In my teens, my family and I took a holiday in the north of Italy, exploring the lakes and visiting nearby villages, towns and cities. Around fifteen years later, I was lucky enough to spend half a year living in the north of Italy with the mountains and lakes at my doorstep, meaning I got to take a second, closer look at the lakes. Here are some suggestions on what to see around Lake Garda based on one of my favourite experiences from my time there.

Starting Out – Brescia to Salò or Desenzano

In February 2017, I hired a turquoise-coloured toothpaste tube with an engine and drove around an even bluer lake. It was a beautiful day and the views were something else.

P1080209P1080218

For my own convenience, I hired the car from Europcar in Brescia. From their offices, it was a relatively straightforward drive to Lake Garda – I followed signs to Salò, the town from which I had decided to start my lap.

Note – New visitors to Lake Garda may wish to drive east and begin in Desenzano del Garda, which is definitely worth a visit. I decided to omit Desenzano from this drive, however, as it is conveniently located on the Milan-Verona train line and I had already been there for a long walk!

P1080212P1080216

In Salò, aim to get to the lake’s coast as soon as possible and start driving north towards Limone. Naturally, there are numerous places to stop, take photographs and marvel at the mountains. The drive itself requires a little concentration though as the roads are often a little narrower, at the foot of a hill, and hug the lake side. When you come across a new view or beauty spot that you wish to photograph, simply make a mental note and one of the multiple parking spots should not be far ahead.

Limone Sul Garda

An extremely popular little town with tourists in the summer, Limone is somewhat empty in the off-peak months. As this visit took place in February, a number of restaurants were closed. It should still, however, be a stop on your journey.

P1080225

Limone, unsurprisingly, takes its name from one of its most prolific products: lemons! These can be seen growing in multiple places, and with Limone sitting at the foot of some of the rockier-faced mountains, there are multiple opportunities to take some stunning photographs.

P1080221P1080230 Free parking was available here and this location was ideal for a quick walk into the old town.

P1080237.jpg

P1080240.jpg

Riva del Garda

Not much further north is one of Garda’s most popular towns: Riva. Parking was easy to find as you enter the town here and is again an easy walk away from the town centre.

P1080251.jpg

Riva will most likely take a little longer to explore on foot as there are plenty of little streets to wander up and get lost in. For this reason, I chose Riva as a spot for some lunch.

P1080252P1080253

Viale Dante Alighieri is a good place to find shops and places to eat.

P1080255
Looking up Viale Dante Alighieri

P1080257.jpg

From Riva, head east towards and through Torbole.

Suggested Viewpoint

The ‘Mirador’ located here offers great views looking over the northern part of Lake Garda. It’s easy to drive up and back down from Torbole.

P1080263.jpg

Head back down towards Torbole and further south to our next stop, Malcesine.

P1080268P1080271

Malcesine

Famous for its castle, cable car and some other things not beginning with ‘c’, Malcesine is definitely worth a stop. Plenty of ideally-located parking can be found here.

P1080277P1080279

Malcesine is another town well worth exploring thoroughly. From its harbour and castle to its antique streets, Malcesine is everything that Lake Garda is about.

P1080281P1080289P1080292P1080297

The castle can also be entered for an extra cost.

P1080294P1080299

The journey down the eastern side of the lake is just as beautiful as the west. As you near the south again, you’ll pass Gardaland, which is basically Italy’s answer to Disney. Kind of.

Peschiera del Garda

The final leg of this lap of Garda is Peschiera.

P1080309.jpg

Parking is again very easy to find and is located here. Having fully been around one of Europe’s most beautiful lakes, why not treat yourself to a Gelato? (I did not usually need an excuse.)

P1080311P1080315

Advertisements

Written by amirrorofmind

https://amirrorofmind.com

One comment

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s