The beauty of Lake Maggiore
Nature, art and tradition: a place to discover
The Lombard shore of Lake Maggiore holds villages and stunning landscapes just waiting to discover. A cradle of the culture of ceramic art, the Laveno area is rich in the legacy of this ancient tradition such as the International Museum of ceramic design, housed in the rooms of the sixteenth-century Palazzo Perabò. On Piedmont side, vintage houses with balustrades and Art Nouveau buildings line the charming squares and open up to wonderful green spaces such as the botanical garden of Villa Taranto.
The archipelago of the Borromean Islands is located in the branch of the lake called the Borromeo Gulf and consists of Isola Madre, Isola Bella and Isola dei Pescatori, three pearls of undeniable beauty. All principally occupied by beautiful gardens, they host historic buildings such as the seventeenth-century Palazzo Borromeo. On a day trip to the three islands you must not miss Pallavicino Park, covering 18 hectares on the Stresa lakefront.
In Leggiuno on the eastern shore, there is the complex of Santa Caterina, a monastery perched on a cliff overlooking the lake. According to tradition, its origins date back to the XII century when a merchant and inscrutable money lender vowed to Saint Catherine to retreat in prayer after surviving a shipwreck during a crossing of the lake. The chapel built in honour of the saint can still be distinguished in the back of the church.
A characteristic village on the shores of Lake Maggiore, Luino welcomes one of the most popular markets in Northern Italy. This truly authentic weekly fair has enlivened the town since 1535 with stalls offering local handicrafts, ethnic foods, clothing, flowers and accessories.