From our location overlooking beautiful Lake Maggiore in the
picturesque town of Stresa, we explore this magnificent region of
Italy. Visit the Borromean Islands, taste the wines of Monferrato,
visit enchanting Lake Orta, and travel into Switzerland on the
scenic Centovalli Railway.
Stay in the sophisticated town of Stresa, which enjoys a splendid location on the shores of Lake Maggiore
Visit a Monferrato vineyard for a tasting of the local wines, followed by a wonderful rustic lunch
Enjoy a boat cruise to the Borromean Islands, admiring stunning palaces and ornamental gardens
Travel into the Italian-speaking region of Switzerland as we journey though 'one hundred valleys' on the Centovalli Railway
1 outbound overnight stay in Colmar, 7 nights at the 4-Star Grand Hotel Bristol in Stresa and 1 inbound overnight stay in Dijon
Inclusive luggage transfers throughout 1x bag up to 25kg per hotel room (size and weight may vary)
To arrange for a second suitcase up to 25kg (size and weight may vary) - prices start from £65 per bag. Just let us know at time of booking.
Excursions & Entertainment
UK Tour Manager from start to finish
Food & Drinks
16 meals, including 9 breakfasts, 1 lunch and 6 dinners
Enjoy an authentic Italian Lunch at an 'agriturismo'
What’s not included
Cancellation & Travel Insurance is not included in the price of the tour but can be arranged
Days 1-2 - London and Stresa
Meet at our St Pancras Departure Office and board the Eurostar
to Paris, continuing to Colmar for the night. Leaving Colmar on
Day 2, we journey through the beautiful Italian
countryside to the pretty town of Stresa, on the shores of Lake
Maggiore. Our base here for seven nights is the 4-Star Grand Hotel
Bristol. One of the finest hotels in Stresa, it enjoys a stunning
Day 1 - Eurostar meal, Dinner
Day 2 - Breakfast, Dinner
Day 3 - Lake Maggiore
Explore Stresa at your own pace today, perhaps enjoying a walk
along the flower-filled promenade, lined with impressive villas and
neatly terraced gardens. You may wish to take a boat to the
colourful botanical gardens of Villa Taranto and the Sanctuary of
Santa Caterina del Sasso, nestled in a rocky overhang on the lake.
Alternatively, travel by cable car up Mount Mottarone. The journey
offers an amazing panorama - on a clear day, views include seven
lakes as well as the Italian and Swiss Alps.
Day 4 - The Borromean Islands
We discover two of the Borromean Islands, cruising firstly to
Isola Bella for a visit to Borromeo Palace, the magnificent Baroque
structure which dominates the island. After a tour of its lavish
rooms we explore the Italian-style gardens, which sit across ten
terraces and include geometrically designed hedging, water-lilies
and citrus trees. Our next stop is Isola dei Pescatori, which is
inhabited by fewer than a hundred people. It boasts some fine cafés
in which to enjoy lunch, with menus loyal to the island's fishing
heritage. We enjoy an afternoon on the island before cruising back
Day 5 - Market Day in Stresa
You have another opportunity to explore Stresa at your leisure.
Today the town is transformed for market day, and the bustling,
colourful stalls are well worth a visit. Should you wish to venture
further afield, you could visit vibrant Milan, the capital of
northern Italy. If you'd prefer to unwind, you can make use of the
excellent facilities at the hotel for a thoroughly relaxing
Day 6 - Monferrato vineyards and a wine tasting
Our full-day excursion takes us into the rolling countryside of
the Monferrato wine region, famous for its vineyards stretching
over hills dotted with unspoilt villages. Monferrato is important
in the sparkling wine industry, and our day begins with a visit to
a local wine producer where we have a tour of the vineyards,
followed by a tasting. We continue to an 'agriturismo' farm and
enjoy a four-course farmhouse lunch of local specialities and a
chance to sample some of the excellent locally produced wine.
Day 7 - The Centovalli Railway
Enjoy a trip on one of Europe's most scenic railways, the
narrow-gauge Centovalli Railway, to Locarno in Switzerland. We wind
our way across the 'hundred valleys' that give the railway its
name, passing deep ravines and gushing waterfalls, thick forests
and sleepy villages. On arrival in Locarno, you are free to have
lunch and explore. As well as a picturesque Old Town, Locarno has
beautiful subtropical gardens filled with palm trees and exotic
flowers, lakeside promenades, and great shopping on the Piazza
Grande. We cruise back down Lake Maggiore to Stresa - a splendid
way to take in your surroundings.
Days 8-10 - Lake Orta and London
After a relaxed morning, we set off for Lake Orta, Lake
Maggiore's smaller but no less enchanting neighbour. We enjoy a
private boat cruise to the stunning Isola San Giulio, a tiny island
dominated by its impressive basilica, before returning to explore
the delightful Orta San Giulio, the atmospheric town known as the
'Jewel of the Lake'. Situated on a tiny promontory against the
dramatic backdrop of the Alps, this lovely town is truly a gem,
with cobbled streets and a piazza overlooking the lake's sparkling
We depart Stresa on Day 9 and take the train to
Dijon, where we overnight. On Day 10 we return to
London St Pancras by rail.
Please note that while every departure of this tour will feature
the same excursions, the order may differ from that shown
Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be
found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices
& Availability' button. We write to all booked customers
approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise
the exact departure and return time for their particular group.
Due to the nature of our tours they are generally unsuitable for those with restricted mobility. If you’d like to discuss any particular holiday with us in this respect, then please don’t hesitate to call us.
Overall a good holiday but we felt that the food in Hotel Regina Palace was not up to the quality we would expect of a 4 star hotel
Mrs A Smith
Everything worked perfectly from the time we met Caroline our tour manager until we bade farewell after the super holiday
Yes, we really couldnt fault it.Our tour manager was excellent. On one of our free days we went to Milan on our own, wanted to see the interior of the Cathedral having seen it only from outside on a previous trip. Veronica gave us excellent advice as to the comings and goings and where to go for tickets etc, so it was a wonderful day for us.
Hotel was lovely and really no complaints at all.
The whole thing was well organised and as a bonus the weather was perfect too!
Marvellous train journeys. Beautiful hotel with first class staff. Enjoyable excursions by boat and coach and an excellent tour manager who we can't praise highly enough. Hotels in Paris and Colmar were very good too. We thoroughly enjoyed the holiday.
Mr P Irvine
Would have been excellent except we experienced an unplanned train change with limited time for us to transfer with luggage. Also we were not prepared for the step heights between trains and platforms.
Accommodation excellent, tours excellent, tour manager excellent
The holiday was located in a wonderful period hotel with a lake view (upgrade). The balance between free time and organised excursions was perfect.