Unveiling the Distance: Your Guide from Lake Maggiore to Lake Como

Ever wondered about the distance between two of Italy’s most stunning lakes, Lake Maggiore and Lake Como? You’re not alone! These aquatic gems, nestled in the Italian Alps, are a must-visit for any travel enthusiast. Their proximity to each other often raises the question: just how far apart are they?

In this article, we’ll shed light on the exact distance between Lake Maggiore and Lake Como. We’ll also delve into the best ways to travel between these two picturesque locales. So, whether you’re a seasoned traveler or a curious geographer, stay tuned for an informative journey through Italy’s breathtaking landscape.

Key Takeaways

  • Lake Maggiore and Lake Como are two of Italy’s most stunning lakes, with the distance between them being approximately 83 kilometers by car and about 3 hours by public transportation.
  • Lake Maggiore, the second-largest lake in Italy, is known for its vast surface area, captivating Alpine scenery, and the charming Borromean Islands.
  • Lake Como, the deepest lake in Italy, offers a stunning landscape with grand villas, quaint villages, and has a strong celebrity prestige due to frequent celebrity visits.
  • Travel between the lakes can be made comfortably by car with a journey time of around 1 hour and 30 minutes, or by public transportation involving trains and buses with a total transit time of approximately 3 hours.
  • Both Lake Maggiore and Lake Como have diverse experiences combining history, culture, and natural beauty awaits, with attractions like the Borromeo Islands in Lake Maggiore and impressive villas such as Villa Carlotta in Lake Como.
  • The best time to visit these Italian lakes is between late spring (April) to early fall (September), when the weather is moderate and most tourist attractions are open. Additionally, the local cuisine, including ‘Risotto alla Milanese’ and ‘Torta Miascia’, add to the overall travel experience.

Geography of Italian Lakes

Italy’s landscape boasts a copious number of lakes, each with a unique geography and beauty. Two prime examples in this area are Lake Maggiore and Lake Como. Ensuring a deeper understanding of these lakes’ geographical characteristics clarifies their proximity, complementing the intent to decipher the distance between them.

Lake Maggiore: A Brief Overview

Situated cover across the Piedmont and Lombardy regions, Lake Maggiore spreads with a vast length of 65 km, predominantly from south to north. Standing as the second-largest lake in Italy and the largest in the southern canton of Ticino, Switzerland, it accounts for a surface area of about 213 square kilometers.

Lake Maggiore doesn’t merely pride itself on size. Embedded amid captivating Alpine scenery, its charm emanates from the Borromean Islands—Isola Bella, Isola Madre, and Isola dei Pescatori. Known for their luxurious baroque palaces and picturesque gardens, they add allure to Lake Maggiore’s diverse panorama.

Lake Como: A Natural Marvel

A bit south in Lombardy region, lies Lake Como, shaped remarkably like an inverted “Y”. It claims the title of Italy’s deepest lake, reaching a depth of approximately 410 meters. While significantly smaller than Lake Maggiore in terms of surface area—146 square kilometers—it surpasses in orographic distinction and celebrity prestige.

A staple for its stunning landscape, Lake Como profusely exhibits grand villas, quaint villages, and gothic churches. Its streaks of fame stretch beyond geography; celebrity affiliations with George Clooney, Madonna, and Richard Branson have amplified its international reputation.

Calculable distances between these lakes matter not only in kilometers but also in the rich contextual breadth they incorporate. Comprehending their geography places you on a path to explore these Italian wonders, you’re one step closer to understanding the space between Lake Maggiore and Lake Como.

Journey Between The Lakes

Transitioning from Lake Maggiore’s picturesque Borromean Islands and Lake Como’s dazzling orographic distinction isn’t as complicated as it might sound. While relatively close on the map, the journey does entail unique experiences each mode of travel offers, allowing you to absorb the diverse landscapes of Northern Italy.

By Car: Navigating the Distance

Opting for a personal car ride does promise comfort and flexibility. You can plan your route, decide your pace, and make impromptu stops to admire the Italian scenery. For this route, maps point towards the A8 and A9 highways, the distance being approximately 83 kilometers, translating into the driving time of around 1 hour and 30 minutes.

