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DAY TRIPS FROM MILAN to Lake Como

Are you planning to visit Milan ? Take a day trip to Lake Como !

Below is a selection of the best Lake Como tours from Milan , that will show you the popular must-sees of the area.

Como  and Bellagio  are definitely among the most preferred destinations for guided tours , but if you are curious to see Switzerland too, then don’t miss the chance to head to St. Moritz and take a ride on the Bernina Red Train .

Discover the best Lake Como tours from Milan!

From Milan: Como, Bellagio & 1-hour private boat tour

Group experience

Como, Italy: Piazza San Fedele and its church

Up to 10 ppl

Take a break from Milan and experience a full-day trip to Como and Bellagio , also enjoying a private one-hour cruise on Lake Como.

  • Visit the Como town center and Villa Olmo , a neoclassical building surrounded by amazing gardens
  • Take a 1-hour cruise aboard a private boat and enjoy the spectacular views
  • Visit Bellagio , the Pearl of Lake Como, and explore the town at your own pace

Tour provided by GetYourGuide . Click here to see cancellation policy and other information.

Lake Como with St. Moritz & Bernina Red Train day trip

Lake Como, St. Moritz and Bernina Red Train day trip

€175/person

If you are planning to visit Milan and love  extraordinary landscapes , this tour is for you. Get ready to spend the day on a scenic trip to  Lake Como and St. Moritz .

  • Take a 1 hour private morning cruise on the calm waters of Lake Como
  • Walk in St. Moritz  town center
  • Board the Bernina Red Train  and take a breathtaking 2.5 hour ride

Lake Como with Bellagio & Lugano day trip from Milan

Como, Italy: Piazza Duomo

€128/person

Lake Como or Lake Lugano… why choose? With this  full-day trip  from Milan you will have the opportunity to visit  Lugano city  (Switzerland),  Como  and the world-popular  Bellagio .

  • Stroll along the promenade of Lake Lugano and take home some quality chocolate and other specialty items
  • Visit Bellagio , take a lot of pictures and eat some excellent local food!
  • Take a cruise on Lake Como  and visit Como city

From Milan: small group tour to Lake Como with a private driver

Private experience

Cernobbio, Lake Como, Italy

From €340/p

Up to 6 ppl

A small guided group tour to Lake Como from Milan . It includes private luxury transfer and lunch with a lake view and a visit to one of the most beautiful villas, Villa Olmo .

  • Visit Cernobbio on Lake Como and learn about its extensive history
  • Enjoy lunch in a beautiful restaurant with a view of Lake Como
  • Discover Como city and its historic center and learn interesting facts from your guide
  • Take a leisure walk to Villa Olmo from Como and explore its beautiful gardens

Como, Bellagio and Lake Como cruise: full-day trip from Milan

Piazza Volta of Como

€110/person

A guided day trip to the charming cities of Como and Bellagio . This trip also includes a ferry cruise on the lake and a visit to the sanctuary of Madonna del Ghisallo .

  • Take a guided walking tour of Como’s scenic town centre and learn about its history and landscape
  • From Como, take a ferry cruise on the lake to Bellagio and enjoy some free time at leisure
  • Visit the Sanctuary of Madonna del Ghisallo , the patron saint of cyclists and enjoy the panoramic view 

From Milan: Como, Lugano and Bellagio + exclusive boat cruise

Group or private experience

Lugano lake promenade

From €135/p

A day trip from Milan to some of the most beautiful locations  in Switzerland and Italy . This trip also includes an exclusive boat cruise on Lake Como .

  • Discover Lugano and its city center and sample some amazing Swiss chocolate
  • Cruise on an exclusive private boat to Bellagio and see Lake Como from a different perspective
  • Explore Bellagio with a guided tour and also enjoy some free time for some shopping
  • Take a guided walking tour of Como city and discover its history

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8 Best Lake Como Tours From Milan (Private, Small-Group & More)

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Home » 8 Best Lake Como Tours From Milan (Private, Small-Group & More)

Lake Como, in the foothills of the Italian Alps in northern Italy, is a destination that has been capturing the hearts of travelers for years.

Here we’ll highlight the 8 best Lake Como tours from Milan, all with an English-speaking guide. 

The lake’s beautiful scenery, picturesque small towns, and elegant villas make it an idyllic spot to visit.

Tour to Lake Como from Milan to see Varenna Town

🏆 BEST TOUR FROM MILAN TO LAKE COMO

Don’t have time to read the whole article? The most popular tour with a rating of 4.6/5 and over 3700 reviews is the: Lake Como, Bellagio, and Varenna from Milan Tour .

Whether you’re interested in exploring the lake’s historic sites, doing a little shopping, or indulging in the famous cuisine, there is a perfect Lake Como day tour from Milan for you.

Quick Guide: Best Milan To Lake Como Tours

After a quick list of the top 3 Milan to Lake Como tours? Here are the best tours.

Lake Como, Bellagio, and Varenna Day Tour From Milan

  • See the three best towns
  • Includes a private boat cruise and a walking tour of Como
  • It has a 4.6/5 star rating from over 3700 travelers

Day trip from Milan to Lake Como to see the beautiful streets in Bellagio

Lake Como & Switzerland Day Tour From Milan

  • Visit Bellagio (Lake Como) & Lugano (Switzerland)
  • Includes a cruise on Lake Como
  • Free time in Bellagio and Lugano
  • This tour has received a badge of excellence from Viator

Brunate and Como private tour from Milan

Private Tour of Lake Como from Milan

  • Enjoy your private transfer, private boat cruise, and private walking tour.
  • See views over Como from Brunate
  • Watch the sunset over the lake

Best Lake Como Tours from Milan

The following Milan Lake Como tours each offers an unforgettable way to experience the beauty of the Lake Como region.

Whatever sort of experience you’re after, there’s something for you on this list of the most popular Lake Como from Milan tours.

1. Lake Como, Bellagio, and Varenna Day Tour with Boat Cruise      

Lake como tour to Varenna from Milan

Tour Overview

  • Tour Type: Travel by luxury bus from Milan, enjoy a guided walking tour, and a private boat tour of the lake. Free time at various stops.
  • Tour Sights & Stops : Como, Villa Olmo, Bellagio, Varenna, Lake Como
  • Departure Points: Milan Central Station or Milan Piazza Della Scala/ Piazza Duomo
  • Length: 10 to 11 hours
  • Check Price

Enjoy a full-day trip with walking tours of Como, and the Villa Olmo and its gardens with your guide.

Headphones will be provided – the best way to ensure that you’ll hear everything your guide says.

Then embark on a lake cruise by private boat, and explore Lake Como’s three branches.

Visit Bellagio and Varenna, spending your free time there shopping along cobblestoned streets and basking in the local ambiance.

Marina and Massimo were a pair sent from heaven, absolutely fantastic entertainment, facts and banter throughout the entire tour. LOADS of freedom to explore and see different things … Sights were astounding and plenty of them, highly highly recommend! Jordan (Get Your Guide reviews )  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Important to note is that this tour does not include meals, so make sure you are happy to take food with you or to spend additional money at a restaurant.

Also, prepare yourself for a very long day, the tour is 10-11 hours which makes for a pretty big day out.

Who This Tour Is For: 

  • Couples who’d love a romantic day together while someone else does the driving.
  • Small groups who want a full-day outing in the Lake Como area.
  • Anyone who wants to explore Lake Como and its surrounding beauty.

This is the most popular tour so it is important to pre-book your tickets or you risk the chance of missing out. The tour is rated 4.6/5 from over 3700 travelers.

If you wish to tour Lake Como from Milan, then this is our top pick for you.

2. Lake Como and Bellagio Day Trip with Boat Cruise

Things to do in Bellagio Lake Como

  • Tour Type: Air-conditioned coach, a guided walking tour of Como. A boat cruise on Lake Como plus a funicular ride in winter.
  • Tour Sights & Stops : Como plus Bellagio and Cadenabbia in summer, Brunate in winter.
  • Departure Point: Milan Visitors Centre
  • Length: 9 hours

Explore Como, enjoy local cuisine, and browse shops and markets. This tour is tailored to the season in which you are traveling.

This ensures that you’ll make the most of your time in Como any time of year. 

Whether you’re gazing down at the lake from Brunate or wandering next to it in Bellagio, you’ll fall in love with Italy.

This tour promises unforgettable adventures.

We had a wonderful time! Our guide was so knowledgeable- he gave us so many facts about the history and geography of the area. We would do this again and would recommend it to anyone who is interested in exploring the area for a day… Jessica_W (Get Your Guide reviews )  ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Important to note: Whilst the tour above makes use of a private boat for the cruise portion of their trip, this particular tour uses the ferry boat which can get busy.

Another comparison point is that the tour mentioned above accommodates small groups where this tour will take groups of up to around 50 people.

  • Families enjoying a holiday together
  • Couples staying in Milan looking to escape the busy city for a day
  • Travelers who’d love to see where the rich and famous winter

This tour has received a badge of excellence on Viator. It is rated 4.5/5 from reviews from over 1700 travelers who have experienced this tour.

I love that this tour is slightly shorter than the tour before, however, I truly love Varenna so I think it is a shame that you will miss out on it on this tour.

3. Italy and Switzerland Day Trip: Lake Como, Bellagio & Lugano from Milan

A view of a popular street in Bellagio that you can visit on a tour from Milan to Lake Como

  • Tour Type: Travel by air-conditioned coach and by boat. Guided tour of the lake and free time at the various stops.
  • Tour Sights & Stops : Cruise Lake Como, see celebrity villas from the water Bellagio, plus the Swiss town of Lugano and the church of Santa Maria Degli Angioli.
  • Departure Point: Stazione Porta Garibaldi
  • Length: 10.5 hours

This is a spectacular day trip combining the best of Switzerland and Italy. Explore the towns of Lugano and Como, renowned for their natural beauty.

Learn about the famous properties from your guide, who will point out villa Balbianello used to film Star Wars and James Bond movies.

Discover Bellagio, with free time to explore its charming streets and hidden corners.

Also, visit the Italian-speaking Swiss town of Lugano. Soak up the local culture and admire the beautiful architecture.

Tour guide was excellent, knowledgeable, warm and friendly. It was a great experience! … it was such a non stressful experience. It was my birthday trip and I loved it !!!” Hagar_M, November 2022 (Viator Reviews ) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Important to note: If you prefer small group tours, this is not the tour for you as it is normal for them to have groups of up to around 60 people.

Also, be aware the cruise is via the ferry – it is not on a private boat (which the first tour mentioned is).

Also, ensure you are okay to cross the Swiss border (some might need a visa).

  • Solo travelers who love to learn about their location from a local guide
  • Groups of friends traveling in Milan, eager to explore a bit farther afield
  • Couples on a second honeymoon who want to see the best of the area

If you would love to experience a bit of Switzerland, then this is the tour for you.

This tour is popular and has received a badge of excellence from Viator.

We highly recommend you pre-book this great tour to avoid disappointment.

4. Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano Coach Day Trip

Lake Como from Bellagio

  • Tour Type: private air-conditioned coach to Lugano and Bellagio with a cruise on Lake Como.
  • Tour Sights & Stops : Lugano and Chiesa di Santa Maria di Loreto Church, Bellagio and  Lake Como.
  • Departure Point: Milan Porta Garibaldi Train Station main entrance

Experience Italy and Switzerland on this day trip from Milan. Marvel at the snow-capped mountains and spectacular scenery along Lake Como.

Visit the Swiss town of Lugano as well as Bellagio, known as “The Pearl of Lake Como”. 

You’ll have free time to spend as you’d like, souvenir shopping or sampling the local food.

On the lake cruise, learn which villa served as James Bond and Star Wars movie sets, plus view George Clooney’s Italian lakeside home.

Our guide Valentino was very insightful. Thoroughly enjoyed this trip! There was sufficient time to walk around Lugano, Bellagio and Como. She even gave us recommendations to dine at!! (The food places she recommended were all really good!!!!). She was very funny and it made this trip really enjoyable. Samantha – Singapore (Get Your Guide Reviews ) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
  • Solo travelers who want to make the most of their time in Milan with a day tour
  • Family groups who’d love to learn about this stunning area from a local tour guide
  • Honeymoon couples who want to put themselves in the hands of a trusted tour company for a relaxing day outside of the busy city.

The tour is popular and has received a rating of 4.7/5 from over 600 travelers.

If you want to see both Lake Como and Lugano then this would be a great option for you.

5. Small Group Tour of the Towns of Varenna, Bellagio, and Tremezzo

Lake Como Day Trip from Milan to See Varenna

  • Tour Type: Small Group, train travel to Varenna, with a lake cruise to the towns of Bellagio and Tremezzo.
  • Tour Sights & Stops : Verena, Lake Como boat cruise to Bellagio, Tremezzo, and Villa Carlotta, with its gardens and museum.
  • Departure Point: Inside Milano Centrale Train Station Length: 9 hours

Take a journey by train to the charming village of Varenna on Lake Como. From there, cruise to Bellagio, then on to Tremezzo. 

There you’ll get to explore Villa Carlotta and its breathtaking gardens and museum. This tour offers a unique perspective of the beautiful Lake Como.

Wonderful day visiting Varenna, Bellagio and Villa Carlotta. Renzo was an excellent guide and knew so much history about the area. The views alone are worth it! … Overall an excellent tour and would recommend it to anyone!! Ian_H (Viator Reviews ) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
  • Anyone who prefers touring with just a small group
  • Those who love a European train ride
  • Fans of walking tours through enchanting Italian towns

This is the only tour on our list that actually includes a stop at Tremezzo. So you will see three gorgeous towns in one day with plenty of time to explore each at a leisurely pace.

We love that it is for a small group which makes the tour more personal too.

6. Half-Day Lake Como Discovery Tour from Milan

Cathedral of Como

  • Tour Type: Small group tour, train ride to Como, with a guided walking tour, plus a return train ticket that allows you to return to Milan at your leisure.
  • Tour Sights & Stops : Como and the Cathedral of Como, the Basilica di Sant’Abbondio, and Romanesque Sant’ Abbondio Church. Stops also at Como shops and boutiques.
  • Departure Point: Inside Milan’s Cadorna Station
  • Length: 5 hours

Experience the history and charm of Como on a walking tour led by a local guide. The tour takes you to the Cathedral of Como and the elegant Via Vittorio Emanuele. 

Explore the ancient Romanesque Sant’ Abbondio Church and walk along the lakeside promenade to Villa Olmo. Enjoy the panoramic views of Lake Como. 

This tour was absolutely amazing and a must do if you want a quick and knowledgeable trip of Lake Como. The tour guide was excellent and funny. He recommended amazing places and activities to do after the tour … Sohely_V (Viator Reviews ) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Important to note: This tour takes you to the city of Como. If you wish to see some of the cute towns around Lake Como, you can see them at your own leisure after the tour of Como Town ends.

  • Folks who love small group tours
  • Anyone who prefers a shorter trip, and would enjoy being able to return to Milan at the time of their choosing
  • All train travel enthusiasts

This is a fantastic option for those who don’t handle full-day tours as well. It is also great for those who prefer free time at destinations.

It is the perfect combination of a guided tour plus independent travel.

7. Lake Como at Sunset with Boat and Walking Tour

Brunate at Sunset with views over Como

  • Tour Type: An air-conditioned coach tour, a private boat cruise, a guided walking tour, and a ride on a funicular.
  • Tour Sights & Stops : Como, with Como Cathedral, Brunate, and Lake Como cruise.
  • Departure Point : Bus stop in Milan via Alessandro Manzoni or Central Railway Station in Piazza IV Novembre.
  • Length: 4 – 7 hours, depending on departure point

Explore the history and architecture of Como on a guided walking tour. For spectacular views, purchase a ticket for the funicular ride to charming Brunate.

Glide across Lake Como on a private boat tour and end your day with a spectacular sunset over the water.

An excellent way to spend the evening. Tour guide was very friendly. Get Your Guide Traveller (Get Your Guide Reviews ) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️
  • Couples who love a romantic sunset over the beautiful Italian Lake Como
  • Anyone who prefers an afternoon tour over a morning
  • Those curious to ride Brunate’s funicular railway

This tour is a great option for those who wish to experience these towns at golden sunset hour.

It is also a great way to avoid crowds as you will arrive after most travelers have completed their day trips.

8. Private Lake Como Tour, Private Car, and Private Boat

Como-city-Lake-Como

  • Tour Type: A private tour from Milan to Lake Como, with just your own party and a private driver.
  • Tour Sights & Stops : Como, Lake Como, and Brunate
  • Departure Point: Milan Central Station or Milan Duomo
  • Length: 4-7 hours

With an air-conditioned coach, you’ll gain access to this tranquil destination with ease. Admire the stunning Gothic architecture of Como Cathedral as you take a guided walking tour around the town.

The waterfront promenade will provide a perfect route for a gentle stroll and the chance to take in some of its breathtaking views.

Don’t miss the opportunity to explore Brunate, as you board the funicular up the hillside.

You’ll be able to admire Lake Como from above and capture any number of stunning photos on your camera.

Glide over the lake’s waters on a private guided tour and marvel at the lavish beautiful villas located along its banks.

Before returning to your meeting point in Milan, make sure you witness the spectacular sunset from the lake’s edge – an experience you won’t soon forget!

Fantastic trip! This was a great way to get up to lake como from Milan. It was hitting the easy button. They took care of the driver, the boat ride, lunch reservations, it was great. The highlight of my trip. Matthew_S (Viator Reviews ) ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

Important to note: the tour expenses do not cover the costs of the ticket for the funicular up to Brunate.

It also doesn’t include time to explore any of the other towns around the lake – although perhaps you could arrange for that at an additional cost?

  • Couples who’d rather not share this romantic experience with a group
  • Small groups who want to enjoy each other’s company without a crowd   
  • Families with children who relish their time together

If you hate crowds and you have the cash to spend for a private experience then this is a fantastic choice.

Tours To Lake Como From Milan FAQs

Find below the answers to some of the most commonly asked questions.

