The Ultimate Guide to Visiting Villa Carlotta Lake Como

  • May 1, 2024

Villa Carlotta is one of Lake Como’s most renowned and beloved villas. Located in Tremezzina, it is a true gem of the area for its beautiful architecture, stunning gardens, and charming museum.

History of Villa Carlotta, Lake Como

The villa was built in the late 17th century for the Milanese Marquis Giorgio Clerici, who named it after his wife, Carlotta. Over the years, the estate has passed through the hands of several different owners, each adding their unique touches to the property.

The history of Villa Carlotta is based on more than three centuries of outstanding collections, where art coexists with nature in a breathtaking landscape. Marquis Giorgio Clerici of Milan constructed the mansion in the late seventeenth century, with a stunning view of Lake Como. Caterina Bigli Clerici, the last survivor of the illustrious Milanese family, sold Villa Carlotta in 1801 to Giovanni Battista Sommariva, who was then the head of the Governing Committee of the Napoleonic-era Cisalpine Republic (1797–1802) that had been created in northern Italy.

The Italian government took over Villa Carlotta during World War I. The control of the villa was assigned to the Villa Carlotta Organization, founded by a royal decree in 1927.

Villa Carlotta, Museum and Garden

Today, Villa Carlotta is open to the public as a museum and gardens. Visitors can explore the villa’s many rooms, including the grand salon, the music room, the art gallery, and the bedrooms. The museum houses an impressive collection of artwork and sculptures, including works by Antonio Canova, Francesco Hayez, and Bertel Thorvaldsen.

The gardens of Villa Carlotta are equally impressive. Covering over 70,000 square meters, they are a true wonderland of plants, trees, and flowers, with a stunning view of Lake Como as a backdrop. The Villa Carlotta Garden, known as one of the most beautiful gardens in Italy, is split into different areas, each with its distinct style and theme. Visitors can stroll through the formal Italian garden, the English landscape garden, and the bamboo grove, among others.

In addition to its museum and gardens, Villa Carlotta also has a gift shop and a café, where visitors can enjoy a coffee or a light meal while taking in the stunning views of the lake.

Villa Carlotta Events

Villa Carlotta hosts various events throughout the year, including classical music concerts, exhibitions, and guided tours. These events are an excellent way to experience the villa and gardens in a new and exciting way. Visitors can enjoy the beauty of the surroundings while learning about the area’s history and culture.
One of the most popular events at Villa Carlotta is the International Camellia Exhibition, held annually in March. This exhibition celebrates the beauty of the camellia flower and features thousands of different varieties from around the world.

Villa Carlotta annually organizes workshops, guided tours, summer camp for kids and special events.
Villa Carlotta hosts a series of classical music concerts in the gardens in the summer. These concerts feature world-renowned musicians performing in the stunning setting of the villa’s outdoor theatre. The concerts at Villa Carlotta are a magical way to experience Lake Como’s beauty while enjoying some of the world’s finest music.

Events organized by Villa Carlotta are amazing possibilities to have fun and learn.

Best season to visit Villa Carlotta?

Visiting Villa Carlotta is a must for anyone travelling to Lake Como during any time of the year. Whether you are interested in art, history, or nature, the villa and gardens offer something for everyone. With its fascinating museum, breathtaking gardens, and exciting events, Villa Carlotta is a true highlight of the area and a testament to the beauty and culture of Lake Como. The season from April to June, when the flowers are in bloom, is considered the best time to visit the Villa Carlotta.

What Villa Carlotta is famous for?

Villa Carlotta is famous for its garden, undoubtedly one of the best in Italy. Thanks to the advantageous location, the variety of plant species, the harmonious mix of styles, and the stunning lake views, the Villa Carlotta garden is a popular destination in Lake Como. The monumental azaleas and rhododendrons, the alley of lemons and roses, and the endless richness of rare plants make this park particularly unique.

When Villa Carlotta is open?

Villa Carlotta is open from March to November. From November to March, you can visit Villa Carlotta only by reservation by contacting the villa in advance.

How to reach Villa Carlotta?

You can easily reach Villa Carlotta Lake Como Italy from Como, Lugano, Menaggio and other places by boat, bus or car. 

Where to park the car in Villa Carlotta?

There are both free and paid parking lots close to Villa Carlotta. Autosilo Villa Mainona parking lot in Tremezzina’s Via Peduzzi is convinient parking for Villa Carlotta. Though during peak season, it is easier to come to Villa Carlotta by boat as parking spaces are limited in the area. 

Where to stay near Villa Carlotta?

If you want to stay in the Villa Carlotta Lake Como Hotel located next to the villa, consider staying in Grand Hotel Tremezzo or Hotel La Darsena.

Villa Carlotta Lake Como Wedding Location

Villa Carlotta in Lake Como is a popular wedding destination. Civil wedding ceremonies at Villa Carlotta can be held in the villa’s exquisite hall or on a breathtaking terrace with a 360-degree view of the stunningly blue lake. There are indoor and outdoor spaces for the wedding ceremony at Villa Carlotta. Most couples choose the stunning terrace of Villa Carlotta with a lake view; weddings are also celebrated in beautiful and secluded marriage rooms and romantic nooks throughout the garden of Villa Carlotta.

Related articles:

Five Reasons to Visit Tremezzo

Living the Italian Dream: Villa Passalacqua Opens in Lake Como

72 Hours on Lake Como

Seven Books about Lake Como to buy on Amazon

Seven Interesting and Quirky Facts About Lake Como

Just Say Yes: Five Best Proposal Ideas on Lake Como

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