A breakdown of your route follows:

  • Depart from Lake Maggiore: Begin your journey at Arona, a charming town that nestles along Lake Maggiore’s shores.
  • Via the A8: Enter onto the A8 highway, commonly known as “Autostrada dei Laghi”.
  • Transition to the A9: Proceed to the A9, coined “Autostrada dei Laghi” near Sesto Calende.
  • Arrive at Lake Como: Reach your destination at Como, a city that snugs Lake Como’s southwestern tip.

By Public Transport: Train and Bus Options

Contrarily, going by public transportation begins to align with the option of letting professionals assume the reins of navigation, affording you the freedom to sit back and relish the journey. Your public transport route can incorporate both trains and buses, the total transit time generally stretching to 3 hours.

Here’s how you can maneuver the trip:

  • Board the Train at Stresa railway station: Take a train from Stresa, situated at Lake Maggiore, and get off at Milan’s Central Station.
  • Ride the Milan Metro: Switch to Milan’s Subway System, Line 2 (Green), towards Abbiategrasso, and alight at Cadorna Station.
  • Final Train to Como: From Cadorna, catch a train to Como—Como Nord Lago station being your final stop.

Remember, train and bus schedules often undergo changes. It’d serve your interests to check the current timetables before embarking on your journey.

Tourist Experiences at Lake Maggiore and Lake Como

After arriving at your destination, it’s time to explore the tourist experiences waiting for you at the Italian lakes. At both Lake Maggiore and Lake Como, you’ll find an array of attractions.

Attractions at Lake Maggiore

Experience the allure of Lake Maggiore, a gem nestled between Italy and Switzerland. It offers attractions such as the Borromeo Islands—three small islands and two islets in the western arm of the lake. Isola Bella, the most known of the islands, flaunts a stunning 17th-century palace, curated gardens, and colorful peacocks strutting their stuff. Isola Madre and Isola dei Pescatori are equally impressive, each with a unique character.

For culturally inclined, take a visit to Rocca di Angera, a historic castle that houses a Doll Museum and provides panoramic views. You’ll also discover the grandeur of Villa Pallavicino with a huge park filled with freely roaming animals.

Attractions at Lake Como

Lake Como attracts many with its blend of natural and cultural attractions. Marvel at the impressive villas dotting the shoreline including Villa Carlotta with its elegant garden, and Villa del Balbianello, famous for its ornate interiors and a frequent filming location.

Boat tours on the lake offer picturesque views of small villages nestled on the shores, such as Bellagio, referred to as the “Pearl of the Lake”. The Como Cathedral, a stunning piece of architecture, forms the perfect backdrop for your Como adventure.

Hiking enthusiasts can head to the old trails that take you through landscapes filled with history, culture, and breathtaking vistas. The trails of Monte Grona and Monte Tremezzo are worth trekking.

In both Lake Maggiore and Lake Como, you’ll find diverse experiences combining history, culture, and natural attractions that captivate every traveler. Remember to pack your camera; you wouldn’t want to forget these truly memorable experiences.

Making the Most of Your Trip

Understanding how to optimize your visit to Lake Maggiore and Lake Como can greatly enhance your experience. This includes knowing the best time to visit and the local delicacies you can’t afford to miss.

Best Time to Visit

Timing your trip is crucial if you aim at experiencing Lake Maggiore and Lake Como in their prime. The period from late spring (April) to early fall (September), considered as the “peak season,” might be your best bet. It’s during this period that you encounter moderate weather, with temperatures fluctuating between 20°C (68°F) and 30°C (86°F). Additionally, most attractions open their doors to tourists at this time, and you can enjoy various activities such as boating and hiking with less risk of inclement weather.

Local Delicacies to Try

Embracing the flavors of local culinary delights always adds richness to your travel experience. With a deep tradition of delicious regional foods, the area around Lake Maggiore and Lake Como does not disappoint.

First on the list, indulge in Risotto alla Milanese. This creamy rice dish imbued with saffron and butter is the perfect introduction to Italian cuisine.

