Despite the proximity to Bellagio, few tourists visit this charming town on Lake Como. Maybe somebody is frightened by his reputation as a village of witches and smugglers. If Bellagio, beautiful and famous, it is the place of the great hotels, shopping and glamour, Lezzeno at a very short distance, is the place where you can discover the most hidden and mysterious soul of Lake Como area.
The two villages are separated by a curved road between rough cliffs. . If you have the courage to go this way and overcome the Devil’s Bridge, located right between the two villages, you will be rewarded with amazing views, fishermen’s homes where time seems to have stopped,mountains peaking on the village and on the lake.
Lezzeno is the longest town on the lake, 7 kms inhabited. Inhabitants here unlike other villages didn’t choose to live too far from the shores and this justifies the numerous fishing activities still well represented nowadays. Village life here had, and has nowadays, a strong sense of belonging and complicity. During the epic years of smuggling it wasn’t uncommon for strangers who asked for information about people of the village, hear the inhabitants answer they didn’t know them at all and then discover the addressees were very close relatives.
Every year in March, on the occasion of the feast of St. Joseph, the banks of the country are illuminated by giant roaches. We know that in Lezzeno have lived many witches, then executed and burned. It is not, however, to recall these events that the burners are turned on. This is a competition between the different hamlets of the village.
The purpose of the competition is to build the stack that will burn for longer than any, but it must be defended from the actions of disturbances of opponents. All the contenders must be young and live in the hamlet they want to represent. On the morning of decisive day the different groups position their pyres waiting till it gets dark then once the fires are lit they all look out at the lake because in the dark a “pirate raid” from other hamlets could try to put out the enemies’ bonfire. Beauty, mystery, history and legends. A little paradise awaits you in Lezzeno,…… just beyond the Devil’s bridge.
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