There are several ways to get from Milan to Lake Como without a car. You can take a train from Milan Central Station to Como San Giovanni station, which is located near the southern end of Lake Como. The journey takes approximately 40-60 minutes. You can take a bus from Milan’s Lampugnano Bus Station to Como or other towns around the lake. The journey takes approximately 1-2 hours. And lastly, you can make life super easy and choose to opt for a tour from Milan to Lake.

bellagio lake como italy

Lake Como is located approximately 50 kilometers (31 miles) north of Milan.

The best time to visit Lake Como is during the spring and summer months (April to September), when the weather is warm and sunny. However, keep in mind that this is also the peak tourist season, so expect larger crowds and higher prices.

It is recommended to book a tour in advance, especially during peak tourist season, to ensure availability and avoid disappointment.

Summary Of The Best Tours From Milan To Lake Como

I hope this list made it easier for you to choose your perfect Lake Como day trip.

Whether you’re traveling with culture aficionados, devoted foodies, or celebrity watchers, there are a few Lake Como day tours just for you.

BEST TOUR FROM MILAN TO LAKE COMO

Don’t have time to read the whole article? The most popular tour with a rating of 4.6/5 and over 3700 reviews is this Lake Como, Bellagio, and Varenna from Milan Tour .

No matter what type of Lake Como tour you choose, it is sure to be a memorable experience.

From the stunning views and historic sites to delicious food and amazing boat cruises, there are so many things to enjoy in this beautiful region of Italy.

With these 8 best Lake Como tours from Milan, you can explore all that this incredible destination has to offer with an English-speaking guide who knows the area inside and out.

Whether you’re looking for a private or group tour, each one will provide unique experiences that will make your trip unforgettable!

So start planning your dream vacation today – get ready for some fun on Lake Como!

Before you go, make sure to check out whether luxury hotels in Lake Como and restaurants will be open during your tour. Here is a great post about the best time to go to Lake Como .

If you’re visiting Milan, don’t make the mistake of thinking you have to stay in the city! Take advantage of the many relaxing day trips from Milan available to you.

If you are sticking around Milan and want to taste some local traditional Milanese dishes, then you might want to go on one of our recommended food tours in Milan .

And lastly, if you are unsure about whether a tour is for you, you do also have the option to rent a car. Renting a car in Como is easy and affordable and will allow you to explore destinations close to Como as well.

And for those who opt for staying for a few nights, I highly recommend you book a boat tour of Lake Como .

Find all our helpful posts on many countries, cities, and destinations in Italy on our Italy trip blog .

Lake Como Tours from Milan

Jolene Ejmont

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Italy & Switzerland in 1 day: Lake Como, Bellagio & Lugano Day Trip from Milan

Explore the wonders of Switzerland and Italy on a day excursion to Lugano and Lake Como from Milan. Follow a knowledgeable local guide as you cruise Lake Como on a private sightseeing boat, capturing glimpses of celebrity villas along the shoreline. Pause in Bellagio, for a stroll through its charming streets.

Crossing into Switzerland to discover Lugano, a picturesque town where free time awaits to marvel at lakeside views or indulge in some Swiss chocolate shopping. Immerse yourself in the unique charm of the town before heading back to Milan on our comfortable air-conditioned coach.

  • Start the day with a  boat trip on Lake Como . Let your expert English-speaking guide points out the famous villas where Star Wars and James Bond movies have been filmed as well as the private villa of George Clooney .
  • At our second stop, Bellagio , known as “the pearl of Lake Como”.
  • Ending with a trip over the border into Switzerland where you will discover the incredible  lake town of Lugano.

Tour Description

What's included.

  • Expert, English-speaking guide for the whole day
  • 50 min. Como Lake cruise on a private boat
  • Audio headsets so you can always hear your guide
  • All transfers in an air-conditioned coach
  • Free time in Bellagio and Lugano
  • Food & Beverages
  • Hotel pick-up/drop-off

Sites Visited

  • Lake Lugano

Picture Perfect Lake Como

Embark on an extraordinary day trip from Milan to explore the beauty of both Switzerland and Italy, immersing yourself in the breathtaking landscapes of Lugano and Lake Como. Guided by a local expert, your journey begins with a scenic cruise on Lake Como aboard a private sightseeing boat. Keep your eyes peeled for the opulent villas that line the shores, once graced by celebrities.

Bellagio: The Pearl of Lake Como

Your adventure starts with a stop in the charming town of Bellagio, often referred to as the 'pearl of Lake Como.' Here, you have the opportunity to wander through the winding streets, discovering the medieval alleys and authentic shops that give Bellagio its unique character. Enjoy leisure time at your own pace, perhaps savoring a delightful lunch with the stunning lake as your backdrop.

Lakeside Lugano

As you cross the border into Switzerland, your next destination is Lugano. Delight in some free time to immerse yourself in the sights and sounds of this picturesque town. Whether you choose to appreciate the lakeside views or indulge in a bit of retail therapy by shopping for Swiss chocolate, Lugano offers a delightful blend of experiences.

Capture the essence of Lugano and Lake Como, creating lasting memories against the backdrop of these two European gems. As the day unfolds, absorb the beauty of Lugano, enjoy the allure of Bellagio, and cruise the pristine waters of Lake Como. Your return journey to Milan concludes this unforgettable day trip, leaving you with a treasure trove of experiences from the heart of Switzerland and Italy.

Thousands of 5-Star Reviews

Tripadvisor, know before you go, meeting point.

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Important Notes

  • Most guests will not be required to have a Visa to enter Switzerland; a passport will be enough to enter the Country. Please check this website for more information, and to determine if you may need a Visa (choose your country by selecting the first letter i.e “U” for United States.

Cancelation Policy

This tour is subject to a 24-hour cancelation policy. If you wish to cancel or amend your booking, you can do so without charge by contacting us up to 24 hours in advance of your expected departure time.

All customers are required to carry their passport/travel document with them on this tour. In addition, it is customer’s responsibility to ensure they have the correct Visa to enter Switzerland.

Customers holding passports from a non EU country will need a Schengen Visa which they can obtain on entry to an EU country. Without the correct Visa customers will not be allowed to enter Switzerland and City Wonders will accept no responsibility for any customer who is refused entry at the border due to having an incorrect or no Visa.

Please refer to the following website for up to date information about Visa requirements for Switzerland; https://www.ch.ch/en/foreign-nationals-in-switzerland/entry-and-stay-in-switzerland/visas-for-foreign-nationals/  

Our City Wonders guides will be holding a sign or a flag with the name City Wonders written on it at the meeting point.

You should expect to receive an email within minutes of booking with your confirmation voucher.

  • Book with Confidence: Free cancellations up to 24 hours before the experience begins (local time).
  • Multilingual Customer Service: Talk to us, we are here to help.
  • No Hidden Costs: All taxes and fees included.

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Milan tours, get to know city wonders.

A City Wonders tour is the product of meticulous research, detailed planning, and a passion for providing customers with travel experiences they will cherish forever.

With City Wonders it's not just facts, our passionate guides tell you the stories that bring the sights to life.

  • All of our guides are experts in their field
  • We only hire fluent English-speakers so nothing is ever lost in translation
  • We focus on the little details and anecdotes that make City Wonders so special

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About the tour

Lake Como day trip from Milan

The tour will begin with your private driver collecting you from your hotel in Milan (another custom location in the area can be agreed) with a luxury sedan or minivan. Discover the beauty of the most elegant and third-largest lake in Italy with its incredible Mediterranean and Alpine scenery, spectacular views and authentic villas.

Within an hour, you will reach Lake Como and continue driving along the panoramic lake road SS340 to reach your first tour site: Villa Balbianello. The property was lastly owned by the Italian explorer and philanthropist Guido Monzino, who donated the building and gardens to the FAI (National Trust of Italy). The Villa now hosts an extremely beautiful, rich and complete museum of Monzino’s expeditions and also includes many art masterpieces of his collection.

Your driver will then take you to Villa Carlotta, between the villages of Tremezzo and Cadenabbia. Visit the Villa’s museum and the colorful Italian botanical gardens that line the lake.

After that, together with you personal driver, you will proceed boarding on a car-ferry that in just 10 minutes will take you to the world-famous town of Bellagio.

The perfect place to enjoy some free time browsing around the local shops, having some genuine lunch, just in front of a stunning view of Lake Como. The village dates back to the 7th Century A.D., and it develops on a narrow peninsula surrounded by waters of Lake Como.

After Bellagio, the tour will conclude and your  private driver  will take you back to your hotel in Milan or other desired location.

Please note that Villa Balbianello is open to public every working-day, excluding Mondays and Wednesdays. In addition from October to March some of the villas may be closed.

Alternative tour:  Lake Como & Lugano day trip from Milan

  • DEPARTURE/RETURN LOCATION: Your hotel in Milan area (a different location may be agreed)
  • DEPARTURE TIME: suggested departure from 08:00am to 09:30am
  • DURATION: 8 hrs
  • INCLUDED: English speaking driver, Fully equipped Mercedes Benz vehicle, WI-FI on board, Car Ferry
  • NOT INCLUDED: Entrance fees to the Villas, Food and Drinks
  • LANGUAGES: English – Italian

You can customize your tour according to your needs and preferences, our staff would be happy to inform you about different options, alternative routes and sites.

*Please note that Villa Balbianello is open to public every working-day, excluding Mondays and Wednesdays. In addition from October to March some of the villas may be closed.

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lake como day tours from milan

Maddy's Avenue

By: Maddy Cornelius · Last Updated: December 30, 2023

The Perfect Day Trip to Lake Como from Milan (Self-Guided!)

Are you visiting Milan, but want to flee the busy city streets for day? Are the mountains, fresh air, and glistening waters of Lake Como calling your name? I get it. Because I felt the same! So I decided to plan out the perfect self-guided day trip from Milan to Lake Como .

View of Varenna, from the ferry, on Lake Como

From Milan , to Como (the lake’s namesake city), Bellagio, Varenna, and back, I packed in as much as I could into one day: charming villages and quaint cobblestone lanes; spectacular views , boat rides , beautiful gardens and villas; and of course, fresh pasta, gelato, and local wine .

If you want to take a self-guided day trip to Lake Como from Milan, you’ve come to the right place.

This article includes everything you need to know about taking a day trip to Lake Como from Milan – including trains and ferries, and the best things to do as you explore the quaint towns of Como, Bellagio, and Varenna.

Want a printable version of this itinerary? Get it here .

Want a printable PDF of this Lake Como Day Trip itinerary?

9 pages of itinerary, accommodation, and activity recommendations, must-know travel tips, and more!

lake como day tours from milan

Your Guide: How to Day Trip from Milan to Lake Como

While organized day trips are available to take you to Lake Como and back to Milan in a day, taking a self-guided day trip will be much more rewarding!

And it’s easy to do, too.

View of a luxurious villa on the shores of Lake Como

Which Towns to Visit

On a day trip to Lake Como from Milan, you’ll have time to explore a few of Lake Como’s villages. I recommend visiting:

  • Bellagio ; and

Each place is special and beautiful in its own way. Plus, they’re close enough to each other that you can comfortably see them all in one day without having to rush.

Here’s how…

View of the town of Varenna. This is one of the must-see towns on a day trip from Milan to Lake Como.

Your Roundtrip Route: Milan to Lake Como

Here’s the route you should take between Milan, Como, Bellagio, and Varenna:

  • Train: Milano Centrale train station to Como San Giovanni station
  • Ferry: Como to Bellagio
  • Ferry: Bellagio to Varenna
  • Train: Varenna-Esino train station to Milano Centrale train station

P.S. You can also embark on this route in reverse; Milan to Varenna and Como to Milan.

Maddy eating gelato on the shores of the ancient city of Como. Como is one of the must-see towns on a day trip from Milan to Lake Como.

Why This Route?

Why this route? And why these towns?

Como (the city)

Well, Como is the biggest town on the lake. This ancient city is ridiculously charming and walkable, and there’s plenty to do and see – from churches to piazzas.

I thought that Como was more authentic than some of the other villages. It’s absolutely steeped in history, since at least the Bronze Age (which occurred between 3300 BC and 1200 BC). Amazing , right?

Unlike many other villages that partially shut in the low season, Como welcomes you year-round ! (Perfect if you’re visiting in the winter.)

Plus, taking the scenic ferry from Como to Bellagio means you have 45 minutes to savor the incredibly picturesque backdrop of tiny, colorful villages and soaring mountains!

Bellagio & Varenna

Bellagio and Varenna are also non-negotiable stops.

They’re both endlessly enchanting, with gardens, famous villas, stunning shores, wine bars, lakefront restaurants, souvenir shops, quaint promenades, and more.

If you leave Milan first thing in the morning, follow this route, and catch the last train back to Milan – you will have plenty of time to experience all three towns.

Maddy standing on the shores of Lake Como

Alternative Day Trip Routes

Keep in mind, you can also take the train to/from Varenna-Esino train station, skipping Como completely . (I wouldn’t recommend this, but it’s an option!)

In that case, you could simply spend the day in Varenna on your own, if you’re looking for something more chill.

Another option would be to could embark on this Villa Balbianello and Flavors of Lake Como Walking and Boating Full-Day Tour (which leaves from Varenna).

Or, you could complete the “Golden Triangle” by taking the ferry from Varenna, to the nearby villages of Bellagio and Menaggio, and back again.

You could also opt for total convenience and let someone else figure out the transportation for you! Simply book this guided  Lake Como Day Trip from Milan – which has amazing reviews !

A boat cruising by on the water of Lake Como. A boat trip is a must-do activity during a day trip from Milan to Lake Como.

How to Purchase Train & Ferry Tickets

Train tickets.

For the route I recommend, you’ll need to purchase two sets of one-way train tickets for your day trip to Lake Como from Milan.

  • Milano Centrale to Como San Giovanni ; direct trip, about 40 minutes.
  • Varenna-Esino to Milano Centrale ; direct trip, about 65 minutes.

You should purchase your tickets online from TrenItalia . You can simply keep your tickets on your smartphone; no need to print them out. I recommend purchasing your tickets a few days ahead of your trip, just in case!

If you can, take an early train to Como (around 7 AM), and one of the last trains back from Varenna to Milan (around 8-9 PM). If you do that, you can easily spend three or more hours in each town!

For both one-way train tickets combined, you can expect to pay as little as €12 per person (for second class).

However, if navigating the trains by yourself seems like too much stress, you can simply book this Guided Lake Como Day Trip from Milan . I didn’t personally go on this tour, but it has great reviews!

Arriving at the ferry port in the town of Bellagio on the shore of Lake Como. Bellagio is one of the must-see towns on a day trip from Milan to Lake Como.

Ferry Tickets

You’ll also need to purchase two sets of one-way ferry tickets .

  • Fast boat from Como to Bellagio ; 45 minutes. (Make sure NOT to purchase slow boat tickets.)
  • Bellagio to Varenna ; 15 minutes.

You can purchase ferry tickets online, or in person at the ferry terminals.

If you book tickets online, you obviously don’t have to waste precious time standing in line! Either way, make sure to check the ferry  time tables before you leave for Lake Como, so you have a plan!

Quick Ferry Tips

  • You can check timetables and fares, and purchase tickets, from the official website .
  • Make sure to purchase the fast boat/hydrofoil from Como to Bellagio (45 minutes). The slow boat takes hours!
  • If you choose to purchase your tickets in person, buy them as soon as possible so you don’t miss out (high season is busy!) Once you arrive in Como, head straight for the waterfront and buy your ticket to Bellagio. As soon as you step off the ferry in Bellagio, purchase your ticket to Varenna.
  • Sometimes, the weather, waves, and other factors, make the ferries run less, skip certain piers, or not run at all.
  • If navigating the ferries seems too complicated, simply book a guided Lake Como tour, like this Lake Como Day Trip from Milan .

The shores of Bellagio seen from the water

What to Do During a Day Trip to Lake Como from Milan

Now that we’re all set with the route and tickets, let’s talk about Como, Bellagio, and Varenna , and what to do there!

A beautiful old street in the city of Como

1. Explore Como’s History-Rich Streets

Como is the largest of the three towns you’ll visit during your day trip. There’s plenty to do here, and no time to waste!

While in Como, spend a few hours roaming the quaint streets, browsing the many souvenir and wine shops, strolling along the lakeside promenade, and possibly taking a dip if it’s warm.

Make sure to stop by the beautiful Cattedrale di Santa Maria Assunta , the Piazza Alessandro Volta (Como’s loveliest square) and the medieval city gate, Porta Torre . If you want to learn about the history, consider taking a 1-hour guided walking tour .

Then, pop into Visini or Osteria del Gallo for a classic Italian lunch and some wine; whichever you choose, you can’t go wrong! Or, if you’re feeling fancy, book a table in advance at the one-Michelin-starred I Tigli in Theoria .

If you have time, you can also take the 7-minute funicular up to the peaceful town of Brunate , for incredible panoramic views over all of Lake Como and the chance to see another adorable town.

HOT TIP: Want a printable version of this itinerary? Get it here.

The shores of Bellagio with sun-streamed mountains in the background.

2. Stroll Around Beautiful Bellagio

Tall mountains, cypress trees, grand villas, and adorable cafés make up the lakeside town of Bellagio; and it goes without saying, but Bellagio is absolutely stunning.

While in Bellagio, roam the streets and pay attention to the details : the pretty pink flowers, the old cobblestones, beautiful iron lanterns, bright-colored shutters, and sweet little balconies. Honestly, if all you do in Bellagio is look around, it’s enough to keep you entertained for hours… This village is just so splendid .

Next, visit a wine shop to learn and taste some local wines . I really enjoyed my tastings at Enoteca La Principessa !

At 3:30 PM, you can join a guided tour of the famous Villa Serbelloni ‘s amazing 50-acre park and gardens. The views are unreal!

If you feel like taking to the water, then consider renting a kayak to explore the Lago di Como on your own!

Lastly, don’t forget to savor some fruity gelato, lakeside, before catching the ferry to Varenna!

