Guided Tours of Isola Bella's Borromeo Palace with a private tour guide

The beauty of Isola Bella on a guided tour led by a local qualified English-speaking tour guide

Take a guided tour to discover the treasures of fabulous Isola Bella's Borromeo palace and gardens

Local tour guide booking for group visits:

Private guided tours for ready-made groups, couples, families, associations, small groups of friends, schools


with a local qualified English-speaking guide

Its name literally means Beautiful Island and Isola Bella is undoubtedly beautiful. Only a few people know that its former name was Inferiore (the lower island).

In the 17th century the fame of this island spread over Europe. That's the time when the ancestors of the Borromeo family started the construction of the fairytale-like palace which was meant to be one of the Borromeo's summer homes.

The northern facade of the Palazzo looks towards the Fishermen's island and the edge of the Borromean gulf, where a fertile floodplain that was formed by deposits left by river Toce divides lake Maggiore from lake Mergozzo.

The Borromeo Palace is really impressive especially if one takes into account that it was built on a small portion of rocky land in the middle of a lake! The elegant and opulent Borromeo mansion lying at one end of isola Bella and the magnificent gardens built on 10 levels located at the opposite end of the same island, seem to be floating on the peaceful waters of lake Maggiore.

After meeting in Stresa (r other resorts upon request), our guided tour begins in the baroque palace (that some visitors refer to as the Borromeo Castle). Every room is different from the others and houses something worth mentioning. The Galleria dei Quadri - Picture Gallery - (which is just one of the many rooms that can be visited), is a true jewel preserving an important collection of paintings dating back to the 16th and 17th centuries. Some of these paintings are good copies of famous works. Flemish tapestries, fine period furniture, Murano glass chandeliers and the amazing grottoes all decorated with volcanic stones and pebbles can also be seen during our visit.

The gardens are really spectacular: ten levels of beauty decorated with statues, obelisks, exotic flowers and plants, mediterranen species, lemons and grapefruits...Not to be missed: the white peacocks that live in the gardens, roaming free and showing off amongst the visitors!

Even though this fantastic property, still privately owned by the same family, occupies most of Isola Bella, we can find a quaint village on the island with traditional fishermen's houses and old staiways, some little shops, cafes and restaurants


Group visits ( only for ready-made groups) or individual tours

This guided tour can take place in the morning or in the afternoon.

I can meet you in the lobby of your hotel or at the landing stage in Stresa, Baveno, Pallanza or Verbania. According to your choice, we will reach isola Bella by private boat or scheduled ferry. Our tour will start in the Borromeo palace and will continue outside in the terraced gardens. There will be time to wander through the alleys of the old village on isola Bella before we get back to the mainland, continue our excursion to the Fishermen's island or I may leave you on one of these two islands for your lunch or free time (every tour is customizable, according to your taste and interests)

See Borromean Islands if interested in a complete tour of all the Borromeo islands

Guide booking, group visits, reservations, inquiries for isola Bella tour: