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Visiting villas and gardens around Lake Como

Visiting villas and gardens around Lake Como

Apr 28th, 2008, 10:57 AM
  #41  
 
Join Date: May 2006
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Dina,

Regarding the boat(s) to Lenno - In past summers, the Lake Como Boat Authority has had a separate passenger (no cars) boat service in the Mid-lake area. Those boats are on a different part of the published boat schedules (they may not be on the website or they may be summer only). This would give a few more options to get to Lenno.

There is no reason that you cannot try for Balbianello, but Carlotta or the gardens at Monastero/ Cipressi would be fine as well.

Just tio give you a few more options, the lakefront promenade is generously wide and runs from Lenno/Balbianello, past Villa Carlotta and Tremezzo, all the way to Cadenabbia. So a boat to any of those stops might make it possible for you to get to Balabianello. Cadenabbia is a ferry landing.
Big_Red is offline  
Apr 28th, 2008, 05:06 PM
  #42  
 
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ok, that's great advice.

Unfortunately, we can't leave Milan too early. We have a 10am reservation to see the Last Supper, and then plan to catch the train to Varenna.

My goal was to stop first in Bellagio, have lunch, shop and stroll around.

Then we could have time at about 2:30 or 3 to take another boat ride and visit a garden.

We'd want to get on the 6:30 train back to Milan.

Is the Villa more impressive than the gardens at Balbianello? Do you have to do a guided tour, or can you walk around by yourself?

thanks,
dina
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Apr 28th, 2008, 05:28 PM
  #43  
 
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Dina,

I have a boat schedule from Summer 2007. There was a 3:00pm boat leaving Bellagio (arrives in Lenno at 3:30pm). This is a 'batello navetta in centro lago' boat. There was a 'fast service' boat leaving Bellagio at 2:30 and a second appx an hour later. This takes fifteen minutes to get to Lenno.

If you want the English language tour of Balabianello, those are given a few times each day.

It would be possible to take the Milan Metro Area commuter rail to Como and then take a boat to Lenno, but I don't know if that would help you. The boat ride would be one to two hours each way.
Big_Red is offline  
Apr 28th, 2008, 05:48 PM
  #44  
 
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Dina,

Even tho' you will only have six hours on Lake Como, I recommend that that you try and ride the boats on the lake. More than the few minutes fifteen minute hops that you are contemplating. There are boats Lenno to Como, leaving Lenno at: 5:00 and 5:20, takes 1 hour and 40 minutes.
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Apr 28th, 2008, 05:54 PM
  #45  
 
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Regarding the interior vs. the exterior and gardens of Balbianello - the first time we went, as I think I mentioned, we walked from the boat at Lenno, and found the house was unexpectedly closed. They were setting up a wedding or something, which happens a lot there. So I felt I HAD to go back, which is why we took the organized tour to be sure of seeing the interior. But the interior, while interesting is really nothing all that special or grand (it's comfortable and I could be happy living in it). The REAL deal is the incredible setting, the grounds (not really formal gardens, just the whole setting) and the architecture of the buildings themselves. And no you can't go inside the house except as part of a scheduled tour.
NeoPatrick is online now  
Apr 28th, 2008, 07:40 PM
  #46  
 
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<<Even tho' you will only have six hours on Lake Como, I recommend that that you try and ride the boats on the lake.>>

Big Red,

Great idea, I'm sure, but I'm worried my teens would get bored with a 1 - 2 hr slow boat ride. What they probably really would like would be to rent our own boat to speed around in, but I imagine that would be an activity that would be out of our price range...

Thanks for the 2007 timetable. It gives me an idea of what to expect.

NeoPatrick, thanks, too, for the explanation of the villa/garden. It makes a lot of sense the way you explained it.

you guys are amazing...

dina

dina4 is offline  
Apr 29th, 2008, 07:51 PM
  #47  
 
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Dina,

Your are right to consider the attention span of your teens but maybe you underestimate the sheer awe of Lake Como. Also, those boats have lots of room to walk around in. My son has surprised and pleased me at what he finds special when we travel.

This might work, there is a 'fast boat' that leaves Lenno at 6:30pm makes Como 30 minutes later. This is either a catamaran, a hydrofoil, or the Orione. The Orione is very good but we only rode it once.

The boat ride to Como might not take much more time than the Varenna train route , but you have to research that. Otherwise, I would minimize the wait queing for a villa tour and spent more time on the lake.

Enjoy your trip.

Big_Red is offline  
Apr 29th, 2008, 09:32 PM
  #48  
 
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Big Red,

Thanks for the good advice. I think you're right. They'd probably rather spend time on a boat then waiting in line for a garden!

If we take that fast boat to Como, we'll get to see a lot of the lake's beauty. Then I suppose we can take the train back to Milan from Como.

Is it easy to get to the train station from the ferry dock? Would we just take a cab?

I suppose when we arrive in Varenna, we can pick up a boat schedule at the train station and map out our plan over lunch...

Thanks again!
dina
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Apr 30th, 2008, 09:45 AM
  #49  
 
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From the docks in Como, the train station is to east. Supposedly very close. There are two train stations in Como, so don't get the wrong one.

Pick up a boat schedule from the ticket office by the lake. Walk down hill from the train station to the main road, Left to go over the esinio river,right turn to go to the lake. The boat ticket window is in the small building in front of the Albergoi Olivedo. There is a nice little lake-front walkway from there along Varenna's lakefront.
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Apr 30th, 2008, 10:33 AM
  #50  
 
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Thanks, Big Red. You've been a tremendous help.

And, thanks to hlocke -- for posting this thread in the first place!!

dina
dina4 is offline  
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