Loved Stresa. Great atmosphere. Ate out several nights. Particularly enjoyed the Taberna del Pappagallo, with its indoor vines, great atmosphere, friendly and entertaining waiters, good honest food, and superb desserts. Also enjoyed the small wine tasting bar in the same street (Via P.assa Margherita). Best of all was the La Malghera restaurant on Isola Bella. Co-owners very friendly and give superb service. Thanks Matteo and Andrea.
Good market on a Friday. Don't eat breakfast before going..
Tip for getting around. Buy the unlimited travel ticket - 20 Euros hop on/off anywhere around the lake on large, comfortable ships. For visiting the islands, buy a 3 island ticket with entries included. Isola Madre better in many ways than Isola Bella.
For Gelata, there are several shops in the square and on the promenade. Best coffee near hotel residence on the front. The locals meet there. Great cakes.