The most beautiful village on Lake Como, Varenna.

3. Savor the Splendor of Varenna

Varenna absolutely stole my heart. While Bellagio seems to be everyone’s favorite town on Lake Como, I have to disagree! When your ferry approaches Varenna, you’ll know why I feel this way; in that moment, you’ll believe that you’ve never seen anything so unbelievably picturesque in your life.

In Varenna, make sure to visit the botanical gardens at the eclectic waterfront villa, Villa Monastero . (It closes around 8 PM in the summer, so you should have plenty of time!)

Savor an amazing dinner at Al Prato – or choose somewhere along the lakefront, and just enjoy the views.

Then, walk up and down the steep cobblestone alleyways and simply explore.

Before you leave, make sure to watch the sun dip behind the mountains as the sky turns pink. There’s no better way to wrap up your day trip to Lake Como – especially with a glass of wine in hand!

Boats and colorful houses in Varenna on Lake Como. Varenna is a can't-miss town on a day trip to Lake Como from Milano.

Should You Stay Overnight in Varenna?

Phew! Now that you know just how much there is to do on Lake Como, you might be thinking: “Should I stay overnight?” And I don’t blame you!

At the end of your day trip route, why not spend the night in Varenna? Maybe soak up a whole extra day on Lake Como?

If you have the time, then, YES! Of course , you should stay overnight .

If I were you, I’d choose one of these options in Varenna!

  • Bed & Breakfast il Bolentino ($)
  • Villa Varenna ($$)
  • Hotel Olivedo ($$)
  • Hotel Royal Victoria ($$$)

Whichever you choose, you can’t go wrong. The main thing to keep in mind is that ALL decent accommodation in Lake Como sells out far in advance (particularly between April and September). So if you do want to spend a night in Lake Como, book it now ! This is my favorite website for booking affordable accommodation in Italy. Typically, free cancellation is available, so you can book now with confidence!

The sun setting over the mountains on Lake Como as a boat floats by.

How to Take a Perfect Day Trip to Lake Como from Milan

So, there you have it my friends! Enchanting villages, incredible views, opulent villas, local wine, delicious food, and unforgettable memories await you in Lake Como.

If you’re considering taking a day trip to Lake Como from Milan, I promise, you won’t regret it!

A lovely and colorful old street in the city of Como

Milan to Lake Como Day Trip: Travel FAQs

Yes, Lake Como is absolutely worth a day trip from Milan! This lake – and the charming, centuries-old villages that surround it – are absolutely stunning. From boat rides, strolls along quaint cobblestone alleyways, and tasting delicious local wine, to exploring luxurious villas, swimming, hiking, and kayaking, there are endless fun things to do in Lake Como! It’s easy to take a day trip to Lake Como from Milan. You’ll leave Italy’s third largest lake (after Lake Garda and Lake Maggiore) with a full heart and super fond memories.

Yes, there is a direct train service from Milan to Lake Como. You can either choose to arrive in Como (the city) at Como San Giovanni station, or in the village of Varenna at Varenna-Esino train station. No matter which station you choose, the journey should not take more than 65 minutes. This guide details how to get to/from Lake Como, as well as what to do while you’re there.

Yes, the train from Milano to Lake Como is absolutely stunning! Your eyes will be glued to the window, as you watch city streets and signs fade away as you approach the magnificent Italian Alps.

Getting to beautiful Lake Como without a car is easy! You can either take the train or the bus. The quickest option is the high-speed, direct train – tickets are cheap, too! This guide details the best way to get to Lake Como via train, as well as what to do and see once you arrive!

Yes, you can do Lake Como in a day. You can choose to take a guided day trip from Milan , or you can explore on your own self-guided tour. With a full day, you will have time to explore up to 3 towns on the shores of Lake Como. You can choose to see Como, Bellagio, and Varenna (this is my recommendation!) or you can embark on the so-called “Golden Triangle” to discover the villages of Bellagio, Varenna, and Menaggio.

You need at least one day in Lake Como, so you can easily just take a day trip from Milan. You can choose to go on your own, or go on this top-rated guided tour . With one day, you’ll have time to see up to three towns (such as Como, Bellagio, and Varenna) if you take the direct train from Milan and then make use of the Lake’s extensive ferry system. If you have even more time available, you should stay longer in Lake Como. Anywhere between 2-5 days would be ideal, so that you have time to explore a few villages in depth, do some water activities, go hiking, stroll through some immaculate gardens and luxurious villas, and take in all of the incredible scenes on Lake Como.

You should plan for your day trip to Lake Como from Milan to take up an entire day. If you take this popular guided tour , you can expect it to last about 9 hours. But if you take a self-guided trip, you should plan to take one of the first trains from Milan to Lake Como (around 7 or 8 am) and take one of the last trains back (around 8 or 9 pm). It’s going to be a long day (about 12-14 hours), but I promise, it’s worth it! Of course, you can decide when you want to leave/return (trains run all day long), so your day trip can be shorter. But there’s so much to see and experience in Lake Como, you’ll want to relish every last hour that you can!

Yes, it is 100% worth going to Lake Como from Milan. Taking a day trip from Milan is super easy, and you’ll never regret spending a day on the sparkling shores of Italy’s third largest lake. This place – with its soaring mountains, picturesque towns, local wines, lovely restaurants, and opulent villas and gardens – is absolutely enchanting! Read on for details on how to take a day trip to Lake Como from Milan.

What to Pack

Depending on the season you visit will depend on the layers you need, summer is very warm but the winter is incredibly cold. Italy is very stylish and Italians famously dress well, so avoid white sneakers where possible and opt for a smart shoe or boot. Always have a beautiful coat in winter, it will hide anything less stylish you may be wearing as you explore in the colder months.

Here are a few top tips of what to wear:

  • Wool coat: During the colder months a beautiful wool coat is essential. You will fit in with the locals with this one .
  • Comfortable boots: As expected, you will do a lot of walking so opt for a comfortable but stylish boot that you’ve worn in. You can’t go wrong with a smart Chelsea boot, like these .
  • Floaty dress: In the summer opt for a long floaty dress so you know you are always prepared to enter religious sites. Bring a light scarf with you to cover your shoulders.
  • Sunscreen: Nothing spoils your trip (and your photos!) more than sunburn. Remember to prepare with a good, natural sunscreen and stay protected.
  • Reusable water bottle: Remember to keep hydrated during your tours, it can’t all be Aperol and coffee! Bring a reusable water bottle so you can keep topped up.
  • Travel insurance: As with all trips, it’s always best to purchase travel insurance so you know you are covered should anything go wrong.
  • HOTEL : I use this website for scoring amazing deals on accommodation worldwide.
  • HOSTELWORLD : If you’re traveling on a budget, this is the best website to score cheap hostel deals.
  • VACATION RENTAL : I use this site for finding the perfect vacation rental for an unforgettable getaway. 
  • TRAVEL INSURANCE : Never go on a trip without travel insurance! It isn’t worth the risk if something goes wrong.
  • GUIDED TOURS & EXCURSIONS : Many of the tours I recommend are hosted with Viator, which also works with local tour operators. Search them all here .
  • CHEAP FLIGHTS : Get great deals on flights using my favorite flight fare aggregator .
  • TRAVEL GEAR : A collection of all of my must-have travel gear are all listed here . Most important to remember is comfortable shoes and a scarf to use when visiting religious sites or if it gets a little cold.
  • CAR RENTAL : If you need to rent a car book car rental in advance here for the best deals.

SAVE THIS POST ON PINTEREST!

Are you visiting Milan, but want to flee the busy city streets for day? Are the mountains, fresh air, and glistening waters of Lake Como calling your name? I get it. Because I felt the same! So I decided to plan out the perfect self-guided day trip from Milan to Lake Como. This article includes everything you need to know about taking a day trip to Lake Como from Milan - including trains and ferries, and the best things to do as you explore the quaint towns of Como, Bellagio, and Varenna.

MORE ITALY INSPIRATION:

  • 7 Absolutely Magical Day Trips from Florence, Italy
  • The Dreamiest Amalfi Coast Itinerary (For 3, 4, or 5 Days)
  • 1 Day in Milan Itinerary: How to Spend 24 Hours in Milan
  • 10 Unforgettable Things to Do on the Amalfi Coast
  • 2 Days in Venice, Italy: A Perfect Venice Itinerary for First-Timers
  • 10 Best Things to Do in Alberobello, Puglia

Have you been to Lake Como before? Which town is your favorite? Did you stay overnight, or take a day trip from Milan?

This post contains affiliate links. When you make a purchase through the links on our website, we will receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you. We never recommend any products/services that we don’t absolutely love. These commissions help keep Maddy’s Avenue up and running, and we thank you for your support!

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lake como day tours from milan

About Maddy Cornelius

Hey! I'm the cook, world explorer, chief wordsmith, and photographer behind Maddy's Avenue. A California native, I've lived in many countries around the globe, but I'm currently traveling through Latin America. Slowly. Running two businesses. Livin' the "digital nomad" life. I’m here to learn, grow, and explore this planet - ever in search of big flavors and epic adventures. My goal? To inspire you to live a bold life: to discover yourself and the world around you at greater depths – one forkful, or one plane ticket, at a time. Thanks for being here!

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lake como day tours from milan

August 21, 2016 at 11:11 pm

So awesome!

lake como day tours from milan

August 22, 2016 at 10:31 am

Thanks, lady! :)

lake como day tours from milan

January 8, 2017 at 10:31 am

This post is so comprehensive and love the pics. Thank you for sharing it!

January 9, 2017 at 4:42 pm

We are glad you found this post helpful! Thanks for stopping by.

lake como day tours from milan

January 28, 2017 at 9:13 pm

This sounds fantastic! I’ll be in Italy in August and I’d love to stay in Lake Como but just don’t have enough time or budget. This sounds like a wonderful option so we don’t miss out entirely. Thank you very much for sharing :)

lake como day tours from milan

February 10, 2017 at 6:16 pm

Really helpful post! I wasn’t sure whether to stay the night in Como or not, but looks like a day trip works great.

lake como day tours from milan

February 19, 2017 at 1:33 pm

Wow! sounds like an awesome day trip…we will be in Milan in April, I am definitely adding this to our itinerary .Hopefully, it’ll go as smoothly for us. I will be printing this article out and referencing back to it. Thank you bunches!!

lake como day tours from milan

April 12, 2017 at 10:27 am

Hi thank you for the article! We are planning on doing a day trip, what would be the total cost for a day trip for transportation like?

lake como day tours from milan

April 19, 2017 at 9:57 am

Warning – if you do this day trip during peak season, you can expect massive queues and crowds everywhere. I went to Como on Easter Sunday, and ended up queueing for over an hour to buy my ferry ticket. Once I got to Bellagio, I joined the throngs of tourists trudging round the town, and ended up getting a slice of pizza from a takeaway shop for my lunch because I couldn’t find a restaurant that didn’t have a minimum 20 minute wait for a table. Go off-peak, or be prepared for a hellish experience that doesn’t show what is actually a very beautiful part of the world in its best light.

April 19, 2017 at 10:44 am

Hmmm, we’re wondering if that’s because it was Easter… We did this day trip during peak season (in late June), and we had no long queues, no issues with crowds, and no problems finding great restaurants to eat at.

lake como day tours from milan

April 30, 2017 at 5:42 am

This is a lovely guide, thank you for sharing. My husband and I are planning to visit Lake Como in November and I just discovered that a lot of the accommodation closes during this period. I was wondering, do you think it’s worth visiting at that time of year or is it better to save it for when the weather is warmer?

May 1, 2017 at 4:09 pm

We haven’t visited Como in November. However, our assumption would be that, providing you can find accommodation, you will have an incredible time. Lake Como is absolutely beautiful, and personally, we’d jump at the chance to visit in the off season to enjoy less crowds!

lake como day tours from milan

May 4, 2017 at 9:51 am

Hi! Thanks for this post. We are currently on a trip to Venice and Milan and have been using your blog posts for ideas! We are going to Como tomorrow, hopefully it goes as seemlessly as Venice went!

lake como day tours from milan

May 7, 2017 at 2:39 pm

I found your site by Googling searches for day trips to Como. I didn’t quite know about Bellagio and Varenna. I mean, wow! I was about to book an organized day trip tour to Como, but after reading your blog – your self-guided tour is easily understood. I’ll use your guide when I visit Milan in September 2017. Thank you!

lake como day tours from milan

May 10, 2017 at 2:32 am

Hi there, my mum and i are going to Milan in August and this seems like a great way to visit Como and the surrounding villages in a day so thank you! Do you feel you see enough on the ferry as we were thinking of doing a boat tour but if the ferry covers it then this is great.

May 10, 2017 at 1:00 pm

I’m not sure about a boat tour. Does that allow you to actually get off the boat and check out the towns? The ferry option, in my opinion, was perfect and if I had to do a day tour again, I wouldn’t do it any differently. I would say it’s not feasible to try to see more than Como, Bellagio, and Varenna in a day because you won’t have enough time to enjoy each place.

lake como day tours from milan

May 17, 2017 at 5:48 am

Great advice~! I am so exciting to follow this plan. Can you tell me what would be the time-table able for your ferry time? I would like to follow similar timing too as I have no idea how long should I spend to each cities

May 19, 2017 at 1:45 pm

It will depend on the train tickets you purchase, and what times are available on your dates. So here’s what we can tell you. We recommend getting on one of the earliest trains to Como, hopefully arriving by 10 or 11 am. Then we would recommend spending two or three hours in each town, and taking one of the last trains back to Milan.

lake como day tours from milan

May 30, 2017 at 4:19 am

this is an amazing and detailed way to for a day trip to lake como. thank you for sharing the information. i wanted to know that do we need to prebook the kayak in bellagio or is it possible to rent one on the spot and what are the approximate rates for the kayak.

May 30, 2017 at 11:00 am

Hi Preet. We are glad you found our post useful. Please book your Bellagio kayaking tour by clicking here . If you have any other questions, please let us know.

lake como day tours from milan

May 30, 2017 at 6:41 am

I see a lot of people that say you should just take the train from Milan directly to Varenna instead of Como. Thoughts?

May 30, 2017 at 11:01 am

Hi Jennifer,

If you can find that route available on your travel date, and if you’re not interested in visiting Como, then I don’t see why not!

May 30, 2017 at 12:31 pm

But Como itself is definitely worth visiting it sounds. Some have said Como might be a bit too busy? We are going the 2nd week of Septmber.

May 30, 2017 at 12:44 pm

You’re right, Como is a lot bigger and busier than Varenna and Bellagio. However, we thought it was beautiful and very much enjoyed it. It just depends on what you’re looking for on your day trip. Good luck!

lake como day tours from milan

June 6, 2017 at 6:59 am

Hi Maddy, Me and my boyfriend are going do Lake Como in late June and we’re going to do the same thing that you did! We are going to catch one of the first trains in Milan to Como and be back in Milan in one of the last ones from Varenna. So we wanted to know how many hours we should spend in each place and if it’s better to catch de ferry or the speed service?

June 6, 2017 at 9:41 am

Hi Carolina!

Sounds like a great plan. If you can spend about three hours in each town, that would be perfect. When it comes to transportation, choose whatever available ferries fit into your schedule, while also getting you to the next place as quickly as possible. If that means taking the speed service, then do that.

– Maddy

lake como day tours from milan

June 8, 2017 at 8:15 am

My best friend and I followed this to a T during our visit to Lake Como last month. This guide was perfect! Elsa’s was one of the best meals we had while in Italy. Being recent grads, it helped to know all the expenses we could expect beforehand as well. Thanks so much for writing this, it was SUPER helpful!

lake como day tours from milan

June 20, 2017 at 11:19 am

Thank you for the great advice.

Am i correct in saying that that it takes 2 hours to get from Como to Bellagio by Ferry? If that is the case, is there a quicker way?

June 20, 2017 at 11:52 am

When you’re searching for your ferry times on this website https://www.navigazionelaghi.it/eng/c_orari.asp make sure that you check the box that says “include fast service” before clicking “search.” You should find ferry trips that are 42 minutes instead of 2 hours.

June 20, 2017 at 12:06 pm

Thanks a lot for the quick response!

Do you need to book tickets to Como/ Varenna prior to travel or can you book them when arriving at the station in Milan?

Thanks once again,

June 20, 2017 at 12:23 pm

You can do either one. I prefer to do it online before and have the tickets on my phone, just in case.

lake como day tours from milan

June 30, 2017 at 3:39 pm

Hi! This was such a good guide…we plan to visit como in a day or two (currently in Milan) for a day. Do you think this (como, bellagio, varenna) is possible in a day with a three year old?

June 30, 2017 at 4:26 pm

Hi Ayesha! Well, we won’t pretend we know what it’s like to travel with a three year old… But we can’t see why it wouldn’t be possible! But if you think it’s too much hassle to go to all three places, you could cut out Bellagio and go straight to Varenna. (However, we highly recommend sticking to this guide if possible. You would regret missing Bellagio.)

lake como day tours from milan

July 11, 2017 at 3:39 pm

First of all ,thank you for such a wonderful article. I am interested in following your guide but i only have 9 hours to do COMO , bellgaio and Varenna trip.

I am travelling with 6 year old and we are strictly vegans. Any suggestion to veg restaurant will be bonus.

Could you suggest how many hours we should spend in these 3 villages.

Also what’s the difference between speed cruise (40 mins) and slow ferry ( two hours). Is there any significance ?

WIll be travelling to Italy end of this month.

lake como day tours from milan

August 1, 2017 at 2:19 pm

I love your guide to the lake como day trip. I was wondering how far is the ferry station from the como train station and how you got from one to the other. Also, what are the queues like for getting tickets on the day. Thanks

lake como day tours from milan

August 14, 2017 at 5:23 am

Love your guide, its exactly what we are looking for. Im looking at the time tables for the ferry, did it take you about 2 hours to get from Como to Bellagio?

