Lake Maggiore or Lake Como

Sep 19th, 2002, 10:49 AM
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Lake Maggiore or Lake Como

Narrowing things down here a bit. Will stay a few days in Venice and then move on to either Lake Maggiore or Lake Como. Is a car necessary? I've researched both Lake areas and both look great, and I'm overwhelmed with information. Which lake offers more in terms of sightseeing around the area, and reasonably priced hotels and restaurants?
Sep 20th, 2002, 02:07 AM
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Have spent time at both lakes and prefer Lake Como. A car would allow you to get away from Como itself and head out to Bellagio, the road is a bit scary but worth the trip. Have stayed several times at Hotel Miralago, good price and spotlessly clean. A boat trip from Bellagio down to Como and return is a restful way to see the stunning scenery. Lake Maggiore is okay if you like lots of camping grounds!
Sep 20th, 2002, 02:11 AM
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You don't need a car around Lake Como unless you just want one. Bellagio is IMO the best place to stay around Como. You can easily take boats from there to Varenna, Menaggio and the town of Como. It's really pretty there but I haven't been to Maggiore so can't compare them.
Sep 20th, 2002, 05:46 AM
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I totally with Paige's comments. We had a car during our stay in Bellagio but never used it. However, it obviously comes in handy for getting to the airport more easily with luggage.
Sep 20th, 2002, 09:59 AM
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Thanks, we pack very lightly so it appears a car is out. Leaning to Lake Como at this point.
Sep 20th, 2002, 11:57 AM
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Don, Have done both several times and it really does depend on what you want.
For first time experience, and without a car, I too would lean toward Como. The best connection from Milan will be to Varenna, which is a great place to base yourself. The Albergo Milano there is hard to beat. Bellagio is nice, but harder to access if going by train. Good luck--you cannot go wrong.
Sep 20th, 2002, 12:09 PM
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If you have chosen Lake Como then the next decision is which town along the lake. We stayed in Bellagio, drove to Como and took the ferry north from Bellagio which stopped at towns along the way. My opinion is to choose one of the towns along the lake and stay away from Como itself. Too much like a city. Bob's suggestion on Varenna looks good, Bellagio was nice but all are accessible by ferry so you can visit the ones you choose. One final note, we have been to Stresa on Lake Maggiore and much prefer Lake Como. Good luck!
Sep 27th, 2002, 05:01 PM
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My vote is for Varenna on Lake Como. It was so quiet, quaint and so romantic. Just what we were looking for. If you are looking to stay somewhere that has more hotels and more shopping, then Bellagio is the place to be. We liked the shopping there otherwise, we thought it was a little stuffy.
Sep 28th, 2002, 02:22 PM
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Don, We did exactly what you asked about. We took the train from Venice to Como via Milan. Como is only around 30 minutes from Milan. From the train station, if you take the IC train, you will need to take a taxi to the boat to whatever town you choose to stay in. We stayed in Bellagio at the Hotel du Lac. Very functional, clean, comfortable, great dining room and lake views. Any number of restaurants specially if you go to the different towns on the lake.

We did not miss having a car.
Oct 1st, 2002, 09:29 AM
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I also appreciate the comments. Any recomendations for a hotel in Varenna? Must have a balcony with a great view!
Oct 1st, 2002, 10:42 AM
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My recommendation for a hotel in Varenna is either the Albergo Milano or Eremo Gaudio. Albergo Milano ask for room 5 or 6, small balcony and great view or rm 1 or 2, just below 5 & 6, with a huge terrace but view isn't as great. Eremo Gaudio is about a 15 min walk from Varenna, up a small hill. Views are absolutely stunning of Varenna and Lake Como if you get a room with a balcony.
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