Fodor's To Europe!

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Days 1-2
Next stop: Ticino and Lugano Return to full itinerary »

Lake Maggiore may not be as famous as Lake Como, but it has a stunning location with the Alps as backdrop. Its setting is unique: the shores border Lombardy, Piedmont, and Switzerland. The top activities here are exploring the lake and the towns around it, as well as the lake's islands.
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  • Art and Culture
  • Natural Beauty


  • Visit Stresa, which has an aura of faded grandeur, and stop by Villa Pallavicino, which has a zoological garden. Here peacocks and ostriches roam freely.
  • From Stresa, take a boat to the Borromean islands. Isola Bella has a palace and terraced garden, and tiny Isola dei Pescatori makes a great stop for a seafood lunch.
  • Explore Villa Taranto in Verbania, once the home of a Scottish captain. There are more than 3,000 plant species in the gardens.

Side Trips

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