ometimes wordplays, even the most banal, can exercise an irresistible attraction. This is the case with Torno, an enchanting little village of no more than a thousand residents on Lake Como, whose name suggests the promise of an inevitable return. In the Italian language, in fact, torno is the first singular person of the present tense of the verb tornare, to come back.
Why people come back to Torno is easy to explain. The village clings to rocky promontory in one of the most spectacular sites on the Lake, and has an enchanting view. Walking along the narrow little streets of the ancient borgo, one goes up to the very top of the village; from there, hiking over ancient mule tracks, one finds oneself surrounded by the silence of deep woods, marvelling at the presence of huge rocks carried by once-massive glaciers, evidence over the ages of enormous change. The most famous of these rocks is called “Pietra Pendula” (Leaning Rock), due to its delicate balancing – nobody knows how precariously – on a much smaller rock.
However, as surprising as they may be, Quaternary period rocks are not the reason why people visit Torno. We suggest arriving at the town from the Lake, from where one can admire Villa Pliniana on one side (click here for more about the villa), and a view of the town on the other side, with the bell tower of the Romanesque Santa Tecla church, featuring exquisite frescoes.
If you are inclined to pure contemplation, do not feel guilty, and simply enjoy the view of the lake while sitting at one of the cafés next to the small harbor. But if you have a more dynamic and adventurous attitude, our advice would be to take on the “Strada Regia”, a 32-kilometer, almost completely pedestrian path, which connects Como to Bellagio. Starting from Torno it is also possible to walk along a perfectly manicured and well-marked pathway leading to Brunate.

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