Lake Como gets more press than Stresa and Lago Maggiorie, but it shouldn't be so. Sresa and the lake have much more to offer.

You can go to the islands of Isola Bella and Isola Pescadore for a decent price and both are fun to walk around.

A nice day trip is to use the Lago Maggoirie Express, which uses  trains to take you to the far end of the lake and a boat ride back to use up a day and get a good view of the surrounding mountains and the lake towns.

Lake Orta is another great day trip.

It is hard to find a bad restaurant in Stresa. Your hotel will make several recommendations. Fiorentino is one good choice. Another has a 100 year old grape vine growing up through the eating patio, but the name is lost. Just ask for the old vine.

You can get a good meal at the old town square. There is also an excellent grocery store in this area offering affordable wines, meats, cheeses and breads. Another popular place is the wine shop, which sells not only wine, but seasonings.

Stesa is an easy train ride from Milan. Landing in Milan and using Stresa as a place to get adjusted is a must. From here you can go on to Switzerland in a most scenic ride, or travel back to Milan to fly out or go to other major destinations via rail. Rail travel in Europe is timely, clean and enjoyable.

Hotel du Parc and Regina Palace are highly recommended hotels.

Italy and in particular, Northern Italy is a wonderful area and should not be missed.

THE NAME OF THE RESTAURANT WITH THE OLD GRAPE ARBOR IS PIEMONTESE AND IT IS INDEED EXCELLENT1