An aerial view of the Isole di Brissago in Ticino, Switzerland.

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Isole di Brissago


Marooned in the glimmering waters of Lake Maggiore, this tiny pair of islands is famous for its botanic gardens designed in the 19th century. Magnolias, orchids, yuccas and agaves are among the 1700 species that flourish here.

Navigazione Lago Maggiore boats (Sfr16.80, 25 minutes) run regularly between Ascona and Brissago.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Ticino attractions

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2. Museo Comunale d’Arte Moderna

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3. Collegio Papio

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4. Falconeria Locarno

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5. Intragna

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Perching on a rocky ledge at the confluence of the Melezzo and Isorno rivers and looking into a valley bounded by mountain beyond mountain, Intragna has a…

6. Chiesa di San Francesco

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7. Parco delle Camelie

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Wander among fragrant camellia blooms in spring at these pretty lakefront gardens. The park is home to 850 varieties.

8. Castello Visconteo

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Named after the Visconti clan that long ruled Milan, this fortified 15th-century castle’s nucleus was raised around the 10th century. It now houses a…