a heritage without equal anywhere in the world

In 1978, faced with the disappearance of the old nautical traditions of the lake,  a group of friends decided to set up l’Associazione ”La Raccolta della barca Lariana” in order to collect vintage artifacts and pass on nautical history and cultural traditions. The Association wished for the Museo Barca Lariana, situated in Pianello del Lario on Lake Como, to share these treasures with the public, thus becoming an example of excellence in the museum sector.

The project aims to tell the story of sailing while involving the widest possible audience: scholars, researchers, sailing enthusiasts and tourists can all explore areas like Lombardy and Lake Como which are steeped in history and culture.

A dream come true

After 18 years of enforced closure due to a lack of public funding, the Museum has seen its dream come true and opens once more thanks to the appreciation and generosity of private parties.

Currently the Museum displays some of the unique pieces of the collection and aims to digitalise the documents available in the archive of the Associazione La Raccolta della Barca Lariana as well as producing a virtual reality experience in the museum space. This will also involve museum visitors who through the web and interactive tools will be able to provide their own suggestions for the Museum, add their photographs, videos and documents related to sailing

A place created with the people for the people.

The Museum aims to be a living space, active and dynamic, with an approach that is contemporary, interactive and interdisciplinary in keeping with the needs and priorities of contemporary society and making a concrete contribution to the life of the community.

Museo Barca Lariana is one of the prime examples in Lombardy of a “decentralised museum”, a body for safeguarding the area in which it is located, thus giving full expression to the concept of the relationship between museums and cultural landscapes.

This constitutes a  heritage without equal anywhere in the world, the outcome of years of “life and knowledge” of the area and Lake Como which have given rise to a collection of inestimable value for the nautical world and Italian history, all housed in  9400 square metres of exhibition and storage space and over 8000 square metres of gardens.

The Museum is destined to be the driving force behind an ambitious project worthy of a collection of boats without equal in Europe.

  • Nearly 200 row boats and gondolas and nearly 50 hunting and fishing boats
  • Over 100 outboard motorboats and about 100 inboard touring motorboats “entrobordo da turismo”
  • Circa 40 motoscafi entrobordo da corsa e circa 80 barche a vela
  • 3 smugglers’ rowboats
  • The oldest battello on Lake Como, 6 military boats and 4 barconi work boats
  • Nearly 300 outboard engines and 80 inboard engines
  • Thousands of objects to do with the construction and use of boats, as well as hundreds of recordings, slides, books, periodicals and over 3000 photographs.