City Breaks

Published on May 2, 2011 | by Andrea Guerriero


Getting Around Lake Garda – Enjoy a Stop Over in Desenzano

Desenzano del Garda is a charming city of Roman origin at the foot of the moraine hills overlooking the southern shores of Lake Garda, a few kilometers away from Brescia, in Lombardy.

Desenzano del Garda is a lively town of less than 30,000 inhabitants, considered the “capital of the Garda,” a stop-off for anyone vacationing along this shore of the lake, as Sirmione, Padenghe and Peschiera del Garda. Moving through its tiny historic streets is rather easy, a bit less by car, but the reference points seem to be always the same: the Castle on the hill and the small port over the lake.

In addition to the opportunity to relax and benefit from the comforts of a modern city, in Desenzano you can enjoy many excursions to stay in contact with nature while sport enthusiasts can practice windsurfing, mountain biking, or take advantage of the swimming pool and the several sports facilities. Don’t miss the lovely beaches of Desenzanino, Spiaggia d’Oro and Rivoltella.

One of the architectural landmarks of the town is certainly the ancient market square, Piazza Malvezzi, with its graceful arches and where you can admire several sixteenth-century buildings: the Palazzo Comunale, the Palace of the Venetian and the Cathedral – dedicated to Mary Magdalene. Nowadays the square is completely free of traffic and features many shops under the arches and along the nearby streets, particularly suitable for summer shopping, but also for pleasant walks in good company eating roasted chestnuts in the fall and winter afternoons.

Desenzano offers plenty of accommodation options – ranging from luxury hotels to cheaper hostels – but also boasts a lively nightlife, due to the presence of many restaurants and bars which enliven the lakeside and the historical centre.

Evenings may begin with a dinner at one of the best restaurants in the area, the restaurant Esplanade, a refined and intimate place where you can enjoy delicious dishes of fish and choose from a well-stocked cellar.

Moreover, the Teatro Alberti – housed in a former theatre of the XIX century, which still maintains the internal structure divided between stalls and boxes – offers a refined atmosphere and live entertainment to cheer up your evenings.

Aperitifs and after dinners are at Vela Goa, a historic venue in the centre of Desenzano, in Via Annunciata. A trendy but easygoing atmosphere, stone walls and soft lighting, friendly and clever staff, with a large selection of cocktails and drinks and house music in the background. Other venues for your evenings are the Square 16 – which is also a stylish restaurant – and Circus Cafè – just for anyone.

One of the best discos in the area of Lake Garda was recently moved to less than 5 km from Desenzano: the Art Club – very unconventional theme nights every Wednesday, pure fun on weekends.

Photo by storem

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About the Author

Hi, I'm Andrea, a travel blogger, web programmer, seo apprentice and amateur photographer based in Milan. I love reading, I love music. I love to travel but only if I leave on a mission! I've been traveling through most