August 18, 2017 at 10:52 am

Thanks! No, we took the fast ferry, which is about 40 minutes. There are other comments in this thread regarding this matter. Thanks for stopping by!

lake como day tours from milan

October 13, 2017 at 9:45 pm

What are your thoughts doing the three places the other way round eg Milan to Varenna, Varenna to Bellagio by ferry. Bellagio to Como by ferry. Como to Milan by train. Do you see any disadvantages this way round?

October 14, 2017 at 12:41 pm

I just came back from Italy and I did that exactly. I went to Varenna first then Bellagio to Como. Great view either way!

lake como day tours from milan

December 3, 2017 at 6:35 am

What about 1 day to como in winter i am planning in December before New year u think still possible?

December 3, 2017 at 6:56 am

We visited during summer, so we can’t be sure, however it’s our understanding that many places shut down for the winter months. Check the ferry and train schedules to see if it’s possible, then see if the places you want to visit (restaurants, etc.) are open in winter.

lake como day tours from milan

January 17, 2018 at 4:06 am

Read your post and immediately was interested in following your guide to Lake Como. Then, I read the posts and made up my mind to do it. I’m traveling this coming July. I’m traveling with a special needs kids who only eats hamburgers and fries. Did you happen to see any burger joints? Hate to carry his food around, but obviously do if I have to. Thank you so much.

lake como day tours from milan

January 28, 2018 at 6:11 pm

Wouldn’t it be too cold to roam Lake Como on Feb 2018? I’m thinking that the wind will be too cold to enjoy the lake? Thanks

lake como day tours from milan

February 20, 2018 at 11:13 am

Thank you so much for sharing this! This post is brilliant and I will follow the exact itinerary :)

Just one question: what’s the ferry port name from Como? When I perform the search on that website you linked , from “Como” to “Bellagio” it finds no routes. From Bellagio to Varenna I got to see the time table, but nothing comes up from Como.

Thank you so much for your help!

lake como day tours from milan

June 11, 2018 at 10:06 am

Love your comprehensive day trip! I think I will be following your itinerary later this month for my day trip from Milan. I’m curious, what day of the week did you visit? I have read that a lot of shops close rather early (or are closed completely) on sundays, and that many shops don’t open until midday on Mondays. Did you find this to be true? My two options for a day trip are a Sunday and Monday, so I want to choose the best day for shops and restaurants to be open. Thanks!

lake como day tours from milan

November 20, 2018 at 10:31 am

Hello, Thank you for this detailed idea of Lake Como. I am planning on visiting Lake Como in January. Will the same trip be applicable then? or is this ideal only for the summers?

lake como day tours from milan

June 26, 2019 at 10:25 pm

Thanks you. This was supremely helpful.

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Day Trip to Lake Como from Milan – Plan the Perfect Lake Como Day Tour from Milan!

Posted on Last updated: May 16, 2023

Are you planning a day trip to Lake Como from Milan, but not sure where to start? You’ve come to the right place!

In this article I have outlined everything you need to know to plan the perfect Milan to Lake Como day trip.

Including how to get there, how to get around, the most beautiful places to visit on a Lake Como day trip, and much more.

Nestled at the foot of the Italian Alps, Lake Como is one of the most popular destinations in Italy, and it’s easy to see why. With its spectacular views, beautiful gardens, imposing villas and picturesque villages, there’s no other place like it.

I’m a bit embarrassed to admit, that despite living in Milan for 18 years, I only properly visited Lake Como this year. It took me a while, but I made up for it by thoroughly exploring the lake this summer, and now want to share my top tips with you.

So what are you waiting for, let’s dive in and start planning your glamorous day trip to Lake Como!

  • 1 About Lake Como
  • 2.1 By train
  • 2.3 With a tour
  • 3 How to get around Lake Como 
  • 4.2 Bellagio
  • 4.3 Boat tour around Lake Como
  • 4.4 Varenna
  • 4.5 Castello di Vezio
  • 4.6 Back to Milan
  • 5 The best Lake Como day tours from Milan
  • 6.1 In Milan
  • 6.2 In Lake Como
  • 7 What to pack for your Lake Como trip from Milan

The picturesque streets and views of Bellagio in Lake Como, Italy - the highlight of any Milan to Lake Como day trip

The picturesque streets and views of Bellagio in Lake Como, Italy

About Lake Como

Surrounded by the steep slopes of the Alps, in Northern Italy, Lake Como is a must-see on any Italy itinerary .

The Y shaped lake is a famously upscale destination where elegant resort towns, charming villages, and Renaissance villas edge the water.

While many holiday makers spend their entire trip sunning themselves by the lake, visiting Lake Como from Milan on a day trip is also really popular.

To help you make the most of your time in this famous part of Italy, here’s a helpful guide about what to do in Lake Como for a day.  

Check out some of the most popular Lake Como day tours below!

lake como day tours from milan

Views over Lake Como from Castello di Vezio near Varenna

Views over Lake Como from Essentia Guest House

Views over Lake Como from Essentia Guest House

How to get to Lake Como from Milan 

Before we dive into the best things to do on a Lake Como day trip, I want to go over the logistics of how you can actually get to Lake Como. Here we go over the different transport modes, and the pros and cons of each.  

A Milan to Como day trip is made super easy by the direct trains that run to both Varenna and Como.

The Milan to Lake Como route is served by the Regionale (a 49 minute direct train) and the faster EuroCity (just a 36 minutes train ride).

Throughout the day there are loads of trains to Como San Giovanni from Milano Centrale train station, and they’re also pretty affordable. The prices for train tickets range from 5 to 15 EUR one way. 

Exploring the streets of Varenna in Lake Como, Italy

Exploring the streets of Varenna in Lake Como, Italy

It can be tempting to drive to Lake Como, but it’s honestly not the best way to get around. The roads are really narrow, the traffic can be awful and it’s almost impossible to find free parking spots.

Driving is a good idea only if you are planning on doing a hike in the area and need to get to the trail head in a small, remote town.

If you only plan on visiting the main sights of Lake Como (Bellagio, Varenna, Como etc), you don’t need a car.

If you still really want to drive, I recommended heading to the town of Como and leaving the car there, as it’s a much bigger town, easier to navigate by car and to find parking.

From there, you can then travel around the Lake Como area with the ferries.

Cruising around Lake Como with the ferries

Cruising around Lake Como with the ferries

Exploring Varenna in Lake Como, Italy - my favourite place to visit on a Milan to Lake Como day trip

Exploring Varenna in Lake Como, Italy

With a tour

If you really want to make your day trip to Como from Milan as easy as possible, then you might want to consider a tour.

There’s a range of different tours to choose from, each of them offering slightly different itineraries. One option is this tour , which takes you all the way from Milan to Lake Como in a luxury coach.

The day includes visits to the most famous sites around the lake, a Como walking tour, a relaxing private lake cruise, and a visit to the villages of Bellagio and Varenna.  

If you’re visiting Lake Como and Italy in summer , I highly recommend joining a Lake Como day tour .

View over Lake Como from Castello di Vezio, near Varenna

View over Lake Como from Castello di Vezio, near Varenna

As I already mentioned, cars aren’t ideal for travelling around Lake Como, but in high season also the ferries and public transport become complicated. 

Lake Como is one of the most popular destinations in Italy, which features on everyone Italy bucket list , and in high season that means it’s almost impossible to find parking or space on public transport.

Save yourself the hassle of having to wait under the sun for the next bus, and join a Lake Como day tour , where you’ll be pampered by a local tour guide, and your transfers will be on a comfortable luxury coach.

Click here to book your Milan to Lake Como day tour!  

Or check out prices & availability below!

Exploring the picturesque streets of Varenna in Lake Como, Italy

Exploring the picturesque streets of Varenna in Lake Como, Italy

How to get around Lake Como 

No matter what time of year you do a Milan to Lake Como day trip, the easiest way to get between the main towns is by taking a ferry.

Most of the towns and villages around the lake are connected by a ferry service or Navigazione Laghi.

There’s various tickets and boat types to opt for, which means you can travel around the lake and explore at your own pace.

The three different types of boats to choose from include: the slow local boat (battello), the rapid hydrofoil (aliscafo), and the car ferry (traghetto) which also takes foot passengers.

Thankfully, ferry tickets are very affordable, with fares starting at $2.50 . You can take a look at the official fares here and plan your route around the lake on the Navigazione Laghi website.  

There is also a public transport system, but due to the Y shape of the lake, it’s not really the most efficient way to get around.

Bellagio, in Lake Como, as seen from the ferry - the best way to get around Lake Como on a day tour

Bellagio as seen from the ferry

Best places to visit on a Lake Como day trip

There is so much to see and do in Lake Como that you won’t be able to fit absolutely everything in on a day trip to Como from Milan (that’s why I actually suggest extending to a 3-day Lake Como itinerary )!

However, you will have enough time to see the area’s best bits. Here are the most popular spots and must-see places that I recommended fitting into your itinerary.  

First off, start your day early by taking the train to the city of Como and arrive in the morning. This is the busiest town on the lake, and the jumping off point for exploring the rest of the lake and surrounding area.

Don’t waste too much of your time in Como, there’s lots more beautiful sights to be seen elsewhere. You can see the main sights while walking from the station to the ferry port.  

lake como day tours from milan

Exploring Piazza del Duomo in Como, Italy

The rooftop of Saint Mary Assunta Cathedral in Como

The rooftop of Saint Mary Assunta Cathedral in Como

The Saint Mary Assunta Cathedral is an impressive example of Gothic architecture that took almost 400 years to build.

Located in the main square, the church is free to enter and is open most days from 10:30 am to 5:30 pm.

You could also pay a visit to Tempio Voltiano, a neoclassical temple built in 1927. The museum was opened 100 years after the death of Alessandro Volta, pioneer of electricity who was from Como.  

Make sure to pass through the bustling Piazza Cavour and soak up the sight and sounds of the city.

If you have time to spare, there’s the option to take a ride on the Como-Brunate funicular and catch a glimpse of the view from above.  

Exploring the streets of Como in Italy - the starting point of all day trips to Lake Como from Milan

Exploring the streets of Como in Italy

No trip to Lake Como from Milan would be complete without hopping on a ferry, so next up it’s time to take the boat to Bellagio.

It’s best to opt for the hydrofoil (the fast boat) to Bellagio, the journey takes around an hour, compared to the regular boat which takes 2-3 hours.

Sit back and relax on the ferry, taking the chance to glimpse views of the lake from the water. Once you arrive in Bellagio you can spend some time simply wandering around the picturesque streets of this cute town.

Bellagio is often considered the most beautiful town in Lake Como. Personally, I preferred Varenna, but there’s no denying the charm of Bellagio, and that it’s definitely a very popular spot.

Exploring the picturesque streets of Bellagio in Lake Como, Italy - the highlight of my Lake Como day tour

Exploring the picturesque streets of Bellagio in Lake Como, Italy

There’s lots of charming things to see, including a picturesque pathway along the lake. One of the must-see sights here includes Punta Spartivento, which is the exact spot where the three branches of the lake meet.

Also here is the 11th century Basilica di San Giacomo, open weekdays 8AM to 12PM and 3:30PM to 6PM on weekends. Entrance is free.

Don’t miss the pretty 19th century Villa Melzi and Gardens, which also offers up captivating lakeside views. Open every day from 10AM to 7PM, tickets cost 8EUR.  

After you’ve spent time seeing the main sights, you may want to take a break or have a bite to eat. Enjoy lunch in one of the many local restaurants and then it’s back onto the lake again.  

Lakeside views in Bellagio, Italy

Lakeside views in Bellagio, Italy

The views over Lake Como from Punta Spartivento in Bellagio, Italy

The views over Lake Como from Punta Spartivento in Bellagio, Italy

Boat tour around Lake Como

Next up on your day trip to Como from Milan is a boat ride around the lake. There’s a long list of tours to opt for, one like this follows a well-rounded itinerary.

You will get the best views of the lake, towns, and villas from the water, so it’s something that you really shouldn’t miss out on.

Since you’re only visiting Lake Como on a day trip, you won’t have much time to go inside many of the main attractions, which is why I like the option of a boat tour around Lake Como .

This tour takes around 1.5 – 2 hours and explores lots of the most attractive spots in the area. You’ll be able to see all of the famous villas and beautiful landscaped gardens that edge the shores of the lake.

You will enjoy the view over iconic villas, like Villa Carlotta, Villa del Balbianello or the villa of the famous actor George Clooney, as well as the cute towns, lush green hills and snow capped Swiss Alps in the distance.

Bellagio as seen from the ferry

A boat cruising past in Lake Como, Italy

This Lake Como boat tour is private and there’s enough room for five people so it’s a good option if you’re traveling as a couple, group of friends, or a family.

You also get to have the bonus of a local guide who will not only pilot the boat, but will also offer some fascinating insight and history about the sights.  

In the summer months you can also request to stop off and swim in the lake’s clear waters – a really magical way to spend an afternoon on your day trip to Lake Como.

This also means that you get the chance to steer away from the busy tourist sights and simply enjoy the beauty of the lake for a while.  

Click here to book your boat tour in Lake Como!

A sailing boat in Varenna, Lake Como

A sailing boat in Varenna, Lake Como

Once you’re back on dry ground, it’s once again time to hop aboard another boat, and after a short ferry ride, reach the next stop of your Lake Como day trip; the beautiful Varenna.  

Varenna is yet another beautiful town located along the shores of Lake Como. Ferries leave Como regularly and take around an hour. It’s well worth taking the time to visit Varenna during your day trip.  

The picturesque town was originally only a small fishing village. The town actually has an interesting history and has had a long-standing rivalry with Como.

Thankfully, that’s all water under the bridge now, and this lakeside settlement is a peaceful spot to enjoy on the final leg of your Lake Como tour from Milan.  

Walking along the famous Lovers Walk in Varenna

Walking along the famous Lovers Walk in Varenna

Some must-see sights here include the Walk of Lovers along the lake. Don’t worry if you’re not in a relationship, this lakeside pathway is simply a nice place for a stroll along the water.

It starts right by Varenna Pier and offers some great views of the lake and the town.

The Piazza San Giorgio (main square) is where you should head to see some of the everyday life of the town, if you have time you could stop for a coffee and a spot of people watching.  

Next up is the attractive Villa Monastero. Famous for its lush botanical gardens, the house itself was first built as a convent in the 12th century. Tickets start at 8 EUR, open everyday 9:30AM to 8PM.  

Some of the beautiful lake views along the Lovers Walk in Varenna

Some of the beautiful lake views along the Lovers Walk in Varenna

Varenna at sunset as seen from the lake

Varenna at sunset as seen from the lake

Castello di Vezio

Finally, if you have a little time to spare then I really recommend taking the time to visit the ruins of Castello di Vezio.

It’s a bit of a hike to get there, taking around 30-45 minutes, but the views are so beautiful that I think it’s totally worth visiting.

Dating back to the 11th Century, the castle was opened to the public in 1999. There is a permanent exhibition inside the castle, but the selling point is without a doubt the stunning view.

Views over Varenna and Lake Como from Castello di Vezio - a must-see on any Lake Como day trip

Views over Varenna and Lake Como from Castello di Vezio

Back to Milan

Now that you’ve successfully ticked off everything to do in Lake Como on a day trip from Milan, you can hop aboard the train from Varenna all the way back to Milan.

The journey time varies but can take between an hour and an hour and a half.  Depending on what time of the day you wrap up your day trip, you might even have time to explore Milan at night .

Exploring the rooftop of the Duomo cathedral in Milan, Italy

Exploring the rooftop of the Duomo cathedral in Milan, Italy

The best Lake Como day tours from Milan

If you really want to visit Lake Como from Milan but don’t want to deal with public transport, timings, schedules or parking, then I recommend taking a tour.

Day tours to Lake Como from Milan really make the day run smoothly.

You can just spend the day enjoying the sights rather than worrying about what time the ferry is or opening hours. Everything will be taken care of for you, so that all you need to decide on is the best place to eat lunch!

Here’s a few of the best tours from Milan to Como to give you a bit more of an insight into what is included.  

View over Lake Como and the gardens of Villa Carlotta from the higher floors of the villa

View over Lake Como and the gardens of Villa Carlotta from the higher floors of the villa

From Milan: Lake Como, Bellagio, and Varenna Day Tour  

This full day trip starts with you getting picked up in a luxury bus from your accommodation in Milan.

From there you will be whisked away to Lake Como while your helpful guide talks you through the different sights and history of the area.

The tour includes visits to the famous villas and gardens around Lake Como and the chance to see the three branches of the lake.

You will stop in Como for a guided walking tour of the city and pay a visit to the neoclassical Villa Olmo and Italian garden. Then you’ll take a private cruise on the lake and visit the villages of Bellagio and Varenna.

Click here to book your day tour to Lake Como, Bellagio & Varenna from Milan!

Or click below to see prices & availability for your chosen dates!

The clear turquoise water of the beach in Varenna

The clear turquoise water of the beach in Varenna

Walking along the famous Lovers Walk in Varenna

From Milan: Lake Como, Bellagio, and Varenna Guided Day Trip

Another great option for a day tour to Lake Como from Milan , this itinerary also picks you up from your accommodation in an airconditioned coach.

The tour takes you through the mountainous scenery before arriving in Como. Here your guide will take you on a tour of Como Cathedral and other historic attractions in the city.

Then you take a boat trip on the lake itself and listen to commentary highlighting the various famous sights along the lake.  

Once at Bellagio, you will get two hours to spend exploring the beautiful town at your own pace, stopping off for a bite to eat in a restaurant before taking another ferry to the vibrant Varenna.

The village’s pretty streets are yours to wander for a while and you have the opportunity to visit the popular sights in the village. Your coach will then be ready and waiting to drive you all the way back to Milan.

Check out prices and availability for your day trip to Lake Como from Milan here, or in the widget below!

Enjoying the view over Lake Como from Castello di Vezio, near Varenna

Enjoying the view over Lake Como from Castello di Vezio, near Varenna

Lake Como, Bellagio & Varenna Private Guided Tour

For those who want to treat themselves, this private tour is the way to do so. A private tour will give you ultimate flexibility, as well as the whole attention of your tour guide.

