Isole Borromee Isole Borromee
  • Isola Bella
  • For however fanciful and fantastic the Isola Bella may be, and is,
    it still is beautiful

    Charles Dickens
  • The Italian-style baroque garden
  • Statues and architectural decorations are alternated with geometries and precious plants
  • Palazzo Borromeo
  • The Baroque at its most astonishing
  • Delfino
  • The rebirth of a “Little ancient world”



Isola Bella

It took almost four hundred years and the teamwork of hundreds of architects, engineers, plasterers, painters and cabinetmakers, who have given rise to the extraordinary transformation of Isola bella from a rock of the lake into a place of delights.

Isola Bella
Isola Bella, cerchia di Antonio Joli (Modena, 1700 - Napoli, 1777), 1756-1760 (?), oil on canvas

Until 1630 Isola Bella was a rock inhabited by fishermen, with two small churches and a few vegetable gardens. The Borromeos, who had already been owners of Isola Madre since 1501, from the first two decades of the 17th century with Giulio Caesar III and Carlo III focused their interest on the island, launching the grandiose project that was to lead to the creation of the palazzo and the garden.

This aim was to be carried forward, extended and defined by Vitaliano VI, who is to all intents and purposes considered the founder of Isola Bella. The work that resulted in the current layout continued without interruption throughout the 18th and 19th centuries, arriving at 1948, when, with Vitaliano IX Borromeo, the Salone Nuovo, the northern façade and the great pier were built.

What to see

Palazzo Borromeo

What to see

Palazzo Borromeo

The Baroque at its most astonishing


Galleria Berthier
Galleria Berthier

A fascinating itinerary between art and history accompanies you through its over 20 rooms.
Heart of Palazzo Borromeo, the Galleria Berthier is a mosaic of over 130 paintings including masterpieces and, following a practise that is recurrent in other noble collections of the period, a number of copies of the great masters of the past of the calibre of Raphael, Correggio, Titian and Guido Reni.

Unique settings are the Sala del Trono [Throne Room], the Sala delle Regine [Queens’ Room], the Salone degli Arazzi [Tapestry Hall] and the Grotte [Caves], born to amaze guests by transporting them into a magical marine world.


Sofonisba, Giovanni Pietro Rizzoli
Sofonisba, Giovanni Pietro Rizzoli (detto il Giampietrino),
c. 1521/22, oil on panel
grotte Palazzo Borromeo
The Palazzo Borromeo's Grottoes, Isola Bella

What to see

The Italian-style baroque garden

What to see

The Italian-style baroque garden

Ten terraces bursting with a different colour at every flowering time

Teatro Massimo
Teatro Massimo, Isola Bella

The Teatro Massimo is the most important monument in the garden of Isola Bella. Statues, obelisks and fountains are perfectly integrated together with the vegetation of the ten scenic terraces, at the top of which rises the statue of the Unicorn, the heraldic symbol of the Borromeo family.

All around the Theatre is a glorious display of rare flowers and plants: the centuries-old camphor tree, Gunnera manicata, known as the giant rhubarb – the leaves of which can reach two metres in diameter -, the perfumed sweet Osmanthus, the extremely rare Halesia diptera with its flowers that seem like snowflakes, the star anise and the Mexican pine.

During its blossoming period the Parterre of Azaleas is enchanting, and the Garden of Love is a joy for the eyes, composed of boxwood hedges creating green embroidery that is visible from the height of the terraces. Camellias, espaliers of roses in May, oleanders in June and citrus trees and panicled hydrangeas at the height of summer all enliven the Italian-style garden of Isola Bella, where white peacocks roam freely.

Since 2002 the gardens of Isola Bella, together with those of Isola Madre, have belonged to the prestigious circuit of the British Royal Horticultural Society.


The Italian-style baroque garden, Isola Bella
Giardino Barocco Isola Bella
The Italian-style baroque garden
Serra Elisa Isola Bella

Useful info

Useful info

Season 2022

The opening of the 2022 season is scheduled from 18 March to 1 November 2022.

Isola Bella is open:

From 18 March to 14 April: Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 to 17.30 (last admission), palace closes at 18 – gardens close at 18.30;
From April 15 to September 30: every day from 10 to 17.30 (last admission), palace closes at 18 – gardens close at 18.30;
From 1 to 29 October: every day from 10 to 17 (last admission), palace closes at 5.30 pm – gardens close at 6 pm;
From 30 October to 1 November: every day from 10am to 4.30pm (last admission), palace closes at 5pm – gardens close at 5.30pm.

We therefore recommend that you consult the homepage or contact the call centre + 39 0323.933478 to receive up-to-date information.


