Lake Maggiore and the surrounding territory are well connected and easy to reach with a variety of transportation alternatives, both from Italy and abroad. The road network is in good condition, the railway connections are in place and important domestic and international airports are nearby.
Let us examine the specific instructions for reaching some of the main towns on Lake Maggiore and the surroundings.
The Verbano, considering the roadways, is well-connected to the south – that is from the Po plain – and with the countries of Europe. The connection with Milan is assured by the A8 Lakes Motorway. It is also possible to reach Arona – an attractive city and a crucial point of access to Lake Maggiore – via state route 32. State route 33 of Sempione [Simplon] skirts the western shore of the lake as far as Stresa. On the Lombardy shore, provincial route 69 intercepts the towns and cities along the lake shore.
Liguria, Alessandria and the Milan-Turin motorway are connected to the Piedmont shore via the A26 Motorway of the Tunnels with exits to Lake Maggiore at Arona, Meina, Carpugnino, Baveno-Stresa and Gravellona Toce.
From the north, via Locarno in Switzerland and thus from Central Europe, Lake Maggiore is easily reached from the two motorways that cross the Gotthard, San Bernardino and Simplon passes.
The railway connections to both the Lombardy and Piedmont shores of Lake Maggiore are good. It is a fine occasion to travel comfortably, enjoy the landscape and marvellous views.
Trains connect the most important cities and towns on Lake Maggiore with the most important Italian cities and beyond. The connections with Switzerland are good and consequently so are those with the rest of Europe. This is attributable to the north-west Arona-Domodossola line and the Simplon tunnel. In the southern area, train lines arrive from Milan, Turin and Genoa to reach Stresa and Laveno and, in both cases, the lines continue north along the shores of the Verbano.
Here is a brief overview:
Piedmont shore: The international Milan-Domodossola-Briga-Paris line stops at Arona, Meina, Belgirate, Stresa, Baveno and Verbania.
Lombardy shore: The Milan-Saronno-Varese-Laveno continues the entire length of the eastern shore.
Swiss trains: The Federal Railways connect several Swiss cantons with the city of Locarno and then continue on toward Lake Maggiore.
For the enthusiasts of bike tourism, it is useful to know that the railway services of Trenord include the possibility to transport bicycles on the train – at certain conditions – and paying a small supplement for the transport. For more specific information, see the dedicated page on the Trenord site.
Lake Maggiore is also well-served by the airlines.
Visitors can, in fact, count on the following in the vicinity:
Milano-Malpensa Airport: international, second in Italy for passenger traffic, only 26 km from Arona.
Milano-Linate Airport: domestic and short range European traffic.
Torino-Caselle Airport: north of Turin, the capital of Piedmont, about 1-½ hours drive to Lake Maggiore.
Locarno Airport: a small airport on the Magadino plain, at the north-east tip of the Verbano.