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.
Create an itinerary including San Giulio Island
map
San Giulio Island Reviews
Rate this attraction
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
1,277 reviews
Google
4.6
TripAdvisor
  • 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.
    View original
  • Small, turns in 10 minutes, but extremely fascinating, even on a rainy day like ours
    View original
  • 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.
    View original
Google
  • 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!
  • Beautiful islet, really quaint as on the other hand is Orta San Giulio. You can get there by ferry and the turns in the least. The Church is beautiful and the crypt really atmospheric. Must see if you visit the Lake.
    View original
  • You can get there by boat in minutes. Quick and easy to visit, is not to be missed. Practically disabled (aside from the nuns of the convent) is a very quaint. It is the only island in the Lake orta and archaeological studies have shown ... that has been inhabited since prehistoric times, since. Neolithic. San Giulio built in 390.la first church. In the late Middle Ages the strategic location made it an important defensive Center .... In the recent 1973 was finally erected the monastery.
    View original
  • To visit with guide! Avoid Sunday mornings if you aren't interested in the mass in the basilica
    View original
Places to stay near San Giulio Island

Plan your trip to Orta San Giulio

  • Get a personalized plan

    A complete day-by-day itinerary
    based on your preferences
  • Customize it

    Refine your plan. We'll find the
    best routes and schedules
  • Book it

    Choose from the best hotels
    and activities. Up to 50% off
  • Manage it

    Everything in one place.
    Everyone on the same page.

Plans to San Giulio Island by other users

1 day in Orta San Giulio BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES August, teens, popular PREFERENCES: August, teens ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 37 days in Italy & Lake Maggiore (Italy & Switzerland) BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES June, culture, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, popular PREFERENCES: June, culture, relaxing, beaches, historic sites ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Vercelli BY A USER FROM ITALY June, outdoors, beaches, wildlife, popular PREFERENCES: June, outdoors, beaches, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 33 days in Milan, Peschiera del Garda & Treviso BY A USER FROM IRELAND June, kids, hidden gems PREFERENCES: June, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Medium 7 days in Piedmont BY A USER FROM DENMARK July, outdoors, slow & easy, popular PREFERENCES: July, outdoors ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Slow & easy 8 days in Milan BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES July, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 1 day in Orta San Giulio BY A USER FROM ITALY June, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 16 days in Milan BY A USER FROM INDONESIA July, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife, fast-paced, hidden gems PREFERENCES: July, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Fast-paced 14 days in Italy BY A USER FROM RUSSIA August, popular PREFERENCES: August ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 26 days in Italy BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA May, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, wildlife, slow & easy, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: May, culture, outdoors, relaxing, romantic, historic sites, museums, wildlife ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 28 days in Milan BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA September, outdoors, romantic, beaches, shopping, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: September, outdoors, romantic, beaches, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium 5 days in Milan BY A USER FROM SPAIN August, teens, kids, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: August, teens, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Medium
View more plans