In the northern part of Lake Como, along the eastern shore, you will find Calico. It is the most important town in the area. It is set in the Monte Legnone Mountains which roll down to open, sandy beaches. Kite and windsurfers will be happy to know that the Breva wind blows well here. You will find many apartments available to rent to suit all tastes, including those on a family, surfing, or hiking holiday.
This area normally has mild weather. The Mediterranean type climate means that both tropical and sub-tropical plants bloom here year-round. On average the daily temperatures go from a low of only 13 °C in December. This is due to the lake keeping the temperature higher than usual in the winter months. In July temperatures reach a very pleasant 30 °C with water temperatures averaging about 24 °C. This makes it an ideal location for water sports holidays.
How to get to Colico
From Milan Central Station take the train for Colico/Sondrio, change at Lecco for the train to Colico.
The town can also be reached from Como by ferry services that serve the northern end of the lake. If you would like to get there quicker and don’t mind paying a little more then opt for the Servizi Rapidi. This service stops less often and uses quicker ships so the journey takes about one hour thirty minutes as compared to the three hours the ferry takes. There are also boat connections to Lecco.
Best time to visit
Colico is mainly a summer resort. Due to the mild climate and warm waters of the lake it is an excellent place to bathe and enjoy other water sports. It is best to go between May and July.
What to do in Colico
Biking and Trekking
Colico is situated in the foothills of Monte Legnone and there are numerous trails available for those who like to bike or trek through the stunning scenery. Guided bike trips are available up Mount Legnoncino, to Fort Montecchi and you can take a combined bike and kayak trip in the nature reserve in Piano Di Spagna.
If you fancy viewing the lovely scenery from horseback then the El Picadero center in Colico offers both lessons and rides.
As you might imagine both windsurfing and kitesurfing are very popular here. The beach is long and open, the water inviting and the Breva gives power to your sails. he conditions are so good that the Italian stage of the Kitesurf world championships takes place at Colico each year. If you are experienced and don’t want to haul all your gear, then you can easily hire what you need locally. For those with a little experience or who want to try it for the first time then classes are on offer from surfing centers.
If you prefer something somewhat more sedate then you have found a superb location for sailing. As with surfing you can take lessons or hire equipment locally.
What to see in Colico
There are many local sites worth visiting. Among the most important are:
This is the only surviving Italian World War I fort. Built between 1911 and 1914 it features some innovative architectural and technical structures for its time. The principal among these are the four big guns that have 14km range.
Dating from the Middle Ages these were defensive structures. Two of these lookout towers are still visible on the northern Montecchio hill and a further one, the Curcio tower, has been converted into a farmhouse.
The Abbey of Piona
This is one of Lombardy’s most famous Romanesque monuments. It dates from the mid-11th Century and exhibits many works of art including two lion-shaped marble holy water fonts close to the entrance, and a 16th Century fresco depicting Christ’s appearance to the Virgin Mary.
As would be expected in Italy, there is excellent food on offer from the local restaurants and trattoria.