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Lake Orta

Lake Orta
Italy's insider take:

Soft morning mists are a way of life on this pocket-size lake, just eight miles long and under two miles wide. Orta has a single, must-stay base town of Orta San Giulio, with cream-colored houses roofed with thick slate tiles as well as unforgettable views of Isola di San Giulio (the resident island). A lakeside central square, Piazza Motta, is overlooked by the Palazotto, a frescoed 16th-century building borne up by the stilts of a cozy loggia. Tourist tackiness is almost absent; instead, there are several delicatessens, an antiquarian bookstore, a shop specializing in period jewelry, and an excellent wine bar—the cozy Enoteca Re di Coppe at Piazza Motta 32.

Information may have changed since the date of publication. Please confirm details with individual establishments before planning your trip.