Requested physical exertion: little
Astonishment for the panorama that you will find: immense
How beautiful mountains are… without them Lake Como would be completely different, it would be half as beautiful, beautiful but soulless. It is completely surrounded by them, and, given the result, it couldn’t hope for a better frame.
However, apart from being beautiful, mountains are also inviting and they urge whoever looks at them to climb them. Well, don’t hesitate to do it, it is one of the best experiences you could have in this area!
The best of it is that here there are excursions to suit all tastes and suitable for all kinds of walkers. The secret to choose the right one is to know your own abilities and your own limits. And that’s it.
The walk that takes you to the Church of San Martino, above the village of Griante, on the western shores of the lake, is one of those undemanding walks, to take if you have a couple of hours off and the wish to quickly reach a proper balcony over the central lake!
The how to get there is easy: once you’ll have reached the hamlet of Griante (even by car), all you need to do is to follow the numerous signs to easily find the point where to take the path that will lead you to your destination. However, to make the bearings easier, it will be the church itself that, small and white, will always be visible above you, to show you the way.
All along the slope, you will find various votive chapels, as the structure, built in the XVI century, lately became a Marian sanctuary. Apparently, the reason for this is connected to the finding of a wooden statue of the Virgin with Child in a cave of the rock of San Martino.
You are right in the central part of the lake. This means that, once you’ll have reached the top, you will be able to admire the famous inverted Y shape that so much characterizes the Lario. The promontory of Bellagio is practically right in front of you and behind it you can clearly see the Lecco arm, while the Grigna, the second highest mountain on Lake Como, rises with all its over 1400m, dominating everything.
Bring a good packed lunch with you and I can assure you that you won’t ask for anything more from life! A picnic in front of such a panorama equals a good table in a nice and chic lake view restaurant. You will find tables, benches and a lot of grass as well.
Sure, the walk is all-uphill, but the path is easy and for the first part through the woods. Only the final stretch isn’t, so, if by chance you are going there during the summer it would be better to avoid the hottest hours and bring some water with you…but you will need to bring water anyway.
In conclusion, a suggestion that will be appreciated when your stomach will start to rumble and you will have a dry throat. Just outside the historic hamlet of Griante there is a really characteristic Snack Pub, made out from an old stable. To be honest, the story of this place is even older and more interesting: its name is Vecchia Torre (Old Tower), as the building was probably part of the ancient defensive walls that centuries ago ran all around the village. It so happened that the name of the manager, who in the ‘70s turned it into a bar and restaurant, was Martino!
A stop here, on your way back from the excursion, is practically required.
See you at the next walk.