Villa del Balbianello, Tremezzina

4.7
The queen of Lake Como, Villa del Balbianello rests on the tip of a small wooded peninsula and is celebrated for its elaborate terraced gardens. The villa was built in 1787 on the site of a Franciscan monastery. By the time wealthy American businessman Butler Ames purchased the property in the early 20th century, the villa had fallen into a state of neglect. Ames renovated the estate extensively, making vast improvements to the already impressive gardens. In 1974 the property was sold to Guido Monzino, the leader of the first Italian expedition to Mount Everest, who filled the villa with a rich collection of fine art and artifacts acquired on his expeditions. After paying the entry fee, you can walk freely through the gardens and enjoy the sweeping views of the lake. Guided tours of the interior are available at additional cost. To visit Villa del Balbianello and get the most from your holiday in Tremezzina, create itinerary details personal to you using our Tremezzina day trip planning tool .
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Villa del Balbianello Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.5
2,995 reviews
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4.7
TripAdvisor
  • Parking is about 1 km from the Villa (free- limited availability). Then a 20 min walk up and down hill to the Entrance or take the water taxi (5 Euros 1 way or 7 RT.) We walked there and rode back. Th...  more »
  • Beautiful gardens with lovely statues throughout. We walked here which was uphill and then took a water taxi on departure. Probably the smart thing to do would be the reverse but who said we were smar...  more »
  • As per title. It's always a pleasure to come back, especially it is good to see the site in different seasons because the colors of the landscape and green are different. Always a relaxed visit, apart from the small and pleasant walk from the parking lot to the entrance. This time I must say that the volunteers who run the site have been friendly and professional poorly, I wonder what good does it do if volunteers will eventually want to let the little desposta? MAH. LOCATION still unmissable, UNFORGETTABLE!
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  • We came for the afternoon. It was a half hour walk to the area & this was up and down and hard with kids in the warm weather. Nice building to look at, but you are not allowed in the grass, which is hard with kids. Only 1 toilet in a very hidden place! We caught the boat back to the shore & went for a wee swim after. It was nice to visit for the afternoon. Dogs welcome too.
  • Such a beautiful and stylish villa! I paid for the garden tour and felt it was just right. You get to see the architecture, nice plant vases, and of course the plants themselves. It was all so majestic! My only criticism is that no where did I read it costed money, though the website selectively discloses that it's open to the public. I just want prepared to cough up the €10. Otherwise, it was great!
  • Gorgeous villa. A good 20 minute walk from the ferry landing. Easier walk back to ferry than to the villa. €10 for adults and €5 for kids to access the gardens. €20 and €10 if you want to access the inside of the house too. We only did the gardens. There is a video running on a loop in the garage about Guido Monzino's expeditions to the North pole and up Everest etc. Very steep pathways but makes for picturesque lawns with statues.
  • Definitely the most beautiful villa on Lake Como, and possibly my favorite one in the entire world. Amazing location, interesting history and a stunning design, its terraces are the most beautiful I've ever seen. Used as a set for many movies (007, star wars, and many more), it also houses the many collections of its late owner, and is an interesting museum in itself. Absolutely a must visit if you're on lake Como, and a reason in itself to visit it if you're not.
  • Stunning villa with beautiful trees and gardens. Some of the ideas are interesting. Seeing the cleanliness of the hedges on sheer cliffs was amazing. All the plants are kept very healthy and the plant selection is very appropriate. Only criticism is the price 10€ for a small villas gardens or 3€ for the milan duomo, probably the most famous church in the world. Also if you have a child that needs a pram or you need a wheelchair, forgot about it. The 1km climb up to the villa itself is hard enough for able bodied people. The tracks around the villa itself are incredibly steep and huge cracks in the footpath are common due to the London Plane trees pushing the pavement apart. I saw many people struggling to get down to the first section only to turn back as soon as the cracks started.
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