No matter what time of year you happen to find yourself in Lake Como, treat yourself to at least a day trip to Lugano. It is about a 45 minute drive from Menaggio and well worth it.
Lugano is a great place to walk around and discover on your own. There are parks, the promenade which has beautiful gardens, and often outdoor concerts and other cultural activities. The central shopping area provides temptations of all kinds to suit most pockets. The restaurants and cafes are delightful, and there is even a rather fancy McDonald’s if the youngsters are longing for some American-style fast food.
If you have plenty of time, you may like to treat yourself to a stay at the Grand Hotel Villa Castagnola which is at the waters’ edge and one of the most luxurious and relaxing places I have ever stayed. They have a gourmet restaurant as well as an excellent main restaurant and the service is impeccable. I have been there in Summer, Autumn and Winter and each season has its own charm. I am currently thinking about celebrating Spring there too. Just so as not to miss out on the experience. This day trip or short stay should definitely be on your agenda.