There is nothing like sitting in an old town square, next to a lake and slowly watching life go by. You can feel the relaxation seep through you in waves as you slowly exhale and soak in the sun.
I have heard about Lake Como over the years, and somehow expected it to be more of a scene given all the celebrity sightings and talk of secret Mafia meetings. It was nothing as I imagined. I did not see George fly by in a speed boat, or anyone from the Versace Villa sit and sip an Aperol Spritz in the town square, which by the way, is my new favorite summer drink. It looks a bit like orange Kool-Aid, and I couldn't get over that I saw absolutely everyone drinking it from wine glasses? It took me awhile to figure out exactly what it was (Prosecco with Campari), but by the end of the trip it had become my go-to drink.
The main center of this idyllic town was not crowded, but still quite active with people enjoying local cafes or shopping. Perhaps it was the time of year? I kept hearing that it was unseasonably warm. It was in the high 70s while we were there, but apparently it is typically in the low 60s this time of year which might be still a bit cold for lake life. Whatever the reason, we seemed to hit this little town at just the right moment in time. Everything was in bloom, the weather was perfect and there was room to breathe.
Across the water from the main square, you can see the villas of the aristocrats scale up the hillside. Lake Como has been a popular retreat for the wealthy since Roman times, and you could feel that in the architecture. A stroll through the narrow back streets that surround the square open up to a secondary square with the local cathedral built in 1396 in a Gothic style. It was simple, yet stunning, and nowhere near as ornate as other European cities. But it commanded the skyline giving it a beautiful focal to the town. As you can see I simply fell in love with this little town and cannot wait to go back for another visit.