Italy's Lago di Orta

By Beth Habian
This item appears on page 73 of the February 2014 issue.
The ochre-colored Chiesa di Santa Maria Assunta.

While most travelers to northern Italy are familiar with its beautiful Lake District and the many villages and villas that line the two most popular lakes, Lago Maggiore and Lago di Como, there is a hidden gem located on the shores of the smaller, less-visited Lago di Orta.

The picturesque village of Orta San Giulio has all the elements of a quaint Italian village: a beautiful church, the ochre-colored Chiesa di Santa Maria Assunta (pictured above); charmingly worn buildings with faded, frescoed facades; narrow, sloping, cobblestoned streets, and shops, restaurants and gelaterias rimming a central square. What it does lack (thankfully) are the crowds.

BETH HABIAN, Features Editor