Next, savor the traditional fish dishes from the region, like Missultin e Polenta. It consists of preserved shad fish cooked with garlic and olive oil, served with warm polenta, offering a delightful taste of Lake Como’s bounty.

Finally, you cannot leave without tasting ‘Torta Miascia’, a sweet cake made with dried and fresh mixed fruits typical around Lake Como, that provides a refreshing finale to any meal.

Tips for Planning Your Lake Visits

Accommodation Choices

Crafting a memorable visit to Lake Maggiore and Lake Como pivots on picking suitable accommodation. A plethora of options abound to cater to varying travel preferences and budgets. If luxury is your travel mantra, options like Grand Hotel Fasano at Lake Garda and Villa d’Este at Lake Como are ideal selections. Those geared towards budget travel, find solace in hostels like Hostel Veronique or Lake Como Hostel La Primula. Lean towards authenticity? Agritourism ventures like Agriturismo Runchee offer you an experience steeped in Italian tradition.

Day Trip or Overnight Stay?

Debate often rages between making your lake journey a day trip or an overnight stay. This decision factors in multiple parameters, travel time, travel cost, and your personal preference topping the list. Day trippers experience a bite-sized introduction to the lakes’ elegance, appreciating iconic sights like Borromeo Islands or Villa Carlotta before heading back. Yet, overnight stays unlock profound engagement, allowing you to immerse yourself in the local traditions, savor regional cuisine like Torta Miascia, and indulge in the tranquility offered by the lake surroundings. The optimal choice hinges on your personal agenda and constraints. An overnight stay fits the bill for comprehensive exploration, while a day trip suits those seeking a compact experience.


So, you’ve got a clear idea of what awaits you at Lake Maggiore and Lake Como. You’re now aware of the distance and travel options between these two stunning Italian gems. You’ve also got a glimpse of the attractions, local delicacies, and accommodation choices to suit your budget. Whether you decide on a day trip or an overnight stay, you’re sure to create unforgettable memories. Remember, the best time to visit is from late spring to early fall. So pack your bags, and get ready to immerse yourself in the history, culture, and natural beauty of Lake Maggiore and Lake Como. Happy traveling!

Traveling between Lake Maggiore and Lake Como offers a scenic journey through Italy’s picturesque lake district. The two lakes are about 91 kilometers apart, and the drive between them takes approximately 1.5 hours, offering stunning views along the way. For those preferring public transport, Rome2Rio provides comprehensive options for trains and buses, ensuring a convenient trip. Exploring the cultural and natural beauty of both lakes, including the Borromean Islands on Lake Maggiore and the historical villas on Lake Como, makes for an unforgettable experience in Northern Italy.

Frequently Asked Questions

What geography does the article cover?

The article covers the geography of Italy’s lakes, specifically focusing on Lake Maggiore and Lake Como.

What transportation options does the article discuss?

The article discusses various transportation options to travel between Lake Maggiore and Lake Como, although it doesn’t provide specific details.

What attractions are covered for Lake Maggiore?

For Lake Maggiore, the article mentions attractions like the Borromeo Islands, Rocca di Angera, and Villa Pallavicino.

What attractions are mentioned for Lake Como?

Lake Como’s noted attractions include Villa Carlotta, Villa del Balbianello, and boat tours to villages like Bellagio. Hiking trails on Monte Grona and Monte Tremezzo are also mentioned.

What local delicacies are recommended?

Local delicacies recommended include Risotto alla Milanese, Missultin e Polenta, and Torta Miascia to enhance your experience.

Does the article suggest which is the best time to visit?

Yes, the article suggests that the best time to visit Lake Maggiore and Lake Como is late spring to early fall.

What accommodations does the article suggest?

A range of accommodations is suggested from luxury options like the Grand Hotel Fasano to more budget-friendly hostels.

Does the blog suggest making the lake journey a day trip or an overnight stay?

The article touches on the debate between making the lake journey a day trip or an overnight stay. Both options have their benefits depending on travel time, cost, and personal preferences.