Locanda dell'Isola Comacina

The lake
Lake Como was discovered over 2,000 years ago by the Romans who choose it as one of their favoured retreats. In 49 B.C. Julius Caesar conquered Como and populated it with 5,000 colonists and named the lake Larius. The most famous sons of Como, then known as Novum Comum, were the two Plinys: Pliny the Elder, author of a celebrated Natural History in 37 books and his nephew, Pliny the Younger, a prose author. Since the first century A.D. holiday villas have been very popular in Como; Pliny the Younger had two on the lake, one called Comedy and the other Tragedy.
In the 19th century, Longfellow came to Lake Como to write, as did Tennyson.
Composer Franx Liszt came here in 1837 and wrote his symphony "Dante", Bellini wrote his opera Norma and the dancer Taglioni lived at Blevio. Until World War II the lake was considered a paradise. The tragic events of 1945, whose climax was reached with the shooting of Mussolini and Claretta Petacci at Dongo, cast on the scenery a shadow which however was soon to disappear.

While visiting this area don't miss the following sights:

Villa Carlotta
Built in the 18th century in Tremezzo, it houses art treasures (masterpieces by Canova and Thorvaldsen). It is well known for its Azaleas and Rhododendron and its botanical gardens.

Villa Balbianello.
Located at Lenno on a promontory near the Island and blessed with a scenic garden, the villa was built by Cardinal Durini in the 18th century.
The villa owes its present aspect to its latest owner, the explorer Guido Monzino, who donated it to the F.A.I. (Italian National Trust for Environment) in 1988.
Both the villa and its gardens can be visited by appointment only.

Villa Passalacqua
Perched in upper Moltrasio its property runs from high up in the village all the way down to the lakeís shore. Built in the 1700ís, this magnificent lake house was designed by Felice Soave, one of the regionís most important architects, and the elaborate interior created by the illustrious Giocondo Albertolli.


Villa Balbianello

Villa Carlotta