Isola Pescatori - Lago Maggiore

Isola dei Pescatori, also known as Isola Superiore (Isola di Pescador in local dialect), is the only one in the Borromean archipelago in Lake Maggiore (municipality of Stresa) to be permanently inhabited.

100 meters wide by 350 meters long, it houses a small village, with characteristic multi-storey houses (with long balconies for drying fish), with a small square, characteristic narrow alleys, the lakefront and the main street to allow the movements strictly on foot of the 57 inhabitants who live off fishing and tourism.

Inhabited for at least 700 years, the island has a parish dedicated to San Vittore and a tree-lined belvedere on the opposite side.

In the summer it enjoys a large turnout of visitors who stroll through the alleys and buy local handicrafts in the small and characteristic market. Famous in August is the procession of the statue of the Virgin Mary on a boat around the islands, surrounded by numerous boats of tourists and inhabitants of the area.

Isola dei Pescatori, also known as Isola Superiore due to its northernmost position compared to the other islands in the gulf, is certainly the most picturesque of the Borromean Islands, as well as the only one to be permanently inhabited. Its small and ancient village is characterized by the narrow alleys on which the typical multi-storey houses stand out, with long balconies used for drying fish; the inhabitants of the island live, in fact, mainly from fishing and tourism.

Its unmistakable and evocative profile is distinguished by the sharp bell tower of the Church of San Vittore that sprouts on the red roofs of the houses and its shore is always occupied by the small boats of its fifty residents. The suggestion increases in the evening, when the entire island is enveloped in harmonious lighting that transforms it into a real living picture, mirrored in the docile waters of Lake Maggiore.

On the island there are typical shops and renowned restaurants where it is possible to taste dishes based on freshly caught fish, a tradition that lasts over time and that never ceases to delight the palates of famous people and not only. In this regard, it is worth mentioning the anecdote that in 1935 saw Mussolini and the other protagonists of the Stresa Conference opt for an off-program on the island, attracted by the desire to taste its most famous dish, the perch.

Once on the island it is impossible not to visit the Church of San Vittore, elected as a national monument, which still retains the original apse with single-lancet windows dating back to the century. XI. Inside there is a sixteenth-century fresco depicting Sant'Agata, as well as some seventeenth-century canvases and the wooden busts of the apostles Peter and Andrew, patrons of fishermen.