HAVE TO KNOW THAT …
The right name of Isola dei Pescatori is Isola Superiore
dei Pescatori because it was the first to be inhabited;
in fact in a bishop ordinance dated 1627 our island was called Insella
or Insula Superior to distinguish itself from the near Insula Inferior
(Isola Bella) which was uninhabited.
This is the only gulf island which doesn’t belong to
The Isola Pescatori is a typical inhabited village but its origins
are very old; you can discover them by visiting the little church
where its history is illustrated.
RESIDENTS OF ISOLA PESCATORI
In Isola Pescatori about fifty people live all over the year. The
peculiar way of life creates a spontaneous solidarity among the
residents if necessary.
Fishing, once the main activity, is still practiced by some families
keeping an old and charming activity. If you are lucky you can find
a fisherman refitting his nets on the shore. Marks of this old trade
can be found everywhere in the “coda”: the strip of
land planted with trees at the side of the island. Here you can
find some iron elements once used as rests to spread the nets; near
the little harbor, where the fishing boats are moored, there are
the remains of a boiler once used to dye the nets because their
colors changed according to the use.
The Isola Pescatori is inhabited by lots of cats.
They are perfectly integrated in this quiet place without dangers,
they are looking for a good morsel and some of them stretch their
necks waiting for a scratching.
In winter they are closely near one to the other to protect themselves
from the biting cold.
When the air becomes warmer frogs wake up and begin
their activities. You can find them numerous and unmoved down the
street-lamps during summer hot evenings catching an appetizing gnat
with their tongues. In July there are lots of little frogs (tall
as a bean) invading the streets, toddling and jumping everywhere
happy to be born.
Walking along you can find seagulls, wild ducks
and pair of swans with their broods. In summer
there are swallows restoring their nests and preparing
themselves to the miracle of new births.
Another phenomenon that periodically takes place (in autumn and
spring) is deep water. In consequence of rich rains the lake level
rises and water floods the promenade till the first houses. However
these old dwelling places were built using wisdom because their
thresholds are in the inner little streets in an higher lever to
Rivers and streams after abounding rains bring to the lake big logs
and dried vegetation.. If this can be an obstacle to navigation
it’s a precious opportunity for the inhabitants because the
wood is a great resource in winter time (natural gas arrived in
the island only in 2002).
Island people keep their own traditional feasts. The most important
one is “Ferragosto” when in the evening a lighted procession
of fishermen boats bring the Holy Mary “Assunta” statue
around the island. The previous evening in the “coda”
a great bonfire lightens the night.
In Carnival time a long table is prepared on the shore where the inhabitants
can taste “polenta” and a good glass of wine.
In Epiphany night eve all the children are busy to wake up the “befana”
with the “carga vegia”. They run through the island trailing
tins, stock-pots, covers and making noise.
In winter snow creates an evocative atmosphere through the island
even if this event happens only few days a year.
As all islands Isola Pescatori is exposed to “four wind”
which names are connecting to their origins. The Mergozzo comes
from the near homonymous lake and hits the western side; the Maggiore
impetuously blows from Switzerland upon western side; the Inverna
is opposite to Mergozzo, it lightly ripples the lake and brings
If you wish to swim or to lie in the sun you can find a nice beach
in the “coda”: you can relax yourself upon the plane-trees
shadow or swim in fresh water looking at some little fishes!