Lake Garda Holidays
Lake Garda View breaks >>
The Italian Lakes, cradled in the arms of pre-Alpine mountains, are among the world's greatest travel destinations, and have been since the Romans built summer villas here. European royalty followed, gilding the lakes with a glamour that remains untarnished today. The biggest lake of Garda is best known as a vacation spot, with a string of campsites around its southern shore and its beautiful beaches and water sports have made it haven for sun-seeking tourists.
Scaliger CastleThis 13th century castle built by the lords of Verona stands at the port of Sirmione, complete with a lake-filled moat and an intricate ring of walls that protected supply ships. The walls are topped by fishtail battlements, the trademark of the Scaligeri.
Il VittorialeAn extraordinary complex constructed by Gabriele d'Annunzio, regarded as one of Italy's most flamboyant characters. It is a collection of buildings, many in art nouveau style, and a grand open-air theatre.
SirmioneA finger of land so narrow that it seems like an unfeasible site for a town, and a castle from a Hollywood film set combine to create this fairy-tale village. Just offshore lies a gushing thermal spring, creating the perfect bathing temperatures.
Grotto of CatullusThe ruins of this ancient Roman bath house are named after the great poet Catallus who has a villa here. The allusion to Catallus may be fanciful but the ruins are worth visiting. The small museum holds all of the local Roman finds.
Lonato FortressJust outside the picturesque town of Desenzano is the huge medieval fortress of Lonato, set on a hilltop with panoramic views of Lake Garda. At the bottom of the hill lies a 15th century nobleman's house with beautiful frescoes and paintings.
Villa RomanaThe excavated remains of a third or fourth-century villa featuring more than 200 square metres of mosaic, depicting hunting scenes and scenes of everyday life. There is a small museum where the best excavated finds are displayed.