Boating on Lake Iseo • • Visit Bergamo

Boating on Lake Iseo

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Sarnico, a tourist center in the middle of nature, where the lake begins to shrink before turning in the Oglio River. The star of the show is the boat: the link between the artistic towns that inhabit the banks of the lake and will allow you to go and explore the great blue expanse of the lake.

The cruise will take you to Monte Isola, the largest lake island in Europe, surrounded by the two islets of San Paolo and Loreto, two small satellites that are located at the ends of the large planet fortunes seem to protect him, to the incredible ravine the Bogn, the steep and picturesque cliffs at Riva di Solto.


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Sarnico, a tourist center in the middle of nature, where the lake begins to shrink before turning in the Oglio River. The star of the show is the boat: the link between the artistic towns that inhabit the banks of the lake and will allow you to go and explore the great blue expanse of the lake.

The cruise will take you to Monte Isola, the largest lake island in Europe, surrounded by the two islets of San Paolo and Loreto, two small satellites that are located at the ends of the large planet fortunes seem to protect him, to the incredible ravine the Bogn, the steep and picturesque cliffs at Riva di Solto.


Sarnico

The more you get away from the mainland the more you are able to fully enjoy the magnificent views of the backwoods and freedom which characterizes Sarnico. There is a gem hidden in the vegetation that will surprise you, visible only by boat, Villa Faccanoni.

On board the boat everything takes on a whole new aspect: from the impressive mountains that rise from the banks of the lake basin to the small group of houses that are slowly gathered in picturesque hamlets.

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The more you get away from the mainland the more you are able to fully enjoy the magnificent views of the backwoods and freedom which characterizes Sarnico. There is a gem hidden in the vegetation that will surprise you, visible only by boat, Villa Faccanoni.

On board the boat everything takes on a whole new aspect: from the impressive mountains that rise from the banks of the lake basin to the small group of houses that are slowly gathered in picturesque hamlets.

1Sarnico

Tick-tock: the clock of the medieval belfry of San Paolo Church, built in 1428 over the remains of the Sarnico castle tower, is going to welcome you as approaching the lake. Sarnico is famous for its wonderful art nouveau villas, commissioned by the Faccanoni family. Besides, in the old part of the Gervasoni Palace, a XV Century building located in the highest point of the old centre, you can find the prestigious artworks of the Bellini Picture Gallery. Walking across this lovely village overlooking the Lake Iseo, you can also visit the parish church dedicated to San Martino, raised in the XV Century and rebuilt in 1700: admire the fantastic wooden altar made by the master Andrea Fantoni! Moreover, if you visit Sarnico in spring and summer, don’t forget to make a boat trip to explore the Lake Iseo!

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2Faccanoni's Villa

Villa Faccanoni, the symbol of Sarnico’s art nouveau style, was built in 1907 by the architect Giuseppe Sommaruga. This “bachelor pad” is located on the shore of the Lake Iseo and can only be spotted by the lake.

Surrounded by a big mannerist garden, the villa lies on a high base an it’s decorated by stairways, windows, balconies, together with two lines of bas relief and light coloured ceramics following an asymmetric perspective.

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Montisola

Once you get to the middle of the lake, you’ll reach the island of S. Paolo and where you can appreciate Montisola’s impressive reliefs, on top of which you can see the ancient sanctuary of Ceriola. Next up, tie up to Peschiera Maraglio, a major port of the island, which is perfect for you to stretch your legs and discover the wonders of the island.

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Once you get to the middle of the lake, you’ll reach the island of S. Paolo and where you can appreciate Montisola’s impressive reliefs, on top of which you can see the ancient sanctuary of Ceriola. Next up, tie up to Peschiera Maraglio, a major port of the island, which is perfect for you to stretch your legs and discover the wonders of the island.

3Montisola

Likewise other small islands, Montisola maintained the old habits of people who live far from the mainland and the stress of the city.

The motor vessels headed to the island leave from the villages of Sulzano and Sale Marasino. Once you got to Montisola the small fishermen’s boroughs and their boats, called naèt, will immediately enchant you.

Take a look around and explore the alleys: cars are not allowed to circulate in the island, so you can enjoy it at its best by bike or by bus. Montisola’s perimeter is 11 kilometres long: you can walk it in about 3 hours and a half, to admire the natural landscapes and the lovely views of Bergamo and Brescia lakesides.

However, the most spectacular observation point is on the highest place of the island: at 600 meters in height you can find the Santuario della Ceriola. It’s quite a demanding walk, but it is really worth it!

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4San Paolo Island

San Paolo Island is a charming islet located south of the bigger island Montisola, to which it used to be connected by a track you could walk on when the water level was very low.

During the past, it was considered as an abandoned and desert cliff, where in 1490 the aristocrat Alessandro Fenaroli built the convent of San Paolo, hosting the friar Minors till 1783, the year the whole homestead was sold to privates. 

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Riva di Solto

After a brief stop, the boat will head towards Lake Iseo, where the vegetation alternates from wide expanses of conifers to isolated groups of olive trees that dot the shores of the lake.

Approaching the island of Loreto and its neo-Gothic castle and you will eventually come to Riva di Solto where, in Zorzino, you can admire one of the most amazing creations of nature: the lovely picturesque Bogn ravine, a dizzying rock wall that plunges straightdown into the lake.

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After a brief stop, the boat will head towards Lake Iseo, where the vegetation alternates from wide expanses of conifers to isolated groups of olive trees that dot the shores of the lake.

Approaching the island of Loreto and its neo-Gothic castle and you will eventually come to Riva di Solto where, in Zorzino, you can admire one of the most amazing creations of nature: the lovely picturesque Bogn ravine, a dizzying rock wall that plunges straightdown into the lake.

5Loreto Island

Located north of Montisola, the Loreto Island has been a meeting place for fishermen, traders and pilgrims reaching for the legendary female cloister and the pertaining sanctuary.

Due to the scarce amount of documents around it, the history of this island has been almost unknown up to 1910, when the gentleman Vincenzo Richieri decided to build here a neo-gothic castle as his private house.

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