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Visit Bellagio

Bellagio: a glamorous and romantic destination on Lake Como

Bellagio is a small jewel located on the promontory that separates the two southern branches of Lake Como, those culminating in the cities of Como and Lecco. The well-known “Pearl of Lake Como” is home to a colorful historic center, beautiful gardens (parks of Villa Serbelloni and Villa Melzi), charming neighborhoods (such as Pescallo or San Giovanni), and much more. Its central location makes Bellagio perfect for visiting beautiful surrounding towns such as Varenna, Tremezzina or Menaggio, where you can easily arrive by boat!

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The town centre, a colourful ensemble of alleys and shops

The old town, with its many small stores located along narrow, stepped streets, passageways and arcades, is world-renowned and attracts thousands of tourists each year. For centuries, its scenic location has enchanted artists and writers from all over the world. With its mild winter and pleasant summer, its historical town centre, its lush and varied flora, Bellagio is the ideal place for those who like calm and walks. For those who are more energetic, it also offers many sport and leisure activities.
During the summer there is whole range of water sports to choose from, while in the winter there are three ski-lifts on Monte San Primo. The Romanesque churches are of considerable architectural interest. In the upper part of the town, next to a tower – the only remains of the ancient system of defence – one can see the basilica of San Giacomo, which was built by the Maestri Comacini.

Bellagio and its amazing villas

Bellagio is famous for its villas and their parks. Here, along with the local-flora, there are rare and exotic plants in splendid Italian or English style gardens. The park of Villa Serbelloni is considered to be one of the most beautiful in Italy and it takes about two hours to visit all.

Villa Serbelloni

One of the most beautiful parks in the world!

The park of Villa Serbelloni covers almost the entire promontory of Bellagio and about 21 hectares. Here you can enjoy unique landscapes over the area and discover the fascinating history behind this almost magical place. The view is very captivating, with its paths surrounded by vegetation and embellished with terraces and statues.

The history of Villa Serbelloni

The park of Villa Serbelloni extends over the steep promontory separating the two branches of the lake, where, according to tradition, Plinio the Younger owned a villa called Tragoedia (Tragedy). The park is owned by The Rockefeller Foundation, which by courtesy authorizes the City of Bellagio to organize guided tours, and proceeds from the tours are donated to subsidize social and cultural activities.

The original layout of the villa dates back to the 1400s and was built at the behest of Marchesino Stanga, feudal lord. In 1788 it passed to Count Alessandro Serbelloni, a member of one of the noblest and richest families in Lombardy, who devoted himself to it, concentrating mainly on the construction of the immense outdoor park. Upon the count’s death, the villa passed from property to property and, in the late 1800s, was converted into a hotel. The complex was later acquired by the American Ella Walker, Princess Della Torre and Tasso, who decided to live there again, later donating it upon her death to the Rockefeller Foundation. Today the villa is the site of conventions and study stays of the Foundation.

Where to eat in Bellagio

After a lovely boat tour, be sure to stop in one of the following restaurants to enjoy a wonderful meal.

Cava Turacciolo

At the entrance to Salita Genazzini is a fully restored 18th-century wine cellar. Inside, a choice of more than three hundred local and national wine labels can be tasted in combination with a selection of cured meats, cheeses, cold meats, lake fish and hot pasta dishes.

Aperitivo Et Al

Open since 2007 it’s a Wine Bar, open daily, offering 40 wines by the glass, 600 different labels and a small menu with local products. They give the opportunity to match wines to their menu, with the suggestion of their Sommelier. Here you will have the opportunity to choose to taste a glass or explore the most representative wines of Italy. They have a small wine cellar, with more than 1500 bottles, and they give the opportunity to buy wine to take home, and offer the service of shipping the wines to Italy and abroad.

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