The area around Lake Orta has long been a favorite among tourists, thanks to the quiet beauty of the landscape, its fascinating history and its wealth of artistic treasures – principally Romanesque and Baroque architecture.
Lake Orta lies to the west of Lake Maggiore, in the northern Italy. It is a minor star in the costellation of the subalpine lakes, but all the fascination and the history of the larger lakes seem to be concentrated in this short space.
Orta is a place of mists and devotion. Morning mists come with the territory: this little jewel, just eight miles long and less than two wide, is the only one of the Italian lakes entirely in Piedmont. The devotion is figured plainly in the 20 small chapels of the Sacro Monte above Orte San Giuilo, with their stirring and educational tableaux of terracotta sculptures – like Counter-Reformation television – illustrating scenes from the life of Saint Francis.
It is there too on the island of San Giulio, dominated by an ancient basilica and more modern convent.
This is also the only Italian lake that has a single, must-stay base: the charming, car-free town of Orta San Giulio. There are some cheerful, historic villages elsewhere, and one extraordinary church – the Madonna del Sasso – perched on a rocky ledge high above the western shore.
Wedding Lake Orta
But it is Orta San Giulio that holds the attention, with its serious cream-coloured houses roofed with thick slate tiles arranged like a display of biscuits, its magnetic lakeside central square ovelooked by the Palazotto – a frescoed 16th century town hall borne up by the stilts of a cosy loggia
- – Villa Gaia with the best view lake on the Borromee island – 10 Miles
- – Villa Ermelinda … with pool and spa – 10 Miles
- – Appartamento Luna with lake view – 10 Miles
- – Appartamento “La Dulce Vida” – 10 Miles
- – Appartamento AQUILONE – 10 Miles
- – Villetta Hilary quiet and sunny – 15 Miles
- – villa panoramica – 15 Miles
- – Appartamento dell’Arco – 10 Miles
- – Appartamento Orange – 15 Miles
- – Villetta RUSTY – 10 Miles