Monte Isola is the largest lake island in South and Central Europe and despite it only being 12km², is home to almost 2000 people and is located in the beautiful Brescia province in Northern Italy. The island is home to a striking mountain in its centre and due to there being no traffic allowed, it is ideal for quiet secluded walks and serene cycling. The island is home to numerous old villas and monasteries which can be easily accessed from the towns which are located around the coast.
Monte Isola is an Italian ideal, filled with olive groves and vineyards where you can sample the inexpensive local wines after walking the short 3km length of the island. Many of the villas and the Fortress of Martinego remain private but it is possible to respectfully view some of the properties. The walk to the small village of Cure near the summit of the mountain is said to be tiring, but the views of Lake Iseo and its surrounds will more than make up for any tiredness that you may be feeling. You can always reward yourself with an ice-cream from a lakeside gelateria and glass of fine wine after your descent. The island is best accessed from the town of Iseo by ferry and most of the accommodation is located in picturesque Siviano, a small town connected to the path leading to the famous Madonna Della Ceriola shrine.
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