What a glorious day!! The beautiful blue sky and balmy October weather couldn’t have been better for the day trip to Lago Maggiore and two of its beautiful little islands, Isola Bella and Isola Pescatori.
Upon arrival in Stresa, a private boat was engaged for the day, beginning with the 5-10 minute ride to Isola Bella (aptly named: “beautiful island”), home of the magnificent Palazzo Borromeo.
The tour through the palace was very interesting…
…and afforded stunning views of Lago Maggiore and/or the park and gardens around the palazzo.
The lower level of the palazzo (the grotto) was fascinating and beautiful. Cobblestone and shells made for a cool place for the family to retreat to in hot weather.
The grounds on the east side of the palazzo were very… interesting. Quite decorative. Edith Wharton devoted an entire chapter in her 1904 book on Italian villas to the palace and its unique gardens.
From there the group walked back to the waiting boat for the five-minute ride to little Isola Pescatori (fisherman’s island).
A lovely lunch was enjoyed on the terrace of the Ristorante Unione Superiore.
From there the boatman made a circle the long way around Isola Bella for a good look at the island and the Palazzo, then it was back to Stresa, where the coach was waiting for the drive back to the villa.
The group arrived home in time to enjoy some lovely late afternoon sun before another wonderful dinner at the villa.