The Islands & Gardens of Lake Maggiore

8 Days from £999 | October, May, July 999

This holiday includes a week on Lago Maggiore, Italy’s second largest lake, which stretches north from Lombardy and up into Switzerland. It lies, sheltered, on the south side of the Alps, making for a mild climate and consequent lush vegetation. Famed gardens feature Mediterranean and exotic flora, including azaleas, rhododendrons and camelias.

The Islands & Gardens of Lake Maggiore

Past Customer Satisfaction Score for this holiday* - 86%
* as measured from holiday questionnaires - see FAQ for details

  • 7 nights hb Lake Maggiore
  • Full day excursion by boat to the Borromean Islands, and boat excursion to Captain McEacharn’s fabulous Villa Taranto garden
  • Excursion to Lake Orta

Day One: Flight to Milan, transfer to your Lake Maggiore Hotel for seven nights half board accommodation. Transfer times from Malpensa and Bergamo are 45 minutes, and 1 ¾ hours respectively.

Days Two to Seven: These are spent on Lago Maggiore, where beautiful villas line the shores. Our hotel is in Stresa, the lake’s main resort, halfway up the lake and from where boats and steamers frequently traverse the lake from the landing quay close to the hotel. The lakeside promenade near the hotel allows for a pleasant stroll to the pretty town centre – around the main Piazza there is a good range of shops, bars, and restaurants. As long as it is operating, you will have the chance to travel high onto Mount Mottarone by cable car – fabulous views!

We have included three excursions during your stay.

  1. The Borromean Islands. Your first excursion features Lake Maggiore’s three best-known islands, which lie in the bay, a short way from the shore. Your first island Isola Madre, ‘Mother Island’, has an impressive villa and gardens with towering palm trees – the tallest in Italy. You then have free time for lunch on the pleasant quays of Isola dei Pescatori, the ‘Fishermen’s Island. It is a very short crossing to Isola Bella, the ‘Beautiful Island’, with its 17th-century palace – you are following in the holiday footsteps of Goethe, Byron, Stendhal, Wagner and Hemingway! The formal gardens, patrolled by peacocks, contain plants from all over the world. Entrance fees and Guide Service on both Isola Madre and Isola Bella are included.
  2. The Villa Taranto Botanic Garden. You take the boat across the bay to Pallanza. Although supposedly created as an ‘English’ garden, Villa Taranto’s heritage is very much Scottish – its creator, Captain McEacharn, was a proud Scot: the Taranto name comes from one of his Macdonald ancestors, who was given the title ’Duke of Taranto’ by Napoleon and whose father sped ‘over the sea to Skye’ with Bonnie Prince Charlie! The entrance to the garden is through ‘Conifer Alley’. Highlights include the water gardens, the Dahlia Garden and the herbarium and the fine terraces.
  3. Lake Orta. You will have a relaxing excursion to one of the most beautiful lakes in Europe, Lake Orta. You travel firstly to San Filiberto to take the ferry to Orta S. Giulio with its quaint cobbled streets and picturesque lakeside piazza. You will have time to explore and have lunch before taking the ferry across to the island of San Giulio, with a short time to wander round and/or visit the fascinating 12th century Basilica. From here you take the ferry back across the lake to San Filiberto, where the coach will be waiting to take you back to the hotel.

Day Eight: Free time until you depart for the airport for your flight home.

A Walking Holiday in this area is also available. Details elsewhere on our website and in our Walking Holidays brochure.

Please note: there is a local city tax in Stresa of 2 euros per person per day. It is not included in the price of the holiday and will be payable by hotel guests directly to the hotel.


The Islands & Gardens of Lake Maggiore

Past Customer Satisfaction Score for this holiday* - 86%
* as measured from holiday questionnaires - see FAQ for details

HOTEL MILAN SPERANZA AU LAC ****, Stresa (seven nights)
This four-star hotel is in two adjacent buildings in the centre of  Stresa, overlooking the lake and opposite the boat station. The Speranza has a pleasant street-front café while the Milan houses the hotel restaurant. All rooms have bath or shower, wc, hairdryer and satellite tv. Lake view rooms are available at a supplement. Milan Speranza guests have use of the swimming pool (mid-May to mid-September) at the nearby Hotel Regina Palace. (
Past Customer Satisfaction Score for this hotel* - 79%
*as measured from holiday questionnaires - see FAQ for details
Escorted Holiday - The Islands & Gardens of Lake Maggiore
Holiday code: 7MAG
Supplements per person:
Single Room: £140
Lake View Twin/Double Room: £90 - £91
Travel Insurance: £59.95
Supplements on some holidays vary by departure date - the applicable price will be shown when booking.

Fly FromDateDaysAirlineDep.Rtn.AvailabilityPriceFly ToSingle

AberdeenTue 06/10/20208BA via LHR11051730Places Available1119Milan Malpensa14034ABZ17MAGG4

AberdeenTue 18/05/20218BA via LHR11051730Places Available1219Milan Malpensa14026ABZ17MAG91

AberdeenThu 22/07/20218BA via LHR11051730Places Available1219Milan Malpensa14023ABZ17MAG92

BristolTue 06/10/20208Ryanair08400815Places Available1049Bergamo14034BRS17MAGG4

BristolTue 18/05/20218Ryanair08400815Places Available1149Bergamo14026BRS17MAG91

BristolThu 22/07/20218Ryanair16551630Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14023BRS17MAG92

