An Afternoon in Menaggio on Lake Como, Italy

Guest Post By: Margie Miklas

With a population of 3200, Menaggio is one of the larger but less touristy towns along the shores of Lake Como.  Across the lake from Varenna and Bellagio, Menaggio offers views of both of these smaller towns from its shores. I decided to check it out on my recent stay in Lake Como.

Menaggio is not that big so a walking tour is perfect to enjoy the architecture and scenery and browse the shops. Piazza Garibaldi is the main area around the ferry harbor, and from this area buses can take you to other locations on the mainland. The "old town" of Menaggio is located near here and the cobblestoned streets, ancient doors and the Baroque church of Santo Stefano all were reason enough for me to enjoy an afternoon here. Following signs to il Castello, you can walk uphill to the remnants of an ancient castle which was demolished in the 16th century. Pieces of the medieval wall still exist today near there.Menaggio on Lake Como, Italy

Menaggio is less known for its shopping and better known for its sporting activities such as hiking. For serious  hikers Menaggio is a good location to use as a base, especially since there are 12 separate trails leading into the hills above, and the lodging is much cheaper here than in Varenna or Bellagio. Hiking seems to be a major pastime here; in fact I met some Australians who were here specifically for that reason.  Old door in Menaggio, Lake Como, Italy

Other sports activities here include kayaking, cycling, and water skiing. Menaggio is one of the few towns on Lake Como with a public swimming pool. The 25 meter pool is called "Lido" and is open from Late June to mid September.

Menaggio is also famous for its annual Guitar Festival held every August since its beginning in 2005. The festival attracts famous guitarists both from Italy and across the world.

Every 2nd and 4th Friday here the markets are open in the center of town, and these are always fun events, where you can buy almost anything for a fraction of the cost that retail shops charge. Some handmade items and fresh produce and flowers are also readily available at these markets.

Piazza Garibaldi in Menaggio, Lake Como, ItalyI stopped in at Pasticceria Manzoni for a cappuccino and to sample some of the local dolci. I tasted some type of apple and raisinMenaggio apple and raisin cake Lake Como, Italy cake that was delicious, and the shopkeeper informed that this was a type of sweet cake specific to this region. 

For those avid golfers Menaggio is home to one of the oldest golf courses in Italy, The Menaggio and Cadenabbia Golf Club.  Established by the English in 1907this 18 hole golf club is very popular especially with the tourists from the United Kingdom and Australia.

Before I got on the ferry, I had to try some gelato from what looked like the best gelato place since there was a line. Gelateria Edo in Piazza Garibaldi certainly did not disappoint and was the perfect end to my afternoon in Menaggio.

Guest Post By: Margie Miklas

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Travel Photo Of The Day- Bellagio, Italy, Lake Como

Bellagio, Italy on Lake Como

Photo By Margie Miklas

Bellagio, Italy, Lake Como

Bellagio is located at the intersection of 3 arms of Lake Como, and is also located at the foot of the Alps. This provides for a magnificent view practically anywhere you look. Bellagio is not a big city, as it only has about 3500 residents that live there full time. Many of the people are visitors who go and enjoy the activities, the food, and the scenery.

For more information and destinations in Italy check out Beachcomber Pete Travel Adventures Italy


Pescallo – A Short Walk from Bellagio on Lake Como

Guest Post By: Margie Miklas

Pescallo is a small quiet village on Lake Como and is located less than a mile from the larger resort town of Bellagio. Having read about this place as being a little fishing community away from the tourist area, I was interested to see it for myself. On my recent visit to Lake Como and Bellagio I started exploring and found that it was only short walk and I was in Pescallo.

Pescallo, Lake Como, ItalyThe walk to Pescallo may be short but it is not that simple. For anyone who has difficulty navigating steps or uneven walkways, this is not for you. Although Bellagio is at the water’s edge, the town is built on a hill. There are various staircases rather than streets because of the steep topography, and the names of these walkways reflect that they are staircases, e.g. Salita Monastero. The term Italian word salita means climb.  The path to Pescallo cannot be reached on foot except by walking uphill first in Bellagio.

Steps to Pescallo, Lake Como, ItalyThe main road in Bellagio at the top of the hill is Via Giuseppe Garibaldi and eventually leads to the town hall or municipio.  Just across from that town hall is a paved footpath that goes off to the left with a small sign indicating Salita Cappuccini and this goes towards Pescallo.  The walk down is less than ten minutes away and consists of part path and part staircase. There are more steps than you think possible, and after turning a corner, there is another set of steps, and another and another. They are quite steep in places and this continues for awhile. Eventually Pescallo is just ahead after turning right onto Via E. Sfrondrati

Pescallo looks like a postcard and is truly an enchanting and lovely little fishing community. Only a few people are around and there are ducks in the water and boats pulled up on the shore.  Reminiscent of a scene from a movie, a couple sits on a bench in the quiet solitude of Pescallo.

One of the two hotels in Pescallo is the family operated La Pergola and its covered outdoor restaurant sits right on the water. This 14 th century restored convent is the perfect location for a drink or a meal while enjoying il dolce far niente, or the sweetness of doing nothing.

For a little respite from the crowds and activity of beautiful Bellagio, take the walk to Pescallo and don’t forget to bring your camera.

Guest Post By: Margie Miklas

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