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For centuries now, the peace and beauty that are found in abundance all around Lake Como have attracted visitors from around the world. The towns and villages that dot the shoreline each hold a unique charm. One of these, Cadenabbia, is a tiny settlement filled with provincial charm and a history of distinguished guests, both of which are attracting modern day visitors in increasing numbers.
Cadenabbia is found on Lake Como’s west shore. It is situated in close proximity to the town called Griante, with the line between the two settlements barely distinguishable. Once a stopping off place for boatmen transporting goods along Lake Como, Cadenabbia was eventually discovered by the aristocracy, a number of whom built villas there during the 17th-19th centuries. Mount Crocione towers behind the village, which extends practically to the shores of the lake. The Bellagio headland lies opposite, with the impressive Dolomites as a backdrop.
Many prestigious figures have passed the time at Cadenabbia. No less a personage than Britain’s Queen Victoria once took a holiday on the shores of Lake Como here, as did Nicolas II of Russia. Giuseppe Verde composed a portion of La Traviata here, and American poet Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was so moved by the beauty of the area that he wrote several poems in admiration of it.
Fortunately, modern day visitors can enjoy the same opportunities to enjoy the peace and quiet of Cadenabbia for themselves. Several elegant lodgings are available in this still-tiny village. The Villa Linda is an excellent choice for lovely views and large, well-appointed rooms. Other travelers select the Grand Hotel Cadenabbia for its old world luxury and style.
Whatever accommodations are chosen, they will prove an indispensable opportunity for rest and repose. Daylight hours are spent boating and hiking. One popular local attraction is the 16th century San Martino church. Though it is a steep trail leading to the church, the effort is well repaid by gorgeous views of the surrounding countryside. Many visitors also come to Cadenabbia to sample the local wine and taste the fresh regional cuisine. Others will want to discover the first Anglican church constructed in Italy: the Church of the Ascension. In Cadenabbia, aimless wandering is encouraged as this leads to discovering a new place to try some gelato or coffee, or a tiny, dimly lit shop where treasures can be purchased. This is an idyllic location for allowing the days to slip by in voluptuous idleness; Cadenabbia encourages the relaxation of mind, body and spirit.
For the world-weary, or those who simply seek a refuge, Cadenabbia is an excellent destination in which to forego the rush of the modern world in favor of lush countryside, sunny days, and peace.