Surrounded by three distinct regions – Lombardy, Trentino Alto-Adige and Veneto – Lake Garda, just 30 minutes from Verona, is Italy’s largest lake and one of the most important tourist destinations in Italy. This landmark attracts millions of visitors thanks to its mild climate all year round, its old-fashioned atmosphere and its breathtaking scenery. Scenic roads stretch along the coast from which you can admire Renaissance villas, Romanesque hamlets and small villages.
FOR NATURE LOVERS AND SPORTS ENTHUSIASTS
Characterized by Mediterranean vegetation, colours and scents reminiscent of the sea, Lake Garda is surrounded by picturesque villages, seaside resorts, historical remains, ports, parks and nature reserves. Lake Garda is the perfect place to satisfy nature lovers, those who want to discover places rich in history and culture, but also the more sporty who can enjoy trekking, excursions and above all, thanks to the constant winds, water sports.
THE PICTURESQUE VILLAGES OF GARDA
Some of the most famous resorts include Sirmione, the favourite destination of the poet Catullus and Maria Callas, with its splendid Rocca Scaligera, Gardone Riviera, with the Vittoriale degli Italiani, the house-museum of the poet Gabriele D’Annunzio, Peschiera del Garda, with its 16th-century fortress and ramparts.
Not far from Verona, we find Bardolino, a lively centre with its typical labyrinth of alleyways, shops, bars, restaurants and nightclubs, and Garda, where it is worth visiting the Pieve di Santa Maria in Garda, one of the oldest religious buildings in the area, which has a beautiful 15th-century cloister and some 15th-century frescoes.
PRESTIGIOUS SIGNS OF THE PAST
Lovers of architecture should not miss the famous Garda villas, including the 16th-century Villa Guarienti, which stands at the centre of the San Vigilio promontory, with its Italian-style garden and lemon house built in Venetian Gothic style, and Villa Albertini surrounded by an immense park stretching over the hill behind it, in a riot of Mediterranean fauna.
History and archaeology enthusiasts should not miss the rock engravings in the Torri del Benaco area. Engraved on a rock that has become a sort of natural blackboard due to glaciation, there are graffiti from various eras, mostly dating back to prehistoric times.
TASTING FOOD SPECIALTIES
The area is also characterised by the production of excellent wine and olive oil. In fact, the Garda area is the guardian of extraordinary culinary and enogastronomic excellence, and is home to red radicchio, Vialone Nano rice, Lessinia cheeses, fish and Garda olive oil, as well as Pandoro and Amarone della Valpolicella, all typical products that will satisfy even the most demanding traveller.
HOW TO ENJOY A DAY OF FUN
Last but not least, the nearby Gardaland, one of Italy’s largest amusement parks, boasts some of the country’s most famous attractions, including roller coasters, simulators and theme parks designed to attract visitors of all ages (www.gardaland.it).