DublinTue 06/10/20208Ryanair08502330Places Available1049Bergamo14034DUB17MAGG4

DublinTue 18/05/20218Ryanair08502330Places Available1149Bergamo14026DUB17MAG91

East MidlandsTue 06/10/20208Ryanair13201805Places Available1049Bergamo14034EMA17MAGG4

East MidlandsTue 18/05/20218Ryanair13301810Places Available1149Bergamo14026EMA17MAG91

East MidlandsThu 22/07/20218Ryanair11301105Places Available1149Bergamo14023EMA17MAG92

EdinburghTue 06/10/20208Easyjet20151945Places Available999Milan Malpensa14034EDI17MAGG4

EdinburghTue 18/05/20218Easyjet20201940Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14026EDI17MAG91

EdinburghThu 22/07/20218Easyjet20151945Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14023EDI17MAG92

HeathrowTue 06/10/20208BA15101245Places Available1039Milan Malpensa14034LHR17MAGG4

HeathrowTue 18/05/20218BA15101245Places Available1139Milan Malpensa14026LHR17MAG91

HeathrowThu 22/07/20218BA12001650Places Available1139Milan Malpensa14023LHR17MAG92

Leeds-BradfordMon 05/10/20208BA via LHR10001705Places Available1119Milan Malpensa14034LBA17MAGG4

Leeds-BradfordMon 17/05/20218BA via LHR09551705Places Available1219Milan Malpensa14026LBA17MAG91

LiverpoolTue 06/10/20208Ryanair18302320Places Available999Milan Malpensa14034LPL17MAGG4

LiverpoolTue 18/05/20218Ryanair18302320Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14026LPL17MAG91

LiverpoolThu 22/07/20218Ryanair13451320Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14023LPL17MAG92

London GatwickTue 06/10/20208Easyjet13451440Places Available999Milan Malpensa14034LGW17MAGG4

London GatwickTue 18/05/20218Easyjet13451440Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14026LGW17MAG91

London GatwickThu 22/07/20218Easyjet09001310Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14023LGW17MAG92

LutonTue 06/10/20208Easyjet07201155Places Available999Milan Malpensa14034LTN17MAGG4

LutonTue 18/05/20218Easyjet07201155Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14026LTN17MAG91

ManchesterTue 06/10/20208Easyjet16551615Places Available999Milan Malpensa14034MAN17MAGG4

ManchesterTue 18/05/20218Easyjet16551615Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14026MAN17MAG91

ManchesterThu 22/07/20218Easyjet16551615Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14023MAN17MAG92

NewcastleTue 06/10/20208BA via LHR11451540Places Available1119Milan Malpensa14034NCL17MAGG4

NewcastleTue 18/05/20218BA via LHR11451540Places Available1219Milan Malpensa14026NCL17MAG91

NewcastleThu 22/07/20218BA via LHR06051945Places Available1219Milan Malpensa14023NCL17MAG92

SouthendMon 05/10/20208Ryanair19252330Places Available1049Bergamo14034SEN17MAGG4

SouthendMon 17/05/20218Ryanair19252330Places Available1149Bergamo14026SEN17MAG91

StanstedTue 06/10/20208Ryanair08450020Places Available999Milan Malpensa14034STN17MAGG4

StanstedTue 18/05/20218Ryanair08450020Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14026STN17MAG91

StanstedThu 22/07/20218Ryanair08452255Places Available1099Milan Malpensa14023STN17MAG92

Prices shown include carriage of one piece of hold luggage per person (maximum size and weights vary). Prices include return transfers between airport and hotel and are based on the shared occupancy of twin/double standard rooms. Please refer to 'Accommodation' for details of any room supplements (including single rooms) and extended stay costs that apply to this holiday. All flight details are provisional and subject to confirmation when known. All holidays are subject to minimum numbers and are subject to availability. Further details in our FAQ.

Data as at 23/09/2020 at 21:47:07

Just wanted to say how much I enjoyed your holiday to Lake Maggiore. I was particularly impressed by how many people had travelled with you in the past and remained faithful to you. It was a very nice group of people and the organisation was extremely good. Lake Maggiore is fantastic!

Mrs J, Gloucestershire

Beautiful location, terrific hotel staff – all so friendly and very helpful. Representative couldn’t have been more helpful and informative.

Mrs B, Glasgow

Loved this holiday, it ran like clockwork. Pauline our Tour Guide was fabulous. The organisation of everything was excellent. This was my first escorted tour and I liked that there was a day break between the excursions, so it was not too tiring. Please let me have next year's brochure.

Mrs, S, Glamorgan

Thoroughly enjoyable holiday! Excursions well organised and nicely spread over the week. Hotel staff friendly, welcoming – dining room staff efficient and worked very hard. Would recommend this holiday to friends. Miss G, West Yorkshire

Miss G, West Yorkshire

Had a wonderful time on the Islands and Gardens of Lake Maggiore holiday. Pauline our Tour Director was very nice, helpful and organised and the hotel was wonderful with lovely staff and food.

Mrs L, Middlesex

Thank you, Preferred Travel Services, for organising an amazing holiday at Lake Maggiore. We had a fantastic time and all arrangements etc. were perfect. Really commend your organisation. I am already looking at your recent brochure and am confident that whatever we choose we will find it as good as our recent tour with you. Apart from arrangements we highly commend your tour escort Pauline who made this trip so lovely and relaxing. Hope we will have many more tours with you. Once again thank you for your very helpful staff and arrangements.

Mr & Mrs S, Glamorgan

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Don't forget, we fly from 20 airports right across the UK.
Most of our holidays include half board as standard.
All of our holidays have included visits and tours.

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The Islands & Gardens of Lake Maggiore