This tour doesn’t include transfer to Lake Como from Milan, which is the best option for those who want to then stick around Lake Como at the end of the tour.

You can make your own way there, have a knowledgeable local guide show you around, and then stick around Lake Como for a lakefront aperitivo, sunset and maybe even dinner.

Click here to book your private tour of Bellagio, Varenna & Lake Como!

View over Como from the Como-Brunate funicular

View over Como from the Como-Brunate funicular

From Milan: Lake Como, St. Moritz & Bernini Train Full-Day Trip

This tour is a bit different from the others, in that it goes beyond Lake Como, and adventures to St. Moritz and Bernini.

You won’t spend as much time in Lake Como, but considering you’ll also be visiting another country (Switzerland), I think it’s still worth exploring.

This tour includes some free time in St. Moritz, as well as the gorgeous train ride on the panoramic train from Bernini to St. Moritz.

Click here to book your day trip from Milan to Lake Como, St Moritz and Bernini, or check prices & availability below!

Exploring the picturesque streets of Bellagio in Lake Como, Italy

From Milan: Lake Como, Lugano & Bellagio Bus Day Trip

This tour is also a bit different, in that it also goes beyond Lake Como. This tour will take you also to the Swiss city of Lugano.

It gives you a bit more time in Lake Como and Bellagio, since Lugano is closer than St Moritz, and it allows you to see the highlights of Italy and Switzerland in one tour.

It’s not the classic Milan to Lake Como day trip, but it’s definitely an interesting tour that includes more sights than just the usual ones.

Click here to book your day trip to Lake Como & Lugano, or check the widget below for prices & availability!

View of Bellagio and the mountains behind it from the lake

View of Bellagio and the mountains behind it from the lake

Tempio Voltiano in Como, Italy

Tempio Voltiano in Como, Italy

Where to stay for a Lake Como day trip

If you’re visiting Lake Como on a day trip from Milan, you’re probably looking for advice on where to stay in Milan .

I personally suggest staying close to the train station, so that you don’t have to waste time travelling within Milan before your day trip even starts.

That said, I included some also suggestions for where to stay in Lake Como , in case you choose to extend your day trip and spend some time in Lake Como.

Beautiful summer views in Lake Como, Italy

Beautiful summer views in Lake Como, Italy

Budget:   Ostello Bello – There are two hostels of this chain around Milan and both are good budget options, with a lively atmosphere, spacious dorms and convenient central locations.

Click here to book your stay at Ostello Bello in Milano!

Mid-range:   Ibis Milano Centro – Part of the Ibis chain, this is a good mid-range hotel, with a guaranteed standard of room set up and a great central location.

Check out prices and availability for Ibis Milano Centro here!

Luxury:   Galleria Vik Milano – If you’re looking to treat yourself, and your Italy trip budget permits it, this is the place to do so. Located in Galleria Vittorio Emanuele, it couldn’t get any more central than this, with stunning views over the galleria just outside your window.

Don’t miss out, book your stay at Galleria Vik Milano here!

Admiring the perfect symmetry of Galleria Vittorio Emanuele in Milan, Italy

Admiring the perfect symmetry of Galleria Vittorio Emanuele in Milan, Italy

In Lake Como

Budget: Spazio 77 – By House Of Travellers –  This budget-friendly option in Como provides a choice of self-catering apartments. It’s located in the town center of Como with bars, restaurants, and public transport nearby.  

Click here to see prices and availability at Spazio 77 in Como!

Mid-range:   Essentia Guest House  – I stayed here and loved it. Featuring simply amazing views over Lake Como, this guest house has a stunning outdoors area and hot tub!

Click here to see prices and availability at Essentia Guest House!

Luxury:  Hotel Royal Victoria  –  Providing a high-end place to stay in Varenna, this luxury hotel is situated in a charming 19th century building, with manicured gardens, a swimming pool, and awesome lake views.

Click here to book your stay at Hotel Royal Victoria in Varenna!

The outdoors area and view at Essentia Guest House in Lake Como

The outdoors area and view at Essentia Guest House in Lake Como

What to pack for your Lake Como trip from Milan

You don’t really need anything specific for a day trip to Lake Como. Just remember to pack your usual travel essentials and follow my Italy packing list , and you’ll be fine.

That said, here are a couple of items that you’ll be glad to have once you arrive in Lake Como.

Camera – Given how beautiful Lake Como is, you want to make sure you capture it in all its beauty!

Reusable water bottle – There are water fountains in all the main towns in Lake Como, so you can easily refill your water bottle throughout the day. Even if you’re visiting Italy in winter , it’s important to stay hydrated!

Walking shoes – You will end up walking a lot, so make sure you have comfortable shoes!

Also, don’t forget to buy Italy travel insurance ! You don’t want travel mishaps to ruin your dream Lake Como day trip!

The famous Villa Carlotta in Lake Como, near Menaggio

The famous Villa Carlotta in Lake Como, near Menaggio

Check out the web story of this post here!

Final thoughts on doing a Milan to Lake Como day trip

There you have it, the ultimate guide to planning the perfect day trip to Lake Como from Milan! Have you been to Lake Como before? How did you find it? Let me know in the comments below!

Like I mentioned before, I only got round to visiting Lake Como this year, despite living in Milan for 18 years. I can’t believe just how much beauty I was missing out on.

Lake Como is such a popular destination for a reason. The beautiful scenery, picturesque towns, beautiful architecture and lush nature are all elements that make it a must on any Italy itinerary , even if you’re visiting Italy at Christmas !.

While I’m not a big tour person, I have to admit that joining an organised tour to Lake Como from Milan is an excellent idea. In high season, the huge tourist crowds and lack of easy transport or parking will make an independent trip very hard to enjoy.

Instead, with an organised tour , you can just sit back, relax and enjoy the beauty of Lake Como, while someone else deals with the hassle of organising.

I hope you found this Lake Como day tour guide useful, and that it will help you plan your trip! If you have any questions, just let me know in the comments below!

Enjoyed reading about my Lake Como tour from Milan? Pin it!

Photo collage of the Varenna, Bellagio and Lake Como views with text overlay saying

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Full Day Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano from Milan Tour

Experience italy and switzerland’s majestic mountain towns and cruise lake como.

Longing to stroll the cobbled alleys of Bellagio and Lugano and sip a refreshing drink onboard a Lake Como cruise but finding it overwhelming to plan all three on your own? That’s why we’ve crafted this full-day tour from Milan, which includes self-guided strolls, comfortable coach transport, and stops in both Italy and Switzerland. Our expert guides will ensure your experience in the Italian Lakes District and beyond has the ideal mix of insights, landscapes, and picture-perfect cafés.

Full Day Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano from Milan Tour

  • Travel to Lugano and Lake Como
  • Visit Parco Ciani in Lugano
  • Free time in Lugano

Explore Bellagio

  • Como Cathedral

Cruise Lake Como

  • Sail by celebrity villas
  • The perfect trip from Milan

Upon meeting your guide at 8:30 am at Milan’s Porta Garibaldi Train Station, your day begins with a scenic drive to Lugano, where you’ll have free time to sip coffee with awe-inspiring views and visit the town’s many boutique shops. Then, continue by coach to Bellagio, and with guide recommendations in hand, you’ll discover the town’s hidden gems and picture-perfect cobblestone alleys that lead to the enchanting lakeside.

Just when you think you’ve absorbed all the beauty, it’s time to set sail on Lake Como to discover the region’s quaint villages and rolling mountains. Grab a drink from the onboard restaurant, keep your eye out for Hollywood film locations and celebrity houses, and snap iconic photos, as all too soon, it’ll be time to board your coach back to Milan.

Full Day Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano from Milan Tour Description

Your 10-hour tour includes:

Tickets for the Lake Como cruise

Expert, English-speaking guide

Transfers in a comfortable, air-conditioned bus

Free time to admire ​​Santa Maria degli Angioli Church

Time to wander at your leisure in Lugano and Bellagio

Audio headsets to ensure you can always hear your guide

Milan to Lugano

Brimming with excitement for the day ahead, you'll meet your guide and fellow group members at Milan's Porta Garibaldi Train Station early in the morning. Shortly after 8:30 am, once everyone is settled into their seats in a comfortable air-conditioned coach, you'll weave your way out of Milan just as it wakes up around you and set your sights on Switzerland.

The hour-long drive to Lugano will quickly pass as you enjoy picturesque views and listen as your guide shares stories about the many celebrities who frequent this charming town, lured by its sweeping vistas and the allure of exclusive shopping.

Once you've arrived in Lugano, aptly named the "Monte Carlo of Switzerland," you'll have free time to explore at your leisure. Opt to grab a piping hot coffee at one of the charming cafés, and be sure to head inside a few of the many boutique shops, which are full of rich Swiss chocolate and fine goods. Art and architecture enthusiasts should also head inside the Santa Maria degli Angioli Church to admire the magnificent 'Passion and Crucifixion' fresco, created by Da Vinci's apprentice, Bernardino Luini.

At a pre-designated time, reunite with your group at the coach, ready for a picturesque journey to Bellagio. Once there, set out on a self-guided tour. For insider tips on the best dining spots, vistas, shops, or tucked-away treasures, your guide is a wealth of knowledge. Or, simply wander along the cobbled lanes and see what little-known wonders you can uncover. Either way, there’s no doubt the best way to experience Bellagio’s refreshing alpine air and elegant atmosphere is on foot or with a coffee in hand.

After exploring Bellagio and admiring the turquoise waters of Lake Como from shore, you’ll be ready to leave land behind and embark on a scenic cruise. Depending on the season, you’ll experience either a 2-hour cruise (April to October) or a 50-minute cruise (November - March), both of which give you ample time to spot iconic villas from films like Star Wars and James Bond and the much-talked-about residence of George Clooney.

Throughout the cruise, you can also head to the onboard restaurant to grab yourself a snack and refreshing drink. But all too soon, you’ll have arrived back on the shore of Lake Como, where your bus will be waiting to transfer you back to Milan.

From March 18th, 2024, the ferry cruise will be replaced by a 1 hour private boat trip

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What you get with this tour

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1 total reviews

Jo was fantastic made it a great experience However the boat was way over crowded and very uncomfortable was not able to see what Jo was talking about most of the time which was very unfortunate so since this happened definitely not worth the purchase price.

Frequently Asked Questions

What to bring?

It's always smart to wear comfortable shoes since you'll be on your feet for some of the tour. A good camera, seasonally appropriate clothing, and a water bottle are also recommended.

It's always smart to wear comfortable shoes since you'll be on your feet for some of the tour. A good camera, seasonally appropriate clothing, and a water bottle are also recommended.

Is this tour run by The Tour Guy?

No, this tour is operated by one of our trusted and vetted partners in Milan.

What if I have concerns about my mobility on this tour?

If you have any doubts about your mobility, please let us know beforehand.  This tour includes walking on uneven terrain and navigating sometimes steep staircases.

What happens if it rains?

We run our Full Day Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano from Milan Tour rain or shine. If the weather is extremely bad and we cannot proceed with the tour, we'll let you know as soon as possible.

Is there a dress code to join this Full Day Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano from Milan Tour?

While there is not a specific dress code, you will be expected to be wearing shoes and a shirt to enter establishments. We also recommend wearing clothing that’s suitable for the season and that you'll be comfortable walking in.

Is lunch or dinner included in the price of the tour?

No, but you’ll have plenty of time to find delicious food throughout the tour, and our guides are always happy to point you in the right direction. There are also refreshments for sale on board the Lake Como cruise.

Can I bring my kids, and do I have to pay for them?

Yes, everyone is welcome on our Full Day Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano from Milan Tour. Infants (0 to 1 year old) are free, and we offer a slightly reduced price for children aged 2 to 14 and under. Please choose accordingly when booking.

Where does this tour end?

This tour ends at the designated meeting spot. Our guides are happy to point you in the direction of public transport or arrange a taxi if required.

Does this tour include hotel pickup?

No, hotel pickup is not included on this tour. You'll meet your guide at Porta Garibaldi Train Station.

Free 24-hr cancellation on group tours! Learn more

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Every Steph

6 BEST Lake Como Tours from Milan [2024]

By: Author Stefania Guglielmi

Posted on Last updated: February 9, 2024

Categories Europe , Italy

Check out my selection of Lake Como tours from Milan, which will help you plan the ultimate day trip to one of Italy’s most sought-after destinations. 

Lake Como is located in the Lombardy region of Italy. It is one of the most stunning and iconic destinations in the world , and it can’t be missing from any Northern Italy itinerary . I mean, I might be a little biased as I’m from Northern Italy, but ask anyone who has visited and they will tell you the same!

With its breathtaking views, crystal clear waters, and picturesque towns, it’s no wonder that Lake Como has become a popular tourist spot. Milan, being the closest major city, is a convenient starting point for exploring the lake. 

Image of Villa del Babinello located on the shores of Lake Como, inserted in a post about Lake Como tours from Milan

There are many Lake Como tours available from Milan. Each offers a one-of-a-kind opportunity to explore this enchanting destination.

In this article, we will explore the six best Lake Como tours from Milan , including a trip that takes you across the Italian border to Switzerland. From luxurious cruises to charming villages, these tours will provide you with an in-depth look at the beauty and culture of this stunning region.

👉 What makes me trustworthy? With a decade of experience running this blog and five six years of continuous full-time travel, I have developed expertise in curating top-notch tours and activities. Even more when it comes to Italy, my home country!

I generally use Viator and Get Your Guide to book tours around the world. I especially recommend them for their great cancellation policy, which allows you to cancel most activities up to 24 hours in advance and get a full refund. 

The Best Lake Como Tours from Milan

▶️ Are you ready for a day trip that will leave you breathless? Hop on our luxury bus and travel to the jaw-dropping Lago di Como with this Lake Como, Bellagio and Varenna Tour from Milan. 

Upon reaching the famous destination you’ll be greeted by extravagant villas and lavish gardens, and be spoiled for choice as you admire the unique landscape of the lake from different perspectives. Take a stroll through Como’s city center, visit the neoclassical Villa Olmo, and feel like a celebrity as you glide across the crystal-clear waters on a boat. 

You’ll also visit the colorful and charismatic villages of Bellagio and Varenna, with their narrow cobblestoned streets and picturesque surroundings. 

📝 This tour includes : Roundtrip transportation, a guide, a walking tour in Como, a 1-hour cruise on the lake, and a visit to Bellagio and Varenna. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

▶️ Discover the picturesque beauty of Lake Como on a full-day Lake Como Tour from Milan . Explore the charming city of Como on a guided tour, wandering around its historic center and picturesque streets. 

Admire the exquisite villas and gardens along the lakeshore, and take a two-hour cruise toward the famous Bellagio Island, marveling at the stunning Alpine and Mediterranean scenery, if you’re visiting in the summer. If you’re there in the winter, you’ll take a funicular to Brunate village instead, from where you’ll enjoy panoramic views over Como.  

📝 This tour includes : Transportation, a guide, a walking tour around Como, and a lake cruise or funicular ride depending on the season. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

Lake Como & Switzerland in One Day from Milan

▶️ Explore the best of Switzerland and Italy in just one day on a small-group Bellagio, Lugano, and Lake Como Day Trip from Milan. Accompanied by a friendly, informative guide you’ll enjoy a scenic ride toward Lugano, your Swiss destination of the day. 

Situated at the foot of the Alps, it features gorgeous views and offers a great shopping and cultural scene. You’ll have free time to wander around on your own, and then get back on the coach to head to your next destination: Bellagio, also known as the ‘‘Pearl of Lake Como’’.  

Shop, enjoy the local cuisine, and take in the scenery of this beautiful town before you leave for your last stop of the day: Lake Como. There you’ll get to cruise along the lake, passing by fabulous attractions such as James Bond’s villa and George Clooney’s Italian home. 

📝 This tour includes : Transportation, a guide, lake cruise, and free time in Bellagio and Lugano. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

▶️ Escape the hustle and bustle of the city with a scenic St. Moritz and Lake Como Day Tour from Milan. You’ll experience the beauty of Lake Como on a morning private boat cruise, and take in the views of charming villages such as Bellagio and Varenna, and the famous Villa Balbianello. 

Continue your journey to St. Moritz, passing through the Maloja route with stunning landscapes, and enjoying some free time to explore the glamorous resort. Then, hop aboard the famous Bernina Red Train, crossing the Swiss Alps in style. 

📝 This tour includes : Transportation, a guide, headphones, a lake cruise, train tickets, and a walking tour in St. Moritz. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

Private Tour To Lake Como from Milan

Embark on a hassle-free, private Milan to Lake Como Tour to marvel at the striking sights of the glamorous Italian vacation spot with your own group. Explore Villa Balbianello, famous for its appearance in the Star Wars films, or check out the beautiful Villas Carlotta and Melzi. 

You’ll also enjoy a private boat ride to Bellagio, where you’ll be on your own to explore and dine. This private tour is ideal for spending a luxurious day out without worrying about transfers or strangers and getting to customize your itinerary. The tour accommodates groups of up to 8 people. 

Private Tour: Lake Como From Milan with Private Driver and Boat

📝 This private tour from Milan to Lake Como includes : Hotel pick-up and drop-off, boat tickets, all transfers, and a customizable itinerary. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

Limited Time? A Half-Day Trip to Lake Como from Milan

Discover the breathtaking scenery and captivating architecture of Italy’s most fashionable lake town on this half-day Tour to Lake Como from Milan . Marvel at the historic landmarks in the elegant city center, stroll through traditional shops and upscale boutiques and take in the stunning lakeside promenade as you enjoy a four-hour guided tour of Lake Como. 

You’ll also visit the majestic Cathedral, the Romanesque Sant’ Abbondio Church, and the ornate garden of Villa Olmo for incredible views of the lake and town. With included round-trip train tickets, you can then stay as long as you wish before returning to Milan, making the most of your time there. 

