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  • Writer's pictureTheresa Brandt

Why You Should Add Lake Como to Your Rhine River Cruise

Updated: Mar 20, 2023

The lovely village of Bellagio

What’s better than a river cruise along the Rhine? Extending your vacation to include Italy - in particular, the showstopping Lake Como. If you’re already planning to travel internationally, why not make the most of your time and extend your castle-centric and Alps-amazing river cruise through France, Germany, the Netherlands and Switzerland to include the beautiful Lake Como region? Here’s why it’s a must.

See What It’s Like to Live as a Celebrity

Whether you’re hoping to catch a glimpse of George Clooney or Madonna, or just dying to see the lake of which poet Percy Bysshe Shelley once said, “... exceeds anything I ever held in beauty,” Lake Como is an Italian jewel that really shouldn’t be missed if you’re anywhere close to it. (There’s a reason the James Bond, Star Wars and Ocean’s franchises have all filmed here!)

See why the rich and famous have been so drawn to the lake’s natural beauty for decades as you tour its surrounding villages, each with a distinctive personality and brimming with magnificent villas (while you may not be able to enter the villas, you can typically explore their Italian Renaissance-style gardens, which are equally as splendid).

Sail on the Gorgeous Lake

Sure, you can get to each of the villages around the lake by car, but it’s so much more romantic and memorable to get around on the water. Hop on one of the many ferries that ply the waters of the lake daily, hopping off to visit the walled city of Como, savor a candlelit meal in Bellagio, take a walk along the lakeside promenade in Menaggio, or take the funicular up to Brunate for a postcard-perfect panoramic view.

Bellissimo, Bellagio

Perhaps the most famous of Lake Como towns, Bellagio - or the “Pearl of Lake Como” - sits at the meeting point of three of the lake’s branches. Wander along its cobblestone streets, lined with colorful, flower-bedecked buildings, where every turn in the lane presents another perfect photo opp. Go shopping, stroll through 200-year-old gardens at Villa Melzi, sip a glass of wine at the peninsula's tip where Lake Como splits into two. A private guided tour can easily be arranged to help you make the most of a day here.

Go Back in Time

While you’re drinking in the picturesque views, you can also get a feel for what the Lake Como area was like in the 15th century. Around 1400, the Duke of Milan ordered that mulberry trees be planted around the lake, which made for a lavish feast for silkworms. By the early 1970s, the Como area was producing more silk than China or Japan. Shop for silk scarves, ties and other items in many of the lakeside villages, including pieces from the world-renowned silk brand Frey (they have shops in Bellagio and Cernobbio).

Feel some movie star magic, learn about your Italian heritage or simply soak up the natural beauty of Lake Como on a pre- or post-Rhine River cruise. Let’s chat about how to add this most magical region of Italy as part of your trip, including a hotel stay, included meals, transfers from your ship to your hotel, guided tours and more.

Reach out by booking a consultation through my Services page!


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