San Giulio Island, Orta San Giulio

The isolated beauty of San Giulio Island made the island an attractive spot for monastic orders to build their sanctuary. The centerpiece, a 12th-century basilica, stands as an icon to the mainland village and is open to the public. Next to the basilica, a 19th-century seminary functions as a Benedictine monastery. Parts of this building are closed to the public. Archaeological findings on the island date back to the fifth century, when a small chapel was erected to honor evangelizer Saint Julius. This notable saint spent his last days on the island, but he wasn't the only known figure associated with it. William of Volpiano, or St. William of Dijon, was born here. Put San Giulio Island into our Orta San Giulio driving holiday planning tool and find out what's close by, where to stay, and where to head next.
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  • The island lies in the middle of the Lake in front of Orta San Giulio. We landed on the islet, after making a panoramic tour of the Lake with the boat we took to Pella. Takes the name of San Giulio, not only the island, but also the basilica that stands on its soil. Because San Giulio? Legend has it that, around the end of the 4th century, the Holy cloak crossed the Lake to found the Church after casting out snakes and dragons that infest the island. This church, however, there are no traces. The name of the only way, "Out of silence and meditation," you can imagine that is a place of peace and spirituality. Not only. Even in history, culture, art and nature. About nature, hence indescribable landscapes are enjoyed, although I loved the scenery from sacred mountain on the island in the middle of the Lake. Along the way wind: 1) the Basilica of San Giulio in Romanesque style of the 12th century; 2) the Bishop's Palace of the 19th century; 3) the Benedictine Abbey of Mater Ecclesiae, home to the island's only permanent inhabitants, approximately seventy cloistered nuns dedicated to the restoration of vestments and the production of "bread of San Giulio"; 4) other buildings on the island, once residences of the clergy, are private residences, including Villa heel.
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  • Small, turns in 10 minutes, but extremely fascinating, even on a rainy day like ours
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  • From San Giulio has a unique perspective and suggestive Lake Orta. You see the lake surrounded by mountains, the Tower of Baptiste and the sanctuary of the Madonna del Sasso. Visiting the island is easy and walk along the only road that follows the Benedictine Abbey of Mater Ecclesiae. The island is rich in history and its Basilica was founded by San Giulio. If you're around really worth a visit.
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  • It's a magical place suspended in time. Lives at a small pace that is hardly disturbed by the turmoil of modern life. If possible come visit it outside of the touristic season, when the quiet of the place will enhance tour meditation. The basilica on the island is ancient and well preserved. Of note are the pulpit carved from a block of local stone and the crypt with the remains of Saint Jules (v century), founder of the Church. Still remembered today is the legend of Saint Jules and his chasing a drake away from the island. Most likely an allegory for the subsiding of ancient pagan rites by tje new Christian religion.
  • Beautiful island! Peaceful and quiet. Definitely going to back there to enjoy it another time!
  • You come to the island via ferry within minutes. 4 people living permanently on the island is some 70 nuns. During the busy season is open the only local restaurant. The island has only one street called reflection or way of silence, depending on whether traveled clockwise or counterclockwise.
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  • The isola San Giulio is a small Pearl in Lake orta. Can be reached from orta costs 4.50 round trip per person. As soon as you arrive you can visit the basilica of San Giulio in which are preserved the relics of the Saint and then continue with the tour of the island which is very small and therefore open short-time. There are restaurants and bars but a souvenir shop. Everything else is present at Orta.
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  • Beautiful Islet in Lake Orta. You can take a boat to a paltry fee. Small but nice to visit through the narrow streets. Beautiful church.
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