lake Como, Italy best known for?

Lake Como is best known for its luxury villas and remarkable nature. Moreover, Lake Como is known as the filming location of multiple world-known movies from Hollywood production. In any case, Lake Como will leave you speechless.

Is there a lot to do in Lake Como, Italy?

There is a lot to do around Lake Como, from exploring villas such as Villa Balbianello, to boat trips on the very lake. For outdoor enthusiasts, the hiking trail around Lake Como offers charming sights of the most notable attractions.

Is Lake Como, Italy worth visiting?

Lake Como in Italy is worth visiting. From its charming villas to the amazing nature of Lake Como, to the villages on its sides, the lake features something for every taste. If Lake Como was not worth visiting, it wouldn't be a world-widely popular filming spot.

Summing up: Best Things to Do in Lake Como

Lake Como, or Lago di Como in Italian, offers a wide range of experiences that will leave you enchanted.

Once in Lake Como Area, you can explore the lake botanical gardens of Villa Carlotta and Villa Melzi, while Villa Balbianello beckons with its stunning architecture.

Embark on a boat tour to fully appreciate the majesty of the Lake Como, and wander through charming lakeside towns that exude history and charm. Unwind at Villa Monastero, and immerse yourself in the cultural richness of the Como Cathedral and Villa Serbelloni.

Lake Como awaits your discovery—come and create unforgettable memories in this captivating destination. Start planning your adventure today and let Lake Como's allure captivate your senses.