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From Menaggio to Sorico

This itinerary runs along Lake Como’s north-western shore through lovely mountain scenery,
small fishing villages and along sites of historical and artistic interest. The route follows sections
of the former state road 340, now closed to traffic, and some of the new cycle/pedestrian
lanes along the lake, but it also follows sections along the current main road where
bikers must pay attention to the  traffic. For families we recommend the cycle path
from Dongo to Gravedona or from Domaso to Sorico only.

Description

From Menaggio’s central square, Piazza Garibaldi, follow the long lake side road Via B. Castelli to the Lido, and then continue left along Via Roma which comes out onto Via Diaz. Continue to the right and at the entrance of the tunnel, take the cycle/pedestrian lane to the right. It leads to Nobiallo, a typical fishermen’s village with its narrow alleyways leading down to the lake. Taking advantage of other three segments of the former state road you reach the commune of San Siro.
On your way you pass villa la Gaeta, dominated by the Sasso Rancio cliff. Here some scenes from the 007 James Bond “Casino Royale” were filmed. Then follow the main road for approx. 2.5 km passing through the villages of Acquaseria and S. Maria where the beautiful church of Santa Maria stands. It was built between 1464 and 1474 to house the Dominicans. Next to the church you can see the ruins of an ancient Roman fortress.
Past the village Molvedo take the road (also open to local traffic!) on the right of the tunnel which enters the village of Rezzonico. We highly recommend a visit of this charming village with its little picturesque harbor, its arcades and 13th century castle.
From the parking lot just past the castle, enter Via Statale Vecchia. After 1.5 km you come out onto the state road which you follow for 800 m. Once at San Vito in the commune of Cremia, head towards the church S. Vito, characterized by two bell towers, and enter the marvelous lake side trail without traffic but shared with pedestrians. You have a marvelous view of
Monte Legnone (2610 m), the highest peak of the lake, on the other side of the lake.
You reach the harbour of Pianello del Lario where there is a restaurant and a few cafés. At Pianello del Lario you can visit the interesting boat museum called “Il Museo della Barca Lariana” (for opening times see www.museobarcalariana.it).
Once you have reached the public boat landing stage of Musso, you leave the lake path and head up the steep ramp to the left that ends onto the former state road at the traffic lights. Continue on the former state road (open to local traffic!) and after 600 m at the entrance of the tunnel you turn right to take the passage outside of the tunnel in order to reach Dongo.
At Dongo you can visit the ‘End of the War’ museum that is located in Palazzo Manzi in Piazza Paracchini. It is connected to the events of April 27, 1945, when Benito Mussolini and some of his ministers were captured on the road between Musso and Dongo by local partisans. The museum is open
from April to the end of October from 10 am to 1 pm and from 3 pm to 6 pm. Closed on Monday.
Continue on the state road and just after crossing the bridge over the Albano river, turn right into via Cimitero and, slightly further, turn left in order to reach the parish church of S. Stefano. Behind the church pick up the cycle/pedestrian lane to Gravedona. Just past the lido of Gravedona, turn left and cycle along the Liro river. Cross the bridge and continue along via Roma to the Parish Church of San Vincenzo and the church of S. Maria del Tiglio. It is one of the most important Romanesque buildings
of the province. Built in the 12th century it preserves precious frescoes and a wooden crucifix, a unique example of carved wood from the local Romanesque period. Follow Gravedona’s lake side promenade lined with cafes and restaurants. Head towards Palazzo Gallio, a majestic palace with towers and loggia, built in 1582 for Cardinal Tolomeo Gallio. The lake
side road ends onto the state road and immediately past the power plant you turn right in order to pick up the continuation of the cycle/pedestrian lane that leads to Domaso.
Domaso is an ancient village of Roman origins. For a long time it maintain-ed an economy based primarily on fishing before becoming a tourist resort.
Proceed with caution along the State road 340. After crossing the bridge over the river Livo, turn right into Via Case Sparse, which leads to the beach.
The cycle-pedestrian lane that connects Domaso with Gera Lario and Sorico begins here.
You reach the marina of Domaso where the track continues for a short distance next to the state road. You cross the San Vincenzo river and enter the municipality of Gera Lario with its nice marina. Continue along the long lake towards the northern tip of Lake Como, near the mouth of the river Mera. From here you have a beautiful view of the Pian di Spagna, a vast wetland and nature reserve, ideal refuge for local birds and numerous species of migratory birds, another ideal place for cycling and birdwatching. You soon reach Sorico where the route ends.
Possible continuations: cycle paths in Pian di Spagna (various routes in the
northern and southern parts), connection with the paths “Sentiero Valtellina” and “Ciclabile Valchiavenna”.

Directions & Parking

Map directions →