Adults Single Youngs Single Adults Group Youngs Group Baby
Isola Bella (Palace and gardens) € 20 € 11 € 17 € 9 -
Isola Bella + Isola Madre € 28 € 13 € 23 € 11 -
Isola Bella + Isola Madre + Rocca di Angera € 33 € 15 € 24 € 12 -
Isola Bella + Parco Pallavicino € 24 € 13 € 21 € 12 -
Isola Bella + Isola Madre + Parco Pallavicino € 33 € 15 € 25 € 12 -
Download the pdf table with all prices
Adults Single
Youngs Single
Adults Group
Youngs Group
Isola Bella (Palace and gardens)
€ 20
€ 11
€ 17
€ 9
Isola Bella + Isola Madre
€ 28
€ 13
€ 23
€ 11
Isola Bella + Isola Madre + Rocca di Angera
€ 33
€ 15
€ 24
€ 12
Isola Bella + Parco Pallavicino
€ 24
€ 13
€ 21
€ 12
Isola Bella + Isola Madre + Parco Pallavicino
€ 33
€ 15
€ 25
€ 12

How to get there

By car
From the Autostrada dei Laghi motorway in the direction of Gravellona Toce, Carpugnino exit, following the signs for Stresa.
It is possible to park in Piazza Marconi in Stresa and from here you can take one of the boats to reach the Isole Borromee.
Alternatively, you can leave your car in the square in Carciano opposite the dock.

By train
Ferrovie dello Stato railway, Milan-Sempione line, Stresa stop. The station is around 850 m from Piazza Marconi.
With Ferrovie Nord railway, Milan-Laveno line, Laveno stop.

By bus
VB Arona Milan line: departure from Milan Lampugnano, stop B5.
Or Verbania–Stresa–Malpensa, which requires advance booking.
For info:

By plane
Distance from the principal airports: Turin Caselle 140 km – Milan Malpensa 50 km – Milan Linate 110 km – Bergamo Orio Al Serio 130 km.

By ferry
The boats depart from the main locations on the lake.
For further information: Navigazione Lago Maggiore – scheduled passenger service. Also available is a non-scheduled passenger service by motorboat.

Vademecum Covid

Vademecum Covid

From 1 April 2022, for access to museums and other places of culture, it is no longer necessary to be in possession of the enhanced or the basic green pass. The obligation to use face masks, including surgical ones, remains.

The green pass will no longer be required to eat and drink sitting at the outdoor tables of a bar or restaurant. If, on the other hand, you would like to have a coffee, lunch or dinner indoors, the green certificate remains obligatory until 30 April. The basic one that is also obtained with a negative lateral flow test will be sufficient.

Possession of the enhanced green pass is not required to enter shops, nor is the basic one. The obligation to use face masks, including surgical ones, remains.

From April 1 2022, any obligation to have a Green Pass lapses.

For any type of party organised in an indoor location, guests must possess the enhanced green pass.

From 1 May all the main restrictions cease
Facemasks will no longer have to be worn indoors and the Green Pass will lapse, in both the basic and the enhanced form.

The offer of Terre Borromeo

Tour operator & agencies

All useful information for operators: location rental, exclusive experiences, download useful materials and documents.

Events & Weddings

Its multi-faceted spirit and aristocrat allure make this fortress the perfect setting for a special day.

Educational offer

The educational proposal for kindergartens, primary and secondary schools extended to all locations in the Terre Borromeo.

Terre Borromeo

A story of love, protection and respect that has lasted for six centuries.

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Helpful Tips


  • Isola Bella

  • Isola Madre



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  • Terre Borromeo is easily accessible! They are only an hour and a half from Milan and easily reachable from the main airports. Find out how to reach them by car, train and how to book the ferry that will take you to the islands.
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Sentite già il rombo dei motori?
Sono le Rolls Royce che stanno raggiungendo la Rocca di Angera.
A partire dalle 15.00, oggi pomeriggio una lunga coda d’auto d’epoca farà visita al castello per rimanere fino alle ore 18.00. 
Le 41 auto che faranno tappa alle Terre Borromeo fanno parte del Club inglese RREC (Rolls Royce Enthustiasts Club).
Prenotate i biglietti di ingresso in anticipo al link in bio per non perdervi lo spettacolo!
Can you already hear the roar of the engines?
They are the Rolls Royces that are reaching the Rocca di Angera.
Starting at 3.00pm this afternoon, a long queue of vintage cars will visit the castle and stay until 6.00pm.
The 41 cars that will stop at Terre Borromeo are part of the English RREC Club (Rolls Royce Enthustiasts Club).
Book your tickets in advance at the link in our bio to make sure you don’t miss the show!

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