Is Lake Garda Worth Visiting?

Idyllically poised in Northern Italy between Venice and Milan, Lake Garda is the largest and arguably the most captivating of the Italian lakes. Known for its crystal clear turquoise waters ringed by quaint medieval towns, lush Mediterranean vegetation, and rugged hills blanketed with vineyards and olive groves, Lake Garda is the epitome of Italian charm. Renowned for its views, climate, and myriad watersports activities ranging from sailing to windsurfing, Lake Garda is a haven for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts alike. Visitors particularly gravitate to this Italian jewel to frolic in its thermal spas, visit ancient Roman villas and medieval castles, relish in local gastronomy, and even experience the thrill of nearby theme parks. Notably, the lake also provides a source of inspiration for artists and writers like Goethe, Lawrence, and Joyce, making it an important destination in the cultural itinerary of Europe.

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Travel experiences

Overall rating

4.2 /5

based on 3 experiences

Rating summary

Things to do

4.2/5

Safety

4.2/5

Food

4.2/5

Budget-friendly

3/5
Emma

Emma (29)

United Kingdom

Solo travel experience

I would highly reccomend a visit to Lake Garda. It was very safe, at no points did I feel uneasy or encounter any behaviour or instances which would cause concern. Restaurants, transport, general public were all very friendly and helpful. I've stayed in both Desenzano del Garda and Peschiera del Garda and both were easy to reach by train and gave you great access to travel across the lake to see other towns. They were also beautiful towns in their own right to explore and spend time in. When I stayed in Desenzano del Garda I stayed at Hotel Europa, lovely rooms, staff and breakfast. I stayed for two nights then moved on to Milan and Lake Como afterwards. Desenzano has a lot of food options so would reccomend you wander round and see what menu and view you like the look of. Day one I explored the town and took the bus to Sirmione (buses are a little confusing and don't run to times so would reccomend you take the boat that is a couple euros more expensive but takes half the time and sticks to schedule). Day two I did a boat trip across the lake, I bought the whole lake ticket for around €30-35 as knew I wanted to see Riva at the top of the lake and planned to stop at Garda and Malcensine on the way there and back respectively. Do not visit the lakes without taking a trip to see the other towns, the views from the boats which have upper deck outside seating are amazing. I suggest starting your day early as the boats do get busier throughout the day and you may get stuck sat inside or if you go for the faster service some people were also standing. When I visited Peschiera I was with my partner and we did another boat trip and saw Limone, Lazize and Salo.... My only regret that day was the fast boat service was overcrowded so couldn't run at speed so instead of having a couple hours to explore Limone we had barely 50mins. Limone was stunning (like all the towns I've visited on Lake Garda) and we found a cafe called House of Lemonade & Spritz in a wall selling pizza and limoncello spritz so walked around whilst also enjoying the food and drinks!

Posted: January 7, 2024Experienced: May, 2022
Things to do: 5/5Food: 5/5Budget-friendly: 3/5Safety: 5/5
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Solo travel experience

Lake Garda is wonderful and in my opinion better than Como. It was less crowded, and the ferries were better. I spent 4 days there and I definitely could spend at least one more day there to explore more lakeside towns.

Posted: April 30, 2023
Things to do: 5/5Food: 5/5Budget-friendly: 4/5Safety: 5/5
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