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Leisure

Thanks to the excellent location of the hotel, the following destinations can be easily reached:

Lake Maggiore navigation (2km), for excursions on the lake.
Bus station (150 m. away) to visit the large market and the numerous shops in Intra, for excursions to Milan or to go to the railway station (Sempione line).
Highway A26, just 10 km away.

 

1 - Parco dei lagoni

The park covers a 500-hectare surface and is one of the most important Italian wetlands.
In addition to several species of small animals, plants and water plants, the small lakes around the wetlands are also famous for some important archaeological finds dating back to the 4th century.
Park your car in the nearby parking lot and walk to the Park.
Information: Natural Lagoni park in Mercurago – telephone: 0322-240239
Natural Lagoni park in Mercurago – fax: 0322-240240.

 
2 - San Carlone

Federico Borromeo, the cardinal mentioned by Manzoni in his “Promessi Sposi”, had a huge statue, devoted to his famous cousin Carlo Borromeo, built on the hill above Arona, their native town, about three hundred years ago. 
The so-called "San Carlone" was made with copper and bronze plates, all nailed one on the other, so that it could be even seen from Lake Maggiore; the statue, including the pedestal, is 35 meters high, i.e. approximately as high as a ten-storey building.
At the time ,St. Charles’ statue in Arona was the only monumental statue in Europe.
A winding staircase inside the statue gives visitors the possibility to reach the head of the statue and enjoy a magnificent view of the lake.

 
3 - Isole Borromee

Isola dei pescatori
Isola dei Pescatori (fishermen’s island) was named after the main activity carried out by the local people. This charming island is characterised by its simple antiquity, its white houses and the narrow alleys which render this island one of the most romantic spots of the lake area. The fish of the lake is served in the excellent local restaurants. 

Isola Bella
The palace and the gardens of Isola Bella, i.e. the most important attractions of Lake Maggiore, were built starting in 1632. During their visit to Palazzo Borromeo, the visitors will have the opportunity to see splendidly furnished rooms on the ground floor and the floor reserved to the noble family. The gardens are 37 meters high (with 10 terraces) and are characterised by plants coming from anywhere. This is why this garden is a wonderful example of a typical Italian garden of the time. The pyramidal structure of the gardens, with flower beds and fountains, renders them unique.

Isola Madre
It is the largest island of the Borromee group of islands and is characterised by a composed, quiet and enchanted atmosphere. A garden with rare plants and exotic flowers, where white peacocks, parrots and pheasants live freely and give this place the typical charm of a tropical country, can also be admired. Isola Madre is especially famous for the wonderful display of azaleas and rhododendrons. A 16th century palace was opened to the public in 1978. Its period rooms and collections of liveries, dolls and fine pieces of China are worth seeing. Its exhibition of 18th-19th century “puppet theatres” is also wonderful. 

 
4 - Villa Pallavicino

The park of Villa Pallavicino is located on the southern part of Stresa, along the state road to Arona. You will spend an unforgettable day in one of the most charming places of Lake Maggiore, amidst century-old trees, wonderful flowers and more than 40 species of mammals and exotic birds (lamas, kangaroos, zebras, beavers, flamingos and parrots).
The villa is surrounded by an English garden, famous for the wide variety and beauty of its plants and the charming view of the lake and the Swiss mountains, which create a breathtaking background. 

 
5 - Villa Taranto

If you are in the vicinity of Lake Maggiore, Villa Taranto and its gardens famous anywhere in the world are worth a visit of at least a couple of hours (for those visitors who are really in a hurry).
The present appearance of the Villa Taranto garden is not spontaneous, but is the result of a long work, carried out over time and started by Captain McEacharn in 1931.
Entering the gardens of Villa Taranto, with its plants coming from any parts of the world and rare collections, is like travelling to some faraway country. 

 
6 - Santa Caterina del sasso

The hermitage of Santa Caterina del Sasso is located in the municipality of Leggiuno.
The hermitage, a monastic complex dating back to the 13th century, clings to a rock sheer to one of the deepest points of Verbano.
Art and history are perfectly mingled in this charming natural scenario, similar to a balcony overlooking the Borromee islands. 

 

7 - Il castello di Angera

This castle is considered one of the most important of the Verbano area and is located on a hill above the small city of Angera.
It was built in the medieval period and its typical 13th – 14th century defensive features can still be admired. The Justice room is also worth a visit. This large room is characterised by an important series of frescoes devoted to the signs of the zodiac.
The Museum of dolls and the archaeological museum, with finds coming from the area of Angera and dating back to the period from the Mesolithic to the Roman time, both located in the castle, can be visited from March to October.

 
8 - Orta San Giulio

The island is located about 400 m from the shore. Most of its surface is covered by the Seminary, built in 1844 on the ruins of the ancient castle tower.
St. Julius’ Basilica is worth a visit. It is open every day from 09.30 a.m. (11.00 a.m. on Mondays) to 12.15 and from 02.00 p.m. to 05.45 p.m. (06.45 in summer time).