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Wednesday, May 13, 2009

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So many of my readers are heading to Stresa these days! And with their last minute planning of course they have many questions. Let's look at a few of the most recent ones here, in the hopes they'll be helpful to others.




Q. We are planning to visit Stresa for a week starting 25 May. How is the weather around that time?

A. In the past couple of weeks Stresa has had warm weather, but about half of the days have had some rain. The rain hasn't lasted all day... On the clear days it is beautiful. Lovely weather to eat lunch outside, and a little chillier in the evenings. The end of May should continue much the same. You may experience everything from very warm to chilly to rainy. I hope more of the first...


Q. Thanks so much for your informative blog... We arrive June 13th. We have a very modest list of things to do (thankfully, no 'must see it all' travelers among us) but wonder about whether it's necessary to book some outings in advance, like boat trips to the islands (love the idea of lingering on Isola Pescatori!) or the cablecar to Mt. Mottarone. Since we are only in town for the one week we don't want to, uh... miss the boat!

A. Ferry trips to the islands, or the cablecar, cannot be booked in advance. You can buy a ticket earlier in the day for a certain time, if you are worried about it being busy when you want to go, but of course that will mean an extra trip for someone to the station to purchase those tickets. I would however, suggest that you arrive a little earlier for the cablecar in the summer, as it can be crowded... Another thought, with ten of you it may be less expensive to take your own water taxi to the islands.



Q. Is the Oriental Express restaurant [at the Stresa Train Station] a Chinese restaurant?

A: No, The Orient Express serves fare quite traditional for the area -- pizzas and pastas. Its name is a reference to the famous train that ran from Paris to Istanbul. But if you were hoping that it were an Oriental restaurant, don't despair. The Stresa area has several ethnic restaurants of its own; so you can satisfy that craving for sushi or fajitas, even when you're in Italy. Here are three local favorites:

Izumi Japanese Restaurant
C.so Mameli, 191
28921 Verbania (VB)
http://www.izumi.it/

Mikonos Greek Restaurant
Via Tonazzi Camillo, 5
28921 Verbania (VB)
http://www.mikonos.com

OltreConfine Mexican Restaurant
4, Piazza S. Carlo
28832 Belgirate (VB)

Q. As we will be in Stresa for only two days, is it worth going to Locarno??

A. If you will only be in Stresa for two days the YOU MUST stay in Stresa! Save Locarno (which is about an hour away on the Swiss side of Lago Maggiore) for another trip, and spend your two days seeing the islands, one of the famous gardens, or Santa Caterina. See what's here while you're here!

To those of you who have written in to ask questions... I hope that Stresa Sights has been of help to you. And thanks to all those of you who have written with comments and compliments; it's wonderful to know that this is appreciated and enjoyed. Thanks also to my colleague at Stresa's news blog, stresaduepuntozero.com, for continued help and support, and for recently adding Stresa Sights to his blog, so that the Stresiani can also see what we're attempting to do for the city.



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