Day 1: Isola Bell
There are many lakes in Northern Italy, but Lake Maggiore really stands out. It is where the Southern Swiss Ticino and the Italian Piedmont and Lombardy regions meet. With its considerable length, stylish promenades, winding mountain roads, sleepy villages and glitzy seaside resorts, it is simply a stunning lake. On our first day we start out in the afternoon, driving along the lakeside to the promenade of Pallanza with its small street cafés – a perfect setting for a cruise in a Mercedes-Benz SL.
Later in the evening our skipper Marcello will await us at the hotel’s pier to take us on a boat trip to Isola Bella, a UNESCO World Heritage site. In the evenings, this island is deserted but for the connoisseurs who dine at the island’s restaurant. Not only does it offer culinary highlights, but it also rewards its guests with an exceptional panoramic view of the strings of lights at the lakefront.
Day 2: Driving fun at the Monte Mottarone
Double clutching and curves: If you are aiming high and appreciate panoramic views high up above the lake, you will find what you are looking for today. Along a winding road with numerous serpentines we ascend from Stresa, passing aristocratic villas located beautifully in the hills, high up until we cross the timber line. Our first stop is Monte Mottarone, just under 1,500 metres above sea level. From here we have a fantastic panoramic view from the snow-covered Swiss Alps to the lakes of Northern Italy, Lake di Varese, Lake Maggiore and Lake d’Orta. Orta San Giulio is one of the most beautiful villages in Italy with its cobblestone, arrow alleyways, high-rising baroque houses and beautiful lakefront at Piazza Mario Motta. Later in the afternoon our route through the “Sacro Monte d’Orta” and “Monte Mesma” natural reserves will be a lot less busy. Near Arona we return to the shore of Lake Maggiore in the South-West, passing Mediterranean vegetation and turn-of-the-century villas as we follow the shoreline.