Half-Day Lake Como Discovery Tour from Milan

📝 This tour includes : Train tickets, and a guide. ➥ BOOK IT HERE

👉 I hope you can find the perfect tour for your needs. If you’re looking for a different kind of tour, check out my very comprehensive list of the best Milan tours – there you can find anything from bike tours, to walking tours, and other great day trips.

Tours from Milan to Lake Como FAQs

In my opinion, the best Milan to Lake Como tours are the following:  • Lake Como, Bellagio and Varenna Tour • Milan to Como Day Trip • Bellagio, Lake Como, and Lugano from Milan

Lake Como is 53 miles (85 km) from Milan. 

It is possible to visit Switzerland and Lake Como from Milan in a single day if you join a tour that will help you make the most of your time. These are the ones I recommend:  • Lugano, Lake Como and Bellagio Tour from Milan • St. Moritz and Lake Como Day Tour

Yes, you can certainly visit Lake Como with your own groups of friends or family with this Private Milan to Lake Como Tour , which accommodates up to 8 people. 

Stefania Guglielmi

Stefania Guglielmi is the founder of Every Steph. Originally from Bologna, Italy, she's been traveling full-time since 2016 and has visited over 50 countries across 6 continents. She believes sustainable travel and luxury travel can go hand in hand and has been advocating for responsible tourism since 2014. Stefania's advice and travel experiences have been featured in important publications such as Business Insider, Refinery29, and Yahoo Money.

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kate storm and ranger storm sitting on a bench overlooking lake como surrounded by flowering trees in bellagio, one of the best stops on a day trip to lake como from milan italy

How to Take the Perfect Day Trip to Lake Como From Milan (By Train or Tour!)

Hoping to take a day trip to Lake Como from Milan, but find yourself overwhelmed by all the options?

From the dozens of possible towns and villas to visit to deciding whether or not you want to book a day tour to Lake Como, planning the perfect Lake Como day trip can be a bit of a challenge!

It only takes one glance at stunning photos and videos from places like Bellagio and Villa del Balbianello, though, to remember why it’s just so tempting to visit.

Luckily, Lake Como (in Italian, Lago di Como ) is a very doable day trip from Milan!

While you won’t be able to see all (or even most) of Lake Como in a day, you’ll walk away with a great taste of what makes this stunning mountainous lake such an enduringly popular destination.

Here’s how to plan the perfect day trip to Lake Como from Milan, based on our personal travel experiences in northern Italy!

Table of Contents

Where is Lake Como in Italy?

How to travel from milan to lake como by train + ferry, pros + cons of booking a lake como tour from milan, the best things to do on a milan to lake como day trip, 2 sample one day lake como itinerary itinerary ideas, tips for visiting lake como from milan, italy, faq for visiting lake como from milan, map of lake como day trip destinations, read more about visiting northern italy.

kate storm in shorts and a sunhat overlooking lake como from a rocky beach

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First things first: where exactly is Lake Como, anyway? And how do you find the most popular towns and villas along this gigantic, confusingly-laid-out lake?

Here’s the most general answer: Lake Como is located about an hour north of Milan and is part of Italy’s Lombardy region.

Parts of Lake Como are located fairly close to the border with Switzerland, but the lake is contained entirely within Italy.

small boats exploring lake como with pink flowers in the foreground

Lake Como is famously shaped like an upside-down “Y”, with the northern branch generally referred to as Colico, the southwestern branch as Como, and the southeastern branch as Lecco.

The city of Como is located at the far southwestern corner of the lake, and the town of Varenna is located further north along the Lecco (southeastern) side of the lake.

Bellagio, nicknamed the “Pearl of Lake Como”, is located where the 3 branches of the lake meet, and is realistically the furthest northern point that most day trips to Lake Como will reach.

If that all sounds confusing, don’t worry–we’ve included a downloadable map of Lake Como with the most popular day trip destinations marked at the bottom of this blog post.

town of bellagio italy with lake como to the left and purple flowers in the foreground, a fantastic italy summer vacation destination

In this Lake Como day trip guide, I’m going to focus on the two most common methods of travel between Milan and Lake Como for first-time visitors: train and organized day tour.

Technically, you can take the bus to Lake Como from Milan as well, or even drive yourself, but neither of those options is practical for the majority of travelers planning a day trip.

And, of course, when I mention train… I do in fact mean train + ferry, as the train can only get you as far as your first stop!

When it comes to your starting point, though, here are the easiest routes:

kate storm and ranger storm on the trenord train platform in como italy

Step 1: Take a train to Lake Como from Milan.

Traveling from Milan to Lake Como via train means taking a regional route, which means there’s no real need to book your train tickets in advance.

Prices are fixed for these routes, and they have an open seating plan.

However, for checking train schedules and planning your route, Omio (our favorite train ticket aggregate) comes in handy!

Train From Milan to Varenna

Taking the train from Milano Centrale to Varenna-Esino takes about an hour and whisks you right to town!

From the train station, you’re a quick, easy, downhill walk away from the water and the ferry station (just follow the crowds).

When you’re ready to leave Varenna, you can hop a ferry to Bellagio and (if you take the fast ferry–more on that later) you can be in Bellagio in about 15 minutes.

crowded train platform in varenna italy, a common stop on a day trip to lake como from milan italy

Train From Milan to Como

For an even shorter route, take a train from Milan to either Como Nord Lago or Como S. Giovann i–both stations are within walking distance of the historic center of the city!

Traveling to Como S. Giovanni takes about 40 minutes via train while heading to Como Nord Lago takes closer to an hour.

Keep in mind that not all trains along these routes leave from Milano Centrale, so pay close attention to what train station your ticket leaves from!

Once you’re done exploring Como, a logical next stop is Bellagio, which is 45 minutes away by the fast ferry (hydrofoil) and more than 2 hours away by the slow ferry (battello).

front facade of the volta museum in como italy, a possible stop on a lake como day trip from milan

Step 2: Hop on a ferry to your next destination(s) along Lake Como.

Most travelers visiting Lake Como on a day trip understandably want to visit more than one town–which for independent travelers often means riding the ferry!

The official Navigazione Laghi website is the perfect place to review the ferry schedule and plan your day.

However, it’s important to note that there are 2 kinds of ferries on Lake Como: hydrofoils, or fast ferries, and battellos, or slow ferries.

Only tickets for the slow ferry can be purchased online in advance–for fast ferry tickets, you’ll need to buy your tickets in person!

Add in the fact that ferries can sell out and that taking the hydrofoil makes for a much easier day trip along some routes, and it’s understandable why it’s important to plan your route and book your ferry tickets early in the day.

This is especially important if you’re visiting Lake Como in the summer !

jeremy storm sitting near the window of a ferry from bellagio to varenna on lake como

Want to make life simple and avoid worrying about navigating trains, ferries, and attractions during your one day in Lake Como?

If so, organized day trips like this can be an excellent value!

This incredibly popular day trip to Lake Como from Milan includes round-trip transportation, a visit to a few villages (including Bellagio), a boat cruise, and a visit to a villa.

… And all of this is accomplished without you having to worry about any planning or navigation!

If you’re flexible about exactly what sightseeing you do on Lake Como but want to make sure you have a relaxing day on the lake, booking an organized day trip is a wonderful option.

Book your day trip to Lake Como today!

View of Lake Como with a staircase leading to the water in the foreground. Italy's lakes are part of one of the best road trips in Italy

Hoping to enjoy several of the best things to do on Lake Como in a day?

While a full outline of the best attractions on the lake includes days (or weeks, if you include hiking) worth of exploration, the options outlined here are among the most popular with daytrippers for very good reason.

Keep in mind that no one day in Lake Como has room for all of these: plan on enjoying around 3, depending on your sightseeing style.

kate storm and ranger storm in bellagio lake como during july in italy

Take a boat tour across Lake Como.

Without a doubt, one of the top ways to enjoy Lake Como is to take a boat tour across it!

If you’re taking a day trip to Lake Como on a budget, the ferries do offer lovely views–but for a chance to get up close and personal with the shore, various villas, and stunning viewpoints, a boat cruise like this is a wonderful option for independent travelers.

(Many organized Lake Como day trips, like this popular one , include a boat cruise as part of their itinerary).

front bow of a wooden sightseeing boat on lake como, one of the best things to do in lake como in a day

Visit a villa.

Lake Como is famous for its opulent villas–some of which you can visit!

During your day trip to Lake Como, consider paying a visit to the gardens of a lakeside villa and basking in the beautiful views.

Some, though not all, villas allow visitors inside as well, though be sure to plan ahead if you hope to step inside (some interiors require a guided tour).

Villa del Balbianello (the Star Wars/James Bond villa) and Villa Carlotta are two of the most famous villas along Lake Como, and both are stunning.

If you hope to visit a villa within a town you’re already planning to explore, Villa Monastero in Varenna, Villa Melzi d’Eril in Bellagio (gardens only), and Villa Olmo in Como are all wonderful options.

view through the arches at villa monastero, a fun destination on a day trip lake como italy

Explore the picturesque village of Bellagio.

Nicknamed the “Pearl of Lake Como”, Bellagio just may be the most iconic village on Lake Como!

Situated at the point where the 3 legs of the lake converge, Bellagio offers plenty of sightseeing and wonderful views.

Don’t skip wandering along the waterfront or climbing the steep hills into town!

At the top of Salita Serbelloni, along Via Giuseppe Garibaldi, you’ll find one of the most famous photo spots in Lake Como.

salita serbelloni bellagio photo spot as seen when exploring the best things to do in bellagio lake como

Check out Varenna.

The colorful, charming small town of Varenna is a perfect Lake Como day trip destination: not only is Varenna one of the best towns on Lake Como to visit, but it’s also one of the easiest to get to!

Direct trains from Milan deliver you right to town, where you can then start exploring immediately.

Be sure to meander along the waterfront, check out the Old Harbor, visit Villa Monastero, and, if you’re up for a bit of a climb, head up to Castello di Vezio for some incredible views!

lake como with a sailboat on it with the village of varenna visible to the right side of the photo

Pay a quick visit to Menaggio.

The tiny village of Menaggio is the third point that, along with Bellagio and Varenna, makes up the “golden triangle” of villages at the heart of Lake Como.

Its gorgeous lakefront and peaceful town center don’t take long to explore, but they’re absolutely beautiful!

And, as a bonus, Menaggio’s historic center is flat–a welcome contrast to the steep hills of Varenna and Bellagio.

flat waterfront promenade in menaggio lake como day trip destination

Explore Como, the largest city on Lake Como.

Como, the lake’s namesake city, sits at the southwest corner of the lake and is an easy addition to a Lake Como day trip!

A bit less picturesque than smaller towns like Varenna, but beautiful in its own way, Como offers gorgeous lake views (especially if you ride the funicular up to Brunate), beautiful churches (don’t miss the Duomo!) and lots of attractions to explore (including Villa Olmo).

Como also happens to be extremely well-connected to Milan by train, making it an easy starting or ending point for your day.

como italy cathedral and clock tower

Hoping to take an independent day trip to Lake Como from Milan?

With so many towns and activities to choose from, there are endless ways to pull it off–but these are two of the most popular itineraries.

Both are extremely doable in a day, especially if you keep an eye on the ferry times!

view of varenna from lake como ferry with a woman taking a photo of the town

Bellagio + Varenna Lake Como Day Trip Itinerary

For an easy day trip to Lake Como that’s light on transportation worries and heavy on charm, consider focusing entirely on Bellagio and Varenna.

Take the train to Varenna, explore the town, and then hop over to Bellagio via hydrofoil.

There, enjoy the best things to do in Bellagio and potentially take a boat cruise before heading back to Varenna and then to Milan.

Speedy sightseers may also squeeze Menaggio in here!

Pros + Cons of This Lake Como Day Trip

Benefits of structuring your day trip this way include spending the bulk of your time in the most popular part of the lake and cutting down on transportation time.

Meanwhile, cons include that this day trip only makes room for a small section of Lake Como.

kate storm in a black dress overlooking lake como bellagio waterfront

Varenna + Bellagio + Como Day Trip Itinerary

Want to plan a Lake Como day trip that involves seeing as much of the lake as possible, without an organized group tour?

Start your day the same way as above, with a train ride to Varenna and exploring the town–but quickly.

From there, head to Bellagio for a quick visit before hopping the hydrofoil to Como.

Keep in mind that the hydrofoil to Como takes 45 minutes, while the slow ferry takes almost 2.5 hours–so it’s important to plan this part well!

Once in Como, explore the attractions and enjoy the sunset over the lake before hopping a train back to Milan.

downtown como italy around sunset

The biggest benefit of structuring your day trip to Lake Como as a loop that starts in Varenna and ends in Como is that you get to see a lot of the lake in one day!

Cons include that you have to be much more careful timing your ferry journeys, and with so much time on the water dedicated to ferry rides, a small boat cruise is hard to fit in.

Of course, the ferries also offer lovely views, so depending on your sightseeing style, this might not be a problem!

view of lake como italy with a ferry in the foreground

When it comes to sightseeing, less is more.

Unfortunately, it’s not possible to visit all the best attractions on Lake Como in one day–not even close!

Rather than be tempted to add on just one more town or villa, consider slowing down, instead: each of Lake Como’s villages have hours (or more) of sightseeing to offer.

And, at the end of the day, admiring views of the lake–from villas, boats, and even just the shore–is one of the absolute best things to do around Lake Como, and you are spoiled for choice when it comes to places to do so.

villa del balbianello, one of the best places to visit in lake como in a day, as seen from the water

Get oriented with the layout of Lake Como before your day trip.

Since planning a Lake Como day trip generally involves multiple stops around the lake, your day will much less confusing if you have a vague idea of where you are in relation to Milan at any given time.

Be sure to reference a map, especially when planning your stops, in order to ensure you’re moving in a logical path.

We’ve included a map at the bottom of this blog post with the most popular Lake Como day trip destinations marked to help get you started!

visitors enjoying a small beach in varenna lake como in summer

Buy your ferry tickets early in the day.

When you arrive at Lake Como on the morning of your day trip, regardless of which town you start in, your next stop should be the ferry desk to buy tickets and plot your route!

This is especially important if you’re enjoying a summer trip to Italy when Lake Como is at its most crowded and some ferries do sell out.

With a limited time frame to work with on a day trip, buying your ferry tickets in the morning and planning your sightseeing stops accordingly can make your day much less stressful (and avoid a potentially lengthy ride back if the hydrofoil you want sells out).

The Navigazione Laghi website is great for planning your day but doesn’t allow you to buy hydrofoil (aka fast ferry) tickets online.

travelers standing in line waiting to board a ferry in bellagio italy

Know your battello from your hydrofoil.

When it comes to taking the ferry around Lake Como, you’ll want to keep an eye on more than just the timetable!

A battello is a standard slow ferry, and while peaceful, takes much longer than a hydrofoil.

A hydrofoil is a much faster ferry option.

Technically, you can board either boat to get from place to place, but on a day trip, you’ll need to be aware of which boat you’re boarding!

For example, to travel from Bellagio to Como takes more than 2 hours on the battello, and 35-40 minutes via hydrofoil.

We recommend using the Navigazione Laghi website (the company that operates the ferries) to check timetables and sketch out your day.

view of lake como town as seen from a ferry

If you want to enjoy lunch overlooking the lake, do your research and make reservations!

If your dream Lake Como day trip includes a gorgeous lunch overlooking the lake, then you’ll definitely want to plan in advance!

First, be sure to research restaurants of your choice: while there are lovely restaurants on the water, there are also plenty of tourist traps.

And second, make reservations as soon as you can commit to dates, especially if you want a table right against the water!

Well-reviewed restaurants in ideal locations like La Terrazza Lake Como do book up in advance.

plates of pasta on a picturesque restaurant terrace in lake como day trip from milan

Consider whether you want to take a small boat tour.

Taking a small boat tour is easily one of the best things to do in Lake Como!

This can take many forms, either by signing up for a group tour, signing up for a private boat tour with a captain , or even (for those who know how to drive boats) renting a boat yourself .

The essential thing all these options have in common, though, is that small speedboats offer phenomenal sightseeing opportunities on Lake Como that allow you to get up close with famous spots (like George Clooney’s villa) from the water, as well as simply enjoy the sunshine and impeccable views.

wooden speedboat cruising across lake como, a fun addition to a day trip from milan to lake como

With only one day in Lake Como to work with, though, there’s also no doubt that boat tours eat into your sightseeing time, and the ferries offer beautiful views as well (though not nearly as decadent of an experience).

Small boat tours can last as little as an hour or as long as a full day, but 2-3 hours is fairly common.

One of the perks of signing up for a Lake Como day trip like this is that boat cruises are often included as part of your transportation around the lake, rather than relying on ferries–a chance to enjoy the best of both worlds!

view of lake como italy

Can you take a day trip to Lake Como from Milan?

Yes, absolutely!

Lake Como is one of the best day trips from Milan and is very popular with travelers from around the world.

Is it worth going to Lake Como for one day?

Yes, it’s definitely worth taking a day trip to Lake Como!

While you can’t see all, or even most, of Lake Como in one day, the beauty of visiting Lake Como is that it’s not really a destination about checking off museums or viewpoints–simply being there is a big part of the experience.

For that reason, even with one day in Lake Como, you’re bound to walk away feeling like you enjoyed a wonderful sample of what the area has to offer.

And, since it only takes about an hour to reach Lake Como from Milan, it’s a very doable day trip!

selfie of kate storm and jeremy storm on the shore of lake como italy

Do you need a tour to visit Lake Como from Milan?

You definitely don’t need a tour to take a day trip to Lake Como from Milan, but you might find that you’d like to take one!

Self-planning a Lake Como day trip is very doable and perfect for independent travelers, but it also involves a lot of time management: checking train schedules and comparing them to ferry schedules, knowing whether you’re boarding a fast or slow ferry, always being aware of your next move, and making sure any tours or attractions you visit fit into your schedule.

Popular organized day tours like this offer a wonderful overview of Lake Como with no stress, and for those hoping to enjoy a boat cruise as part of their day trip, also offer great value for money!

Book your day trip to Lake Como from Milan today!

swams swimming away from the camera near the shore of lake como italy

How long does it take to get from Milan to Lake Como?

Generally speaking, plan to spend about an hour traveling from Milan to Lake Como.

That can vary a bit depending on the method of transportation you choose and what town you choose for your first destination, but it’s a good rule of thumb to plan around.

Is there a direct train from Milan to Lake Como?

Yes, there are many direct trains from Milan to Lake Como–with the caveat that “Lake Como” isn’t exactly a single place, and you won’t find any train stations named that!

One of the most popular train routes for travelers planning a day trip from Milan to Lake Como includes taking a train from Milano Centrale to Varenna-Esino (located in Varenna and within walking distance of the ferry).

For day trips starting in the city of Como, taking the train from Milano Centrale to Como S. Giovanni or Como Nord Largo (both located in the city of Como and convenient for day trippers) are two other popular options.

downtown como italy with church visible at the end of a small street

Is Lake Como walkable?

Yes and no.

The most popular places to visit in Lake Como on a day trip, such as Bellagio, Como, Menaggio, and Varenna, are all walkable within themselves.

However, they are definitely not within walking distance of each other!

In other words, you definitely need to plan on additional transportation–ferries, a private boat tour, trains, or some combination thereof, in order to pull off the perfect Lake Como day trip from Milan.

flowering trees along the waterfront promenade in bellagio italy

What’s the prettiest part of Lake Como for a day trip?

Lake Como is an absurdly beautiful place–it is one of those places whose beauty can’t adequately be captured in photos–so choosing just one place is a big ask!

However, the picturesque “Golden Triangle” villages of Varenna, Bellagio, and Menaggio–plus the water views you can experience ferrying between them–can definitely be counted among the prettiest parts of Lake Como.

kate storm and ranger storm standing on the edge of the water in bellagio, a popular stop on a day trip to lake como from milan italy

We’ve marked this map of Lake Como with the most popular places to visit on the lake for day trippers, including the towns of Bellagio, Varenna, Menaggio, and the city of Como.

We’ve also included 3 of the most iconic villas to visit along Lake Como that aren’t in those towns, Villa del Balbianello (aka the Star Wars/James Bond villa) and Villa Carlotta.

No one day trip to Lake Como from Milan could realistically visit all of these places, of course, but choosing 2-3 of them, plus a boat ride or two along the lake, makes for a fantastic day!

Take This Map With You! Click each highlight to pull up the name of the destination. To save this map to “Your Places” on Google Maps, click the star to the right of the title. You’ll then be able to find it under the Maps tab of your Google Maps account! To open the map in a new window, click the button on the top right of the map.

Planning a trip to Italy soon?

You can  browse our 100+ Italy blog posts here , or check out some more of our Northern Italy travel guides:

  • The Ideal One Day in Milan Itinerary (+ Last Supper Details!)
  • 15 Best Things to Do in Bellagio, Italy (The Pearl of Lake Como!)
  • The 23 Best Things to Do in Verona (+ Day Trips)
  • The Ultimate 2 Days in Venice Itinerary
  • 13 Absolute Best Things to Do in Bolzano, Italy

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About Kate Storm

Image of the author, Kate Storm

In May 2016, I left my suburban life in the USA and became a full-time traveler. Since then, I have visited 50+ countries on 5 continents and lived in Portugal, developing a special love of traveling in Europe (especially Italy) along the way. Today, along with my husband Jeremy and dog Ranger, I’m working toward my eventual goal of splitting my life between Europe and the USA.

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Girl With The Passport

8 Best Day Tours from Milan to Lake Como in 2024 and Beyond from an Expert

By: Author Girl with the Passport

Posted on Last updated: December 3, 2023

Categories Europe

If you’re visiting Milan then after sampling some of the best gelatos in Milan , be sure to book one of the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como .

Not only is Lake Como next-level stunning, but it’s well-located near Milan. Therefore, any of these day tours from Milan to Lake Como will be easy to do and well worth your time.

Trust me, I have done these tours/this trip many times. And while you can easily take the train from Milan to Lake Como (tickets are also super cheap), a guided tour is a great option.

It will allow you to enjoy all the area’s highlights in a single day and to learn a bit about the area’s unique history.

So, if you want a stress-free trip or are just short on time then give this epic post a read.

This post may contain affiliate links. Please see my disclosure for more information. As an Amazon Associate, I earn a small commission from qualifying purchases.

Best Day Tours From Milan to Lake Como

My #1 pick 🏆 for the best Lake Como day trip is this Lake Como and Bellagio Boat Cruise . It’s a well-reviewed 10-hour tour where you can see Como, Villa Olmo, Bellagio, and do a cruise on the lake. 🏖️

1. From Milan: Lake Como and Bellagio Private Boat Cruise

A view of the beautiful blue waters of Lake Como with mountains surrounding the lake with boats bobbing in the water. Colorful houses sit on the right shore and flowers line the bottom of the photo. This is what you'll see during one of the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como.

⭐️ Rating: 4.5/5.0 (6971 Reviews) Price: $108.05 per person Duration: 10 hours 📍 Meeting Point : Central Railway Station Operator: AUTOSTRADALE VIAGGI SRL Details: Read more on Get Your Guide Now!

If you’re searching for one of the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como then you can’t beat this tour right here .

Not only is this Lake Como tour well-reviewed and well-priced for a TEN-hour tour, but you’ll get to see all of Lake Como’s major highlights in a single day.

So, get ready for the adventure of a lifetime as you embark on an hour bus ride to Como.

Once there, you’ll go on a guided tour of Como where you’ll see incredible villas before heading to Villa Olmo.

“A memorable day! Breathtaking sites, the walk along Lake Como in Bellagio is a real dream! Simone fulfilled her role very well, friendly, pleasant, attentive to all the passengers, she recommended a restaurant to us in Bellagio where we had a great time…. Thanks again for everything!! I highly recommend this activity! Well done👏👏” Roula ( read more reviews now )

You’ll then go on another guided tour and admire the gardens and neoclassical architecture of Villa Olmo before enjoying a private, hour-long cruise on Lake Como.

Afterward, enjoy a bit of free time in Bellagio before driving for two hours back to Milan.

2. From Milan: Como, Lugano and Bellagio Exclusive Boat Cruise

View of the vibrant orange and yellow homes and churches that line the coast of Lake Como. Mountains sit in the background and you can see all this during one of the best tours to Lake Como from Milan.

⭐️ Rating: 4.4/5.0 (531 Reviews) Price: $136.42 per person Duration: 11 hours 📍 Meeting Point: Piazza Quattro Novembre Operator: VEDITALIA Details: Read more on Get Your Guide Now!

Another easy pick for one of the best tours to Lake Como from Milan is this day trip to Como, Lugano, and Bellagio with an Exclusive Boat Cruise .

After all, this is one of the ONLY best day tours from Milan to Lake Como that actually brings you to Switzerland!

So, grab your passport and get ready for a 90-minute drive to Lugano, Switzerland. You’ll hear tons of cool info along the way and admire sweeping views before reaching the town of Lugano.

You’ll spend a little over 90 minutes here and enjoy a guided tour before having some free time to shop, sample Swiss chocolate, and check out the city center.

Afterward, continue to the village of Cadenabbia (beloved by Zsar Nicholas and Queen Victoria) and get off the bus at Tremezzo since this is where your exclusive boat tour begins.

“The guide was brilliant he kept the group together and made it clear where the meeting points was so no one felt lost and was very friendly and gave great recommendations on places to eat and go when we had free time to explore the trip overall was really good to lots of things to see and many opportunities to take photos was a long day with a lot of travelling but totally worth the price.” Anonymous ( read more reviews now )

Your private vessel will then cruise past exquisite villas and stunning gardens as you glide along Lake Como for around an hour.

Eventually, you’ll arrive at Bellagio which is commonly referred to as the “Pearl of Lake Como”.

In total, you’ll spend around two hours here so that you can have lunch, shop, go on a guided tour, and take some free time to sightsee.

Afterward, head to Como where you’ll have 45 minutes to enjoy the city and to take a lovely walking tour to the Gothic cathedral.

Learn all about this amazing structure from your expert guide before an hour-long bus ride that will take you back to where you started after one of the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como.

Pro Tip: Just be aware of the fact that if water levels change and get too high, the private boat tour will be replaced with public transportation. You also need your passport for this excursion.

3. From Milan: Lake Como, Bellagio, and Varenna Guided Day Trip

Colorful homes sit along the shore of Lake Com with mountains in the background with snow on top. Boats also sit on the water in Bellagio, which can you can see during one of the best Lake Como day tours and the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como.

⭐️ Rating: 4.3/5.0 (1601 Reviews) Price: $108.05 per person Duration: 12 hours 📍 Meeting Point: Varies by tour Operator: Z V SRL Details: Read more on Get Your Guide Now!

This is one of the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como that will take you on a guided day trip to Lake Como, Bellagio, and Varenna .

So, begin your trip with a stop in Como. Go on a guided walking tour to Como Cathedral and explore other local gems before taking a private boat tour across the lake.

“It was an amazing day tour. We were able to visit the towns of Como, Varenna and Bellagio as scheduled. Obviously, if you book this tour you understand that it’s going to involve a lot of travelling (bus and boat) and you also accept that you will not be able to see everything that Lake Como has to offer. The private boat cruise on Lake Como was the highlight of the trip. The weather was lovely the entire day. Monica did an excellent job managing the tour and making sure everyone was at the meeting points on time.” Anonymous ( read more reviews now )

Enjoy live narration and see gorgeous villas and gardens before getting off at Varenna. Walk along the cobblestone streets of this quaint village before boarding another ferry Bellagio.

You’ll have two hours to explore this vibrant town on your own so that you can have lunch, relax, and take in the views before returning to Milan .

4. Italy and Switzerland Day Trip: Lake Como, Bellagio & Lugano from Milan

A panoramic view of the lake in Lugano and the houses that surround the coast of this amazing city.

⭐️ Rating: 4.5/5.0 (981 Reviews) Price: $126.48 per person Duration: 10.5 hours 📍 Meeting Point: Stazione Porta Garibaldi Operator: City Wonders Ltd Details: Read more on Viator Now!

If you don’t mind a long (but fun) day of sightseeing then this is one of the best day trips near Milan for you .

See, after meeting at the city center, you and your tour group will drive through the magnificent Italian Alps before stopping in Lake Como for a magical boat tour.

Stand in awe of celebrity homes (like one owned by George Clooney) as you cruise along the water for 90 minutes.

Learn all about the area’s fascinating history from your expert guide and see where films like Star Wars and James Bond were filmed before disembarking in Bellagio.

“Our tour guide Allesio was excellent. He was friendly, professional, full of information, funny and all around a great guide. We saw some beautiful things. I’ve got a great feel for Lake Como and Lake Lugano. And the weather held up so we were happy. It’s a long day, but I highly recommend it.” Mary ( read more reviews now )

You’ll then have an enchanting hour to visit this magical town on your own before continuing to Lugano.

This idyllic spot sits beneath the Swiss Alps and is often referred to as the “Monte Carlo of Switzerland”.

During your 2-hour visit, explore the church of Santa Maria degli Angioli and see the ‘Passion and Crucifixion’ Renaissance fresco.

Afterward, walk downtown and go shopping for luxury items as well as delish Swiss chocolate.

All in all, this is one of the best day tours from Milan that will give you a beautiful taste of both Switzerland and Italy.

5. Lake Como Day Trip from Milan with a Local: Private & Personalized

⭐️ Rating: 5.0/5.0 (8 Reviews) Price: $431.06 Duration: 8 hours 📍 Meeting Point: Starbucks Centrale Operator: City Unscripted Details: Read more on Viator Now!

If you’re not into group tours and are searching for a top-notch private experience then check out this Lake Como day trip from Milan with a local .

During this incredible experience, you’ll meet your expert guide and hop on the train to Lake Como.

After about an hour, you’ll arrive in Como where you can explore the historic center.

You’ll admire medieval porticoes. walk past stunning neoclassical villas, and visit the Basilica of Sant’Abbondio from the 11th century.

“Illy our your guide was exceptional. It felt like we visitors Lake Como with a friend. She was so knowledgeable and helpful. We saw places that a normal tourist would not have even thought to explore. She even helped us navigate the transportation strike that was pending for our trip to Venice. Highly recommend this trip.” Jospeh ( read more reviews now )

You’ll then catch the train to Varenna, where you can board a local ferry to Varenna, Menaggio, and Bellagio in the summer. Enjoy walking the cobblestone streets and take in sweeping views of the lake.

In the winter, you’ll skip the ferry and take a funicular to Brunate. It’s an awesome town in the mountains that offers epic views of the lake.

Afterward, embark on a beautiful cruise around Lake Como and grab lunch with your host at a local trattoria or osteria. This way you can sample some of the area’s finest cuisine.

6. Half-Day Lake Como Discovery Tour from Milan – Small Group Tour

A view of a historic, yellow villa sitting on the shores of Lake Como.

⭐️ Rating: 5,0/5.0 (20 Reviews) Price: $164.20 per person Duration: 5 hours 📍 Meeting Point: Milano Cadorna Operator: Your Travel Diary Details: Read more on Viator Now!

Short on time? Yeah, who isn’t when there are so many AMAZING places to go in Italy ?

So, if you’re on a tight schedule but want to enjoy one of the best day tours from Milan then consider booking this Half-Day Lake Como Discovery Tour from Milan .

It’s only around 5 hours long but is still one of the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como that includes round trip train tickets from Milan to Como.

Plus, during your 4-hour guided tour you can visit:

  • Duomo in Como
  • Stroll along Via Vittorio Emanuele to the 600-year-old Basilica di Sant’Abbondio.
  • Walk along a lakeside promenade to Villa Olmo before exploring this iconic landmark

But, the best part? After your tour, you can stay as long as you like and explore all that Lake Como has to offer.

“The best element was Renzo Durini, our tour guide. From the minuye we met him thru the end of our tour in Como, he endowed us with an unimaginable amount of history, background and facts related to Como, the multiple cultures and countries that influenced architecture and governance of the city and region. He was helpful advising places to visit beyond the tour and places to eat. He truly was the tour. I highly recommend the tour and securing Renzo if you can.” James ( read more reviews now )

Yeah, this just concludes the guide portion of your tour. And since you have round-trip train tickets, you can stay in Lake Como as long as you like.

Therefore, if you want to learn about the region and see all the major highlights but also love a lot of free time, then book this Lake Como tour now .

7. Best of Lake Como Experience from Milan, Cruise and Landscapes

⭐️ Rating: 4.5/5.0 (114 Reviews) Price: $99.85 per person Duration: 10 hours 📍 Meeting Point: Piazza IV Novembre Operator: Veditalia Details: Read more on Viator Now!

Want to experience the best of Lake Como? Then give this Cruise and Landscapes Experience a try.

See, after getting a quick pick-up in Milan, you’ll stop at the Santuario Madonna del Ghisallo in Magreglio for half an hour.

You’ll explore the church and learn all about its history before heading to the Duomo in Como. You’ll have 30 minutes here before heading to Bellagio for two hours.

“The scenic boat trip from Como to Bellagio was undoubtedly the highlight of the day, culminating in a fantastic lunch in Bellagio. But we did enjoy our brief stop in Como, with its magnificent cathedral, as well as shopping in Bellagio, where there were some quite exclusive shops with leather and silk goods. Very tempting! On the drive back to Milan, we took the scenic route, including spectacular views of Lake Como from the heights above. All in all, a wonderful day out.” Thelma ( read more reviews now )

Plus, you’ll do a fab lake cruise so that you can admire the stunning mountains and enjoy the crystal clear waters that have made this place famous among solo travelers in Italy and families who need a break from the best walking tours in Milan .

It’s also worth noting that you get a tour LEADER and not a tour GUIDE. So, be aware of this before you book since info shared with participants can be limited.

Pro Tip: If you want to visit any churches then you’ll need to have your knees and shoulders covered. So, be sure to dress appropriately before doing one of the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como.

FYI, that dress code applies to both men and women and you could be refused admission.

8. Lake Como: Private Bus from Milan to Visit Como and Bellagio

View of mountains covered in snow and the blue water of Lake Como beneath them by a lakeside promenade with two empty benches. Its something you'll see during one of the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como.

⭐️ Rating: 4.5/5.0 (69 Reviews) Price: $99.85 per person Duration: 9-11 hours 📍 Meeting Point: Piazza IV Novembre Operator: FRIGERIO VIAGGI SRL Details: Read more on Viator Now!

If you’re looking for a slightly more luxurious experience from one of the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como then sign up for this Private Bus Tour to Como and Bellagio .

Enjoy pick-up from central Milan before driving for an hour inside a luxury bus to Como. It’s a stunner of a medieval town with giant squares and exquisite Gothic Cathedrals.

“Great guide. Great bus driver. Organized. Beautiful destination. Highly recommended. On time departure.” Paul ( read more reviews now )

Visit for an hour and take in the view before hopping aboard a local boat and doing a 2.5-hour cruise around Lake Como to Bellagio.

Spend time in this refined town by the lake before going to the upper section of the lake and visiting the Santuario Della Madonna del Ghisallo.

You can check out the Museo Del Ciclismo and the Church of the Virgin Mary before it’s time to make the journey back to Milan.

Best Day Tours from Milan to Lake Como FAQs

1. can you do a day trip to lake como from milan.

Yes! You absolutely can do a day trip to Lake Como from Milan. The best way to do it on your own is to take the train from Milan to Lake Como.

After all, direct trains will take you from Milan to Veranna (an hour trip) and Como (40 minutes) if you only have time to see Lake Como in a day.

2. How Long from Milan to Lake Como?

If you want to drive from Milan to Lake Como then the trip will take around two hours since the journey covers 84 km.

However, if take a train from Milan to Lake Como (as outlined above) then the journey should take between 40 minutes and an hour.

3. Is It Easy to Drive from Milan to Lake Como?

Honestly, the road from Milan to Lake Como is very easy to drive. So, if you have a car and want to visit Lake Como from the south and from Milan then you could definitely drive there.

Just be aware that parking can be tricky. You also don’t need a rental car once in Lake Como if you stay at a centrally located hotel.

4. Lake Como to Milan Train Time

Generally, the train journey from Milan to Como takes around 40 minutes. Train departures start as early as 5:19 am on weekdays while the last train departs at around 10:49 pm.

Therefore, around 45 trains per day depart from Milan and take you to Lake Como. Tickets also cost around $5.73 per ticket.

There you have it! That just about wraps up this guide to the best day tours from Milan to Lake Como.

Did your pick for the best day trip from milan to lake como bellagio make the list if not then hit me up., and if you found this post useful, be sure to join our email list and our facebook group for even more great travel info..

lake como day tours from milan

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lake como day tours from milan

Lake Como Boat Tours

T he perfect marriage of glamour and charm, Lake Como has long been a beacon for couples, families and backpackers alike. Dotted with idyllic cliffside towns, the shores of Lake Como offer incredible dining, lush greenery and unbeatable water views. But for an extraordinary experience you’ll never forget, tour Lake Como’s glittering cobalt waters aboard a sailboat, motorboat or iconic wooden boat. Bask in the warm Italian sunshine. Indulge in a gourmet meal or watch the sunset as you enjoy these Lake Como boat tours from a stunning new perspective. No matter your tastes, interests or budget, there’s a Lake Como boat tour to fit your needs.

Is a Boat Tour on Lake Como Worth It?

While the shores of Lake Como offer some of the region’s most scenic views, tantalizing cuisines and most interesting attractions, a boat tour of Lake Como is the key to a classic Lake Como experience. No matter which tour you choose, you’ll be treated to unparalleled views of Lake Como’s historic cliffside villages, lush mountains and crystalline waters. Be sure to make room in your schedule and budget, because a Lake Como boat tour is well worth every minute and every penny!

Where is the Best Place to Boat on Lake Como?

Lake Como is dazzlingly beautiful, so no matter where you choose to embark on your Lake Como boat tour, you’ll enjoy the fairy-tale scenery that sets Lake Como apart. If you’re visiting Lake Como as a day trip from Milan, a boat tour that departs from the city of Como will be most convenient. It will allow for the most time on the water. If you have more time on your hands, consider embarking in Bellagio. It offers a central location convenient for touring various locations on the lake.

Making a stop in Milan? Check out this itinerary!

How long does it take to tour lake como by boat.

Lake Como boat tours vary in length. You can choose a tour that fits your needs. Many tours will last between 3-4 hours, but a full-day voyage will give you the opportunity to see the sights at your own pace. Or, if you’re short on time, you can rent a boat for as little as an hour!

Romantic Lake Como Boat Tours

On Lake Como, you’ll find romance at every turn. If you’re looking for an unforgettable honeymoon experience – or just a night to remember – there’s a Lake Como boat tour to set the mood. Enjoy a romantic meal and spectacular sunset views. Or, sip bubbly champagne on an intimate, moonlit voyage around the lake. To experience the quieter side of Lake Como, tour aboard a sailboat while you enjoy the incredible scenery – and even more incredible company!

Family-friendly Lake Como Boat Tours

Lake Como may be known for its grand sense of romance, but it’s also a perfect destination for family fun! Most Lake Como boat tours are suitable for families. Consider a fishing excursion for an exciting and authentic Lake Como experience. Often captained by knowledgeable local guides, a specialized fishing tour will highlight the very best fishing spots Lake Como has to offer. Anglers will especially appreciate the area known as the Valtellina, a popular fly-fishing hot spot that attracts anglers from around the world.

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Luxury Lake Como Boat Tours

Lake Como is world-renowned as an elegant and luxurious vacation destination. With fans like George and Amal Clooney, it’s no wonder that travelers flock to Lake Como in search of glitz, glamour and the finer things in life. If you’re among them, reserve an upscale boat tour serving a 3-course gourmet dinner along with wine and swanky cocktails. To recreate that old Hollywood glamour, make like James Bond aboard a classic wooden-paneled vessel, or try a yacht complete with concierge service to cater to your every whim and need. If you’re looking for the best of the best, Lake Como has you covered!

How Much Does a Private Lake Como Boat Tour Cost?

Of course, a destination as beautiful and popular as Lake Como is no stranger to crowds. If you’re looking to get away from it all, a private tour is the perfect solution. Whether you’re looking for a romantic experience or just a reprieve from the crowds, private cruises cater to a variety of interests. They can include fishing, dining and sightseeing. Best of all, these exclusive excursions can be tailored to fit your personal interests and needs.

A private boat tour will, of course, come at a steeper cost. It will depend on the length of cruise, number of guests and itinerary. You’ll find private boat tours can cost anywhere from a few hundred dollars for a shorter tour or into the thousands for longer voyages.

Lake Como Boat Tour on a Budget

While Lake Como has a reputation as a luxurious destination, you can still enjoy a boat tour if you’re on a budget! For just a few euros, you can experience breathtaking views of Lake Como’s cliffside towns aboard the public ferry. For the best views, choose the “slow boat” and enjoy your 2.5 hour journey from the top deck. You’ll even have the opportunity to explore some of Lake Como’s iconic towns, like Bellagio and Varenna. If you have a few more dollars to spare, spring for a sailboat tour captained by a local guide. Additionally, you’ll get a taste of Lake Como’s glitz and glamour for a fraction of the price.

Lake Como may be known for its luxury and extravagance, but you don’t have to be rich and famous to enjoy the culture, history and natural beauty of this magnificent Italian lake. Whether you’re visiting as a day trip from Milan or making Lake Como your primary travel destination, you won’t want to miss out on an iconic Lake Como boat tour.

Are you ready for a Lake Como Boat Tour?

Ready to experience La Dolce Vita for yourself? Contact us here to see how!

The post Lake Como Boat Tours appeared first on Teach Travel Discover .

The perfect marriage of glamour and charm, Lake Como has long been a beacon for couples, families and backpackers alike. Dotted with idyllic cliffside towns, the shores of Lake Como offer incredible dining, lush greenery and unbeatable water views. But for an extraordinary experience you’ll never forget, tour Lake Como’s glittering cobalt waters aboard a...

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6 Day Milan including visit to Verona, Lake Garda, Florence, Pisa, Lake Como, Bellagio, & Lugano.

  • Partially Guided

Places You’ll See

Milan

  • Introduction
  • Day 1 Arrival Milan
  • Day 2 City Sightseeing Milan Hop-on Hop-off Bus
  • Day 3 Tour of Verona and Lake Garda from Milan
  • Day 4 Tour of Florence & Pisa from Milan
  • Day 5 Tour of Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano Switzerland from Milan
  • Day 6 Departure Milan

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What's Included

  • Accommodation

Where You'll Stay

Dates & availability.

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lake como day tours from milan

4 replies to this topic

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Keep in mind the particular shape of the lake

https://www.ideeviaggio.it/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/lago-di-como-mappa.jpg

The most scenic part is the central one, where the lake divides into two branches.

The railway from Milan runs along the entire eastern shore, from Lecco to Colico.

Conversely, on the western shore the railway only touches the city of Como.

lake como day tours from milan

Kinja, I answered in your other thread and wrote there, that your mentioned destination is not a good idea.

So, to your question here: Do you have 3 nights, means only 2 full days, or will you have 3 days, means 4 nights?

I answered in your other thread.

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  • Where to stay in Lake Como? 10 replies
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  • Ferry schedule for Lake Como 4 replies
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Como Hotels and Places to Stay

  • If I want to get married there, what should I know?
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  • It's better to stay in Como or in... (any other village)

IMAGES

  1. Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano Tour

    lake como day tours from milan

  2. Lake Como Day Trip with Boat Tour: from Milan

    lake como day tours from milan

  3. Milan to Lake Como Day Trip & Tour with Bellagio

    lake como day tours from milan

  4. Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano Tour

    lake como day tours from milan

  5. Top Tips for your Trip to Lake Como from Milan

    lake como day tours from milan

  6. Lake Como Day Trip with Boat Tour: from Milan

    lake como day tours from milan

VIDEO

  1. Diary about Travelling

  2. Hiking in Lake Como (Day 3)

  3. The Complete Lake Como tour (Como Lake Cruise + Bellagio+Menaggio)

  4. 4K

COMMENTS

  1. Lake Como Tours and Day Trips from Milan

    From €340/p. Up to 6 ppl. 10 h. A small guided group tour to Lake Como from Milan. It includes private luxury transfer and lunch with a lake view and a visit to one of the most beautiful villas, Villa Olmo. Visit Cernobbio on Lake Como and learn about its extensive history. Enjoy lunch in a beautiful restaurant with a view of Lake Como.

  2. 8 Best Lake Como Tours From Milan (Private, Small-Group & More)

    Tour Overview. Tour Type: Travel by luxury bus from Milan, enjoy a guided walking tour, and a private boat tour of the lake.Free time at various stops. Tour Sights & Stops: Como, Villa Olmo, Bellagio, Varenna, Lake Como; Departure Points: Milan Central Station or Milan Piazza Della Scala/ Piazza Duomo Length: 10 to 11 hours Check Price; Enjoy a full-day trip with walking tours of Como, and the ...

  3. Lake Como and Bellagio Day Trip from Milan

    For a Lake Como day trip from Milan, look no further. A great way to discover the timeless beauty of the Italian lakes, this experience includes a walking tour of the chic lake town of Como plus a Lake Como cruise to see snow-peaked mountains and luxury lakeside villas from the water. In the summer, visit the village of Bellagio for free time to eat and explore. In the winter, take a gondola ...

  4. THE TOP 10 BEST Day Trips from Milan to Lake Como in 2024

    Lake Como & Lugano Day Trip from Milan. 28. Get to the lovely Lake Como and Lugano from Milan on this tour, which offers the opportunity for a cruise across the lake. For two hours, appreciate the view from the boat from the still water. Visit the Como Cathedral, then cross the lake.

  5. Lake Como Day Trip from Milan with a Local: Private & Personalized

    Visit Lake Como and its quaint villages on a full-day tour from Milan. Explore the towns of Varenna, Menaggio, Bellagio, or Brunate. Cross the lake by ferry or take a funicular up to the mountains. Enjoy a personalized experience with a private tour guide. Transportation cost to and from Como, which takes around 1 hour by fast train.

  6. Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano Tour

    Italy & Switzerland in 1 day: Lake Como, Bellagio & Lugano Day Trip from Milan. 4.86. (560 Reviews) 10h 30min. English. Everyday. 08:30. Explore the wonders of Switzerland and Italy on a day excursion to Lugano and Lake Como from Milan. Follow a knowledgeable local guide as you cruise Lake Como on a private sightseeing boat, capturing glimpses ...

  7. Idyllic Lake Como Day Trip from Milan with Boat Tour

    Wear some comfortable shoes and clothes to suit the weather. show more frequently asked questions. Reserve Now $254.25 / per person. Make your day trip to Lake Como from Milan easy and memorable with transportation included and a boat ride to Torno.

  8. From Milan: Small Group Lake Como Day Tour with Boat Cruise

    The tour includes a visit of one of the famous historical villas of Lake Como and visit of Bellagio & Varenna together with your guide. At the end of your trip, take the express train back to Milan together with your guide. The tour will finish at approximately 18:00 in Milan's Central Station. During the winter period (from November till ...

  9. From Milan: Lake Como & Bellagio Day Tour with Luxury Cruise

    17 Polignano a Mare. 18 Palau. 19 La Spezia. 20 Cala Gonone. Embark on a guided excursion from Milan to Lake Como and the towns of Bellagio and Varenna. Discover the region's history and enjoy the picturesque Italian scenery.

  10. Lake Como Day Trip from Milan

    Lake Como day trip from Milan. The tour will begin with your private driver collecting you from your hotel in Milan (another custom location in the area can be agreed) with a luxury sedan or minivan. Discover the beauty of the most elegant and third-largest lake in Italy with its incredible Mediterranean and Alpine scenery, spectacular views ...

  11. 2024 Day tour from Milan: Lake Como & Bellagio with Cruise in a Small

    per adult (price varies by group size) Private Tour: Lake Como From Milan with Private Driver and Boat. 3. Full-day Tours. from. $661.73. per adult (price varies by group size) Italy and Switzerland Day Trip: Lake Como, Bellagio & Lugano from Milan. 389.

  12. From Milan: Lake Como & Bellagio by Bus & Private Boat Tour

    17 Polignano a Mare. 18 Palau. 19 La Spezia. 20 Cala Gonone. Enjoy a full-day trip by bus from Milan to Lake Como. Explore Bellagio, stroll around the vibrant Italian gardens at Villa Olmo, and escape the crowds on a private boat cruise on Lake Como.

  13. Private Full-day Scenic Tour of Como Lake From Milan

    Day tour from Milan: Lake Como & Bellagio with Cruise in a Small-group tour . 2. Rail Tours. from . $308.44. per adult. LIKELY TO SELL OUT* Private Tour to Como and Bellagio from Milan with Boat ride. 2. Full-day Tours. from . $749.69. per adult (price varies by group size) Private Tour: Lake Como From Milan with Private Driver and Boat. 3.

  14. The BEST Day Trip to Lake Como from Milan (Self-Guided!)

    For the route I recommend, you'll need to purchase two sets of one-way train tickets for your day trip to Lake Como from Milan. Milano Centrale to Como San Giovanni; direct trip, about 40 minutes. Varenna-Esino to Milano Centrale; direct trip, about 65 minutes. You should purchase your tickets online from TrenItalia.

  15. Lake Como Day Trip from Milan

    A Milan to Como day trip is made super easy by the direct trains that run to both Varenna and Como. The Milan to Lake Como route is served by the Regionale (a 49 minute direct train) and the faster EuroCity (just a 36 minutes train ride). Throughout the day there are loads of trains to Como San Giovanni from Milano Centrale train station, and ...

  16. Full Day Lake Como, Bellagio, and Lugano from Milan Tour

    Cruise Lake Como. Sail by celebrity villas. The perfect trip from Milan. Upon meeting your guide at 8:30 am at Milan's Porta Garibaldi Train Station, your day begins with a scenic drive to Lugano, where you'll have free time to sip coffee with awe-inspiring views and visit the town's many boutique shops. Then, continue by coach to ...

  17. Milan to Lake Como Full-Day Small-Group Tour with Boat Cruise 2024

    Soak in the romantic alpine scenery of Lake Como without booking a hotel on a small-group day trip from Milan. In just one day, a guide takes you on a classic circuit of the lake's essential villages, from the main hub of Como to beautiful Bellagio and historic Varenna. Reach the shores by comfortable minivan, and then travel between villages by boat for the complete Lake Como experience.

  18. 6 BEST Lake Como Tours from Milan [2024]

    ️ Discover the picturesque beauty of Lake Como on a full-day Lake Como Tour from Milan. Explore the charming city of Como on a guided tour, wandering around its historic center and picturesque streets. Admire the exquisite villas and gardens along the lakeshore, and take a two-hour cruise toward the famous Bellagio Island, marveling at the ...

  19. How to Take the Perfect Day Trip to Lake Como From Milan (By Train or

    In this Lake Como day trip guide, I'm going to focus on the two most common methods of travel between Milan and Lake Como for first-time visitors: train and organized day tour. Technically, you can take the bus to Lake Como from Milan as well, or even drive yourself, but neither of those options is practical for the majority of travelers ...

  20. 8 Best Day Tours from Milan to Lake Como in 2024

    Generally, the train journey from Milan to Como takes around 40 minutes. Train departures start as early as 5:19 am on weekdays while the last train departs at around 10:49 pm. Therefore, around 45 trains per day depart from Milan and take you to Lake Como. Tickets also cost around $5.73 per ticket.

  21. How to Plan the Perfect Day Trip to Lake Como

    Como to Varenna and Bellagio by Boat. From Como, you can take a slow boat (batallo) or a fast boat (hydrofoil) to get to Varenna and Bellagio. The hydrofoil takes 45 minutes to one hour to travel from Como to Bellagio and/or Varenna. The slow boat takes up to two to three hours to travel from Como to Bellagio and/or Varenna.

  22. 6-Day Milan, Como & Switzerland Tour

    SMALL GROUP TOUR: Explore picturesque northern Italy and the Swiss Alps on this 6-day small group tour from Milan. Enjoy an included boat trip on beautiful Lake Como, explore the cultural melting pot of Lugano, and wander around the 'Garden City' of Varese. Marvel at the famous Matterhorn peak on a train ride, discover the stunning town of ...

  23. Lake Como Boat Tours

    If you're visiting Lake Como as a day trip from Milan, a boat tour that departs from the city of Como will be most convenient. It will allow for the most time on the water.

  24. Half-Day Lake Como Discovery Tour from Milan

    From Milan - Alpine Wonders Lunch at Diavolezza and Bernina Train. from $208.52. Milan, Lombardy. Tour to Como, Lugano, Bellagio and exclusive cruise from Milan. 37. from $131.29. Milan, Lombardy. Visit of Verona and Lake Garda. Full day tour from Milan.

  25. 6 Day Milan including visit to Verona, Lake Garda, Florence, Pisa, Lake

    Start and end in Milan! With the Explorer tour 6 Day Milan including visit to Verona, Lake Garda, Florence, Pisa, Lake Como, Bellagio, & Lugano., you have a 6 days tour package taking you through Milan, Italy and 7 other destinations in Italy. 6 Day Milan including visit to Verona, Lake Garda, Florence, Pisa, Lake Como, Bellagio, & Lugano. includes accommodation in a hotel as well as an expert ...

  26. Day trip to Milan?

    Hello, We land in Milan at 1pm and have 3 days planned at Lake Como.I want to see the Last Supper and the Duomo in Milan. Is it better to come back to Milan for a day drip on 2nd or 3rd day or would you go straight to the points of interest in Milan the day you land and then head to Como?We will be traveling with a 8 and 4 year old so trying to not tire them out.