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Where to stay in Stresa and what are some good excursions

Where to stay in Stresa and what are some good excursions

Old Dec 31st, 2014, 04:34 PM
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Where to stay in Stresa and what are some good excursions

We will be arriving on the last Saturday in August and staying until Thursday the 4th of September. What hotel would give us the best location/authentic feeling for the area -price is not the first priority? Any recommendations on what would be some good excursions from the town. we may or may not have a car -what is the recommdation? Thank you very much for your recommendations. I have not been to this part of Italy and want to make the most of my time there.
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Old Dec 31st, 2014, 09:58 PM
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From what I can remember (summer 2012) there are lots of hotels looking out across the water, but not directly on the beach. There was a road going between the long row of hotels and the beach, but it was easy to cross.

The beach I saw was mostly stone. I don't like bathing or even sunbathing, so I never tried to find a place for it.

Stresa is a bit touristy, especially near the water. But it's also very pretty. There are some nice islands that can be reached by boat.

I can't recommend a hotel, since I stayed in a cheap place about fifteen minutes walk from the water area.

What I saw of Stresa was clean and felt safe.

A nice excursion is out to the Borromean Islands by ferry. There are also ferries to other towns around the lake. Or if you prefer big cities there are frequent trains to Milan. And you can also do a daytrip into Switzerland (although you need to remember that Switzerland doesn't use Euro and some small shops there may not take credit cards).
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Old Jan 1st, 2015, 04:18 AM
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I would rent a car for that amount of time in Stresa. You could drive to Lake Orta which is beautiful and stop to visit the St. Francis chapels en route.
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Old Jan 1st, 2015, 04:48 AM
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Besides the Borromean Islands (3 very different ones - with ferries to Stresa and between the 3 and which take a whole day) there are a number of villas to be visited in the area (some with charming gardens as well as tours of villas) lovely scenery to enjoy and boats to other towns around the lakes.

The hotel we stay in - about a 5 mintes walk along the lake front from the center of town has changed hands so don;t want to reco.

We had a car and that helped explore (this was a few day rest for us after flying into Milan before the start of the more active parts of our road trip through Switz to Paris).
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Old Jan 1st, 2015, 06:05 AM
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You will love Stesa---good advice above.
Do not miss a drive to Lago Orta and a trip up Mt. Mottarone by car or by cable car.

My favorite hotels are:
Luna nel Porto
La Palma [ 4 star]
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Old Jan 1st, 2015, 07:37 AM
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Public transport in the area:
Train:
Stresa - Arona - Gallarate - Milan: about every hr
Stresa - Verbania - Domodossola: about every hr
Domodossola - Omegna - Orta - Novara: about every 2 hrs
Gallarate - Laveno - Luino - Locarno/Bellinzona: about every 2 hrs
Laveno - Varese - Saronno - Milano/Como: about every hr
Domdossola - Locarno: every 1-2 hrs
Bus:
Omegna - Verbania railway station - Pallanza - Intra: about every hr
Intra - Cannobio - Brissago - Ascona - Locarno: about every 1-2 hrs
Intra - Premeno: about every 1-2hrs
Domodossola - Macugnaga (mountain village with cableways to glaciers): about every 2 hrs
Dodossola - Tosafall (143 m high waterfall): twice daily
Boat:
Stresa - Isola Bella - Isola dei Pescatori - Baveno - Isola Madre - Pallanza - Intra: very frequent
Intra - Luino - Cannobio - Brissago islands - Ascona - Locarno: about 4times daily
Stresa - Arona: about 4times daily
Car ferry:
Intra - Laveno: at least every hr
Cableways (gondolas):
Stresa - Monte Mottarone
Laveno - Sasso del Ferro
Locarno - Cardada - Cimetta

Public transport is better if you want to include boats and cableways (and may be some hikes) into your roundtrips. If not, a car gives more freedom.
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Old Jan 1st, 2015, 08:14 AM
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as I have posted elsewhere, some time ago [27 years to be precise] we spent 2 weeks in Stresa, without a car, and never ran out of things to do and see.

it's a great place to stay. [and no, i can't remember which hotel we stayed in, sorry!]
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Old Jan 1st, 2015, 09:58 AM
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C,

Our trip was just 2 nts and we stayed on Isola Pescatori, the tiniest of the Borromean Islands. Hotel Verbano, the only loding on the island at the time (2000). We really liked the hotel, our room was big and had a shared,huge north-facing terrace with incredible views. Their restaurant was excellent. Check recent reviews.

We loved that the island was completely quiet at night. However, we did need to arrange a private boat transfer back to Stresa in order to catch the early train we wanted. Other than that, you can use the regular ferries.

We visited all 3 islands and Villa Taranto botanical gardens. We would have loved one more day to take the boat up to Locarno, or is it Lugano? I always get mixed up as to which is at the north end of Lago Maggiore!

If we had been there longer, I think we would have stayed on the shore and had a rental car.

Buon viaggo!
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