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Villa del Balbianello, discover Lake Como Star Wars Villa

Last update : 25 February 2024

When visiting Lake Como, be sure to visit the Villa del Balbianello in the small village of Lenno. The Villa Balbianello or del Balbianello is an incredible place that we loved discovering, undoubtedly one of our favorite places on Lake Como. We enjoyed our visit so much that we decided to write a full article about it. This Renaissance-style villa was built in 1787 and has been used as a film location in famous movies such as Star Wars and James Bond. If, like us, you’re a fan of these two cult movie licenses you should love your visit! En route, to this iconic Italian landmark, a true jewel on Lake Como.

Visiting Villa del Balbianello, practical information

How to get to Villa del Balbianello

Located just 15 minutes from Bellagio and 25 minutes from Varenna by ferry, Villa del Balbianello is in the small village of Lenno. Once you’ve arrived at the Lenno pier, simply walk along the lake to reach the villa’s entrance. There are 3 options for accessing the villa:

  • By boat: allow less than 10 minutes to reach the villa. This is the quickest solution, but it’s not free: count €6 for the crossing and €9 for the return trip. If you choose this option, you’ll arrive via the villa’s private pontoon. I hear the view is incredible!
  • On foot: 2 routes are available to reach the villa by land. One will take you 20 minutes, while the longer one will take you 45 minutes. Note that the paths climb a little, so we recommend taking the boat if you’re not too sporty.

Personally, we chose to reach the villa via the first trail, although it might be a good idea to take the boat on the outward journey and the trail on the return. This will give you several viewpoints and allow you to reach the villa without too much effort.

How much does it cost to visit Villa del Balbianello?

Access to Villa del Balbianello is subject to a fee. Admission costs €12 for the gardens alone and €23 for the gardens and an English-language guided tour of the villa. We recommend the first option, but be sure to book your tickets as early as possible on the official website. This way, you’ll be sure to get your tickets and avoid queuing at the ticket office. Last but not least: come as early as possible! The venue is quickly overcrowded and this can detract from the experience. We went when it opened and found it perfect. For those with a sweet tooth, there’s an ice cream parlour on site.

Villa Balbianello

What is the average visit time to discover Villa del Balbianello?

We arrived when the villa opened, at 10am, and were able to wander around the garden for a good two hours.

Villa Balbianello

Visit Villa del Balbianello, in the footsteps of Star Wars

Villa and wedding venue between Padmé Amidala and Anakin Skywalker

If you’re a fan of the Star Wars universe, it’s impossible not to recognize the planet Naboo as soon as you arrive at Villa del Balbianello! This location was used as a filming location for some key scenes in George Lucas’ famous saga. Specifically, the villa was used in the film “Star Wars Episode II – Attack of the Clones”, released in 2002. The villa was the setting for the scene where Anakin Skywalker (played by Hayden Christensen) and Padmé Amidala (played by Natalie Portman) are secretly married on the planet Naboo. As a Star Wars fan, Alex was over the moon! Feel free to watch the video below to get yourself in the mood before your visit. It will also make it easier for you to recognize the film’s iconic locations.

Villa Balbianello Star Wars
Villa Balbianello Star Wars

Visit Villa del Balbianello, in the footsteps of James Bond

James Bond’s private villa

Villa del Balbianello also played an important role in one of the James Bond films. It was featured in Casino Royale, released in 2006. In the film, Villa del Balbianello appears as James Bond’s private refuge. It’s here that he treats his wounds after his encounter with the film’s protagonist. Scenes shot at the villa include key plot moments, notably between the film’s main characters played by Eva Green (Vesper Lynd) and Daniel Craig (James Bond).

Villa Balbianello James Bond
Villa Balbianello blog

Visiting Villa del Balbianello, where to stay?

The most beautiful hotels on Lake Como

If you’re looking for a place to stay on Lake Como, we suggest you check out our selection of the best hotels on Lake Como. Don’t hesitate to check it out before your next trip to Italy!

Lake Como Lake Como

Thank you for reading

We hope that the tips and good addresses on our travel blog will help you visit Villa del Balbianello!

You can also follow our daily adventures on Instagram 🙂
Clem & Alex

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