Lago di Garda

Posted by Matthew Daub – Arts Sojourn
On the various internet travel forums I often see questions from travelers who want to visit the Italian lakes. The majority seem to be interested in Lake Como, followed closely by Maggiore. Lago di Garda, Italy’s largest lake, is often overlooked or dismissed. Garda is certainly not lacking for tourism; it has been a favorite of European travelers for years, but does not seem to appear on most American tourists’ radar screens.

The southern end of Lake Garda is pleasant enough. It has the lake’s only train station in Desenzano del Garda on the Milan/Venice line, and Sirmione, with its Roman era baths, is a relatively popular stop for American tourists, but the real beauty of Garda is found on the northern end. The topography is flat and the lake itself is broad down south, but it narrows to the north and the deep fjord-like waters are bordered by pre-alpine mountains on all sides. The roads around Garda can get quite congested, and even the speediest hydrofoils can take hours to travel the length of the lake, but for those so inclined the north end of Garda is well worth the effort.


Matthew Daub is a professional artist and university professor with works in major public and private collections throughout the United States and Europe. He has been leading plein air painting workshops in Italy since 1994. In 1999, Matthew and his wife Barbara formed Arts Sojourn as “a vacation for artists and their friends.” The program is designed to appeal to artists of all levels as well as non-artists who enjoy the company of creative people in a slow travel format.

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