Blue waters and mountain vistas
Italy’s largest lake (its vast size will impress even the hard-to-please) is a vision of deep-blue waters and grey-green mountains. Impossibly pretty villages line its edges, each with its own individual look and feel.
At the northern tip of the lake is sporty Riva del Garda, famous for its windsurfing. Skirt down the west coast and you’ll quickly reach lovely Limone, which sprawls around a truly scenic harbour. Take the road down the eastern shore instead and you’ll soon hit Malcesine, home to an impressive medieval castle.
Carry on south and you’ll reach Bardolino, famous for its vineyards (which produce delicious reds) and annual wine festival. Sirmione marks the southern point of the lake – here, you’ll find natural thermal bath, a waterfront castle and some of the lake’s best gelaterias.
Exploring is easy – ferries chug all around the lake, and there are regular bus routes travelling up and down the coast.
Flights to the Italian Lakes take around 2 hours from the UK.
Transfer time from Verona airport to Lake Garda is approximately 1 hour.
The Italian Lakes are at their best between April and October. June, July and August see temperatures soar to the high 20s (perfect for swimming and sunbathing), while the slightly cooler temperatures in April, May, September and October are ideal for those who want to spend a bit more time walking, cycling or sightseeing.
British citizens do not currently require a visa to visit Italy.
When you dine out in Italy, you will generally be charged a coperto (cover charge), which is for the bread, tablecloth, cutlery, etc. Tipping in Italy is not customary, but is always appreciated.
The official language of Italy is Italian. English is widely spoken too, so getting by is easy.