Self-Guided Hiking Tours

Italy | Italian Lakes District: Como and Bellagio

It's not just for celebrities. Hikers love it here too!

  • Como and Bellagio Tour
  • "First we’d like to thank you for arranging a wonderful trip. We all found Lake Como an amazing place, and a beautiful place to hike around. Of course, the Italian food is always a treat at the end of the day."- Warren and Judy Goodnow

Trip Highlights:

  • Relaxing stays in the famous lakeside villages of Como, Bellagio and Menaggio.
  • Stunning views of the Alps, including Monte Rosa (15,203 feet), the highest mountain in Switzerland and the second highest peak in Western Europe.
  • Hiking along ancient roads to hilltop churches, medieval villas and mountain huts serving delicious Italian specialities.

If Lake Como, Italy is best known for its lavish villas, authentic Italian cuisine and romantic lakeside views, then its best kept secret is the surrounding mountains and the myriad hiking trails that explore them. Glacially carved over 10,000 years ago, and forming the shape of an upside-down Y, Lake Como offers remote and beautiful day hikes, exquisite accommodations, and a sumptuous taste of Italy.

You’ll begin this hiking tour of Lake Como in the medieval town of Varenna. Often called “the pearl of Lake Como,” Varenna beguiles visitors with its colorfully painted houses, a hilltop castle and romantic waterfront views. From Varenna, you’ll circumnavigate the picturesque middle portion of Lake Como, enjoying scenic mountain vistas by day, and lakeside views by night.

Transfers by water ferry allow you to enjoy the tranquility and calm beauty of the lake, while adventurous day hikes access the ridges and mountain tops that form the stunning backdrop around the lake. From the winding streets and decadent villas of Bellagio, to the Roman footpaths, olive groves, and medieval villages that pepper the landscape between Menaggio and Lenno, this hike offers a wonderful opportunity to sample old Italy while enjoying views of the Alps most notable mountain ranges and peaks.

Trip Itinerary

Travel independently by rail to the lakeside town of Varenna, Italy. Treat yourself to a tranquil walk along the water and enjoy the evening lakeside breeze. Overnight in a four star, lovingly restored lakefront villa located in the atmospheric heart of Varenna. (Dinner on your own this night).

Today’s hike is a pleasant ramble through high alpine environment of the Gringa Massif, famous as a training ground for world-class mountaineers. Traverse beneath the Piancaformia ridge to the Rifugio Bietti for lunch with views of the high surrounding peaks of the Alps in the distance and the lake below. On a clear day, this includes excellent views of the Bernina Massif as well as Monte Rosa in the west, the highest peak in the Engadine region of Switzerland. For a truly challenging return, climb to the Bocchetta Guzzi behind the refuge. (Dinner on your own this night).

Begin today’s hike with a water ferry ride to Menaggio, and then a short bus transport to the small town of Breglia in the hills above Menaggio. Hike to a fine lunch of regional Italian cuisine at the rifugio served with some of the best views of the lake.

Today, you start our hike from Menaggio by getting on a bus to Cadenabbia to begin the infamous Greenway del Lago di Como. The Greenway is a nice walkway going through the villages of Tremezzo, Mezzegra, Ossuccio, Sala Comacina, and Colonno. Walk along the lake’s coastline. You’ll visit Villa Carlotta built in the sixteenth century in Tremezzo and it’s lovely gardens as well as the intriguing Villa Balbianello once you arrive in Lenno. Ferry to Bellagio and overnight in your lakeside hotel.

Today’s hike begins with a ferry back to Lenno. Embark on a historic tour along an old Roman road to the eleventh century Monasterio Benendetto. Return to Lenno via the Maddonna del Soccorso, a UNESCO world heritage site. There is an option to hike up to the ridgeline Rifugio Bufalora. Ferry to your hotel in Bellagio.

Today’s hike offers spectacular hiking and scenery along mule or cart tracks built and used by the Romans along with easy rambling trails. Pick up a picnic lunch and start the day with a taxi ride to Piana dei Sormano. You’ll follow a meandering carriage road and trail thereafter to Passo Bocchetta di Molina to enjoy your lunch. Continue all the way to the Brunate funicular just above Como for a pleasant ride into Como. Tonight you’ll stay in a contemporary hotel in ‘old town’ Como. (Dinner on your own this night).

Depart via train to Milan

Italian Lakes District: Como and Bellagio | Italy

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