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Why Visit Stresa, Italy

When you think about the perfect Italy itinerary, you are probably imagining yourself marveling at the magnificent Colosseum, riding a gondola in one of the most romantic cities in the world, and uncovering the mysteries of Pompeii. When you are out of sights to explore, you start thinking how amazing will it be to just wander around the charming historic alleys along a cobbled street, take the first bite of the authentic Italian pizza in a small cafe, and to take a long walk along the water coast under the bright Italian sun, while eating an ice cream and enjoying one the most incredible countries in the world. And if fulfilling the first half of this scenario will involve quite a lot of traveling, all you need to bring the second part to life is one small town.

Welcome to beautiful Stresa, nestled on the shores of the breathtaking Lake Maggiore. The scenic town's history goes back to the 10th century, but it wasn't particularly well known until 1929 when the one-and-only Ernest Hemingway put Stresa on the international map by using this picturesque place as a setting for his "A Farewell to Arms" novel. The author loved the town and always referred to it as his "home from home". Stresa is a perfect place to have a brief break from the bursting with life and noise favored Italian cities, taking in the unique beauty of Italian nature in all its vast variety, before heading back to join the party.

And one of the best places to do it during Stresa travel is the Park of Villa Pallavicino. This breathtaking 19th-century Neoclassical mansion and the property's 16-hectare park attracts nature lovers from all around the globe and is believed to be the most beautiful garden in Italy. The grounds welcome you with a fusion of colors and smells, the flowerbeds are planted with dozens of roses, oleanders, magnolias, daffodils, and azaleas and the beautiful statues are scattered around the territory. If you are traveling Stresa with children, they'll love the park's zoo with more than 40 species of animals, including black swans, zebras, and kangaroos. Wandering around the park, you can find a souvenir shop, children's play area, and several picnic spots, as well as a bar, offering a nice selection of drinks and stunning views of the mountains.

What's for other Stresa locations not to miss, make sure to save some time for the gorgeous historic Isola dei Pescatori island.

Two Borromean islands of Isola Bella and Isola Madre are highlights of any Stresa trip. Their gardens are home to an impressive number of plants and animals, including camellias, tropical flowers, rhododendrons, exotic birds, white peacocks, and the garden's gem, the largest Kashmir cypress in Europe.

Must Things to Do During a Stresa Trip

  • Spend time on Isola dei Pescatori
  • Explore the glorious Isola Bella & Palazzo Borromeo
  • Have a picnic in the Villa Pallavicino Park
 

During your Isola Bella trip, you'll see the beautiful 7th-century Palazzo Borromeo palace, offering to take a look at the impressive mosaic table, shell-studded grottoes, and the Salone delle Feste (useful tip: if you visit both islands in one day, you will get a discount).

 

The other "must do" thing during your Stresa trip is taking a cablecar up to the top of the Monte Mottarone. This journey will take 45 minutes and the ride provides breathtaking views across the mountains and the lake beyond. A good idea will be to get off the car at the Alpino Stazione for a quick Alpine Botanical Gardens visit. Hikers can use cablecars to get to the high mountains to enjoy a walk and the views and the mountain bikers are welcome to take their bikes to the summit of the Monte Mottarone and enjoy a picturesque ride back down to Stresa.

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