Set in the mountain-rimmed Lake Orta, this is a fairytale island. It rises from the placid waters like a Renaissance inspired ship. Villas and beautiful buildings stand tall and make it look magical. The peaceful isle is reached by boat from the town of Orta San Giulio.

There are only two streets on the tiny island, leading among the palaces that packed in there. The church is dedicated to St. Julius, who died here in the 5th century. It contains some remarkable artwork. There is still an active Benedictine monastery to keep the island populated; the other "residents" come for vacations and day trips. With its charming atmosphere and quiet setting, it's a popular spot for weddings. There is a restaurant on the island set inside the 17th century Villa Tallone, to make a memorable day of your trip to the miniscule island.

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Address in Orta San Giulio:

Isola San Giulio.

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