Lake Maggiore has a surprising amount in store for shopaholics! Hopefully our guide will help you find the best outlet malls, designer boutiques and lakeside markets.
There are several markets in the many villages along the lake, the most famous of which is the market in Luino that dates back to 1541. This is the biggest weekly market in Europewith 356 market stalls lining the main roads in town. Held on a Wednesday all year round, it draws bargain hunters from as far away as Germany, Holland and Switzerland.
|Monday||8 – 1||Portovaltravaglia|
|8 – 1||Baveno|
|Tuesday||9 – 12||Laveno|
|8 – 12.30||Arona|
|8 – 1||Ascona|
|Wednesday||8 – 1||Luino|
|Thursday||8 – 12||Locarno|
|Friday||8 – 1||Stresa|
|8 – 12||Cannero|
|8 – 12||Pallanza|
|8.30 – 12.30||Maccagno|
|Saturday||8 – 5||Verbania Intra|
|8 – 1||Ponte Tresa|
|Sunday||8 – 1||Cannobio|
The markets will give you a chance to to spend a few hours on Lake Maggiore shopping for food and bargains galore. The larger markets also have plenty of leather goods on offer.
Shopaholics will also love a trip to Milan’s Golden Triangle, where the most famous fashion shops can be found. Lots of designer shops are also to be found in Lugano, Switzerland which is also easily accessible from Lake Maggiore.
Alternatively, for some cheaper Lake Maggiore shopping, there are some great outlet malls nearby for you to enjoy a spot of Lake Maggiore shopping. Foxtown, in Mendrisio, is an outlet centre where the most famous international brands offer their products at factory prices direct to the customer (www.foxtown.ch). Alternatively, it’s worth visiting Vicolungo Outlets (www.vicolungooutlets.com) (Via Papa Giovanni XXIII, 28060 Vicolungo) or at The Place Luxury Outlet (www.theplaceoutlet.com) (Strada Trossi, 13876 Sandigliano). Or, finally, a bit further afield still there is also the McArthur Glen Serravalle Designer Outlet (www.mcarthurglen.it), open every day from 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. and with 180 stores (Via della Moda 1, 15069 Serravalle Scrivia). All outlet malls offer discounts of between 30% and 70%.
In Omegna, a little village on nearby Lake Orta, Alessi has a fantastic factory and outlet shop. Open daily, it displays the current line at discounts, as well as discontinued items at even deeper savings. Best of all, it’s a chance to see their entire line, from espresso cups to can-openers. Well worth a trip if you are a fan of their products.
Often passed through on the way to Lake Maggiore by those arriving from Milan, Varese is sometimes described as a ‘little Milan’ and has a stylish town centre with a pedestrian shopping street. Why not start your Lake Maggiore shopping experience here on the way to your villa or apartment? There is plentiful underground parking below La Corti shopping centre (payment machines are in the stairways). There is also often a Sunday market in the square in front of La Corti selling excellent local produce.