Lake Como

Bellagio Sightseeing Tour (Part 2)

Lake Como ABC

Bellagio Sightseeing Tour (Part 2) zoom on map

2nd stage: from the Museum of Nautical Instruments to Loppia and back to the starting point in Bellagio. (approx. 2 hours for the 1st and 2nd stage)

At the end of the driveway in the district S. Giovanni is an old tower building with a sundial on the left, which houses the Museum of Nautical Instruments (6) . The museum has recently opened thanks to the passionate collector and travel buddy Gianni Gini. Over two hundred valuable objects are exhibited here, which in the past made it possible for people to orientate themselves at sea and to explore new worlds by ship. Among the most interesting items in this collection are telescopes from the 18th century Venetian manufacture, compasses, sundials from different eras, a number of sea chronometers and a wonderful brass & not; planetarium. The museum is open in the summer from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. and from 4.30 p.m. to 7.30 p.m. or by appointment. Admission payable. Info: Tel. 031.950309 . (Duration of the visit to the museum for nautical instruments: approx. 30/60 minutes)

A cobblestoned river leads through down the heart of S. Giovanni to the lake (7) . On the right is the church of the same name, once the meeting point of the religious life of Bellagio. Little is known of the history of the building itself, other than that it was certainly the first church built on Bellagio grounds. It is known that it already existed in the 10th century, but no trace remains as a witness of this period; It is believed that today's oratory south of the parish was built on the foundations of the old building. The new archpriesthood building S. Giovanni Battista was built in 1584 and partly in 1685. The current aspect is due to the changes made in the 18th century. Next to the facade, which is in the Baroque style, is the bell tower with five bells that sound a wonderful concert in antique C (falling). Inside you can still see an altar wing with a painting by Gaudenzio Ferrari (16th century), "Cristo risorto fra santi e donatori" and a virgin from the Bernini school. The church is only open for services on Sunday mornings at 10 a.m. The artificial grotto in the square is dedicated to the Madonna of Lourdes and was built in the 1950s by the Archpriest of S. Giovanni, Don Giulio Botta.
In the harbor basin in front of the church, the typical boats of Lake Corner are often anchored, whose name "Lucia" can be traced back to the main character of Alessandro Manzoni's masterpiece "The Fiancés" in the Corner area. Three tires are mounted on the boats, which allow a cover to protect against bad weather or hot sun.
The modern pink building on the left bank of the lake is the rowing school, which can boast about 6 world champions to this day. All young people who are interested in this sport meet here.

Now it goes over the same road back to Guggiate and halfway up the climb, the first road on the left leads to the fraction Loppia , where on the right we find the stairs that lead to the Vialone of Villa Giulia. Beyond the wall, the Romanesque church of St. Maria von Loppia (end of the 10th century) can be seen (8 ), which once had a cloister, which unfortunately during the complex des Vialone was destroyed; Today the building is owned by the GerIi family, whose splendid villa can be seen at the bottom left of the lake (9) . The villa was built in the second half of the XVlIl. Built in the 19th century by the Taverna family to later pass to the Poldi Pezzoli family, who commissioned the architect Giuseppe BalzareUo to add two wings to them. After that it fell to Prince Trivulzio under inheritance law and in 1941 it was bought by Count Gerli, who took particular care of the restoration of the Church of St. Maria von Loppia.

In the harbor basin of Loppia two rare examples of the Corner gondolas can be seen; these are large boats with sails that lasted until the end of the 19th century. Used for the transport of goods and animals. This district was once a fishing village and the atmosphere from that time can still be clearly felt here today. From Loppia, it is advisable to take the return path to the center through the romantic garden of Villa Melzi (10) . The villa was built by Francesco Melzi D'Eril, Vice-President of the Cisalpine Republic; the villa is still privately owned by the descendants of this famous family. The garden is mostly known for its azaleas & not; and rhododendron flowers in spring. The payable admission ticket is valid all day and allows you to visit the neoclassical family chapel and the small museum.

If you don't want to go back through the garden, the first ascending one leads sloping paved road back to the lake promenade at the main entrance of Villa Melzi. From here you can walk along the Lungo Lario Europa to the center of Bellagio in a few minutes.

Places to stop for a refreshing break:

Pescallo: Hotel Restaurant "La Pergola" 031.950263
Loppia: Hotel Restaurant Si/vio 031.950322 Restaurant Bar Alle Darsene di Loppia 031.952069
San Giovanni: Restaurant Bar Mella 031.950205

REGION: Lake Como excursion tips, middle of the lake (Centro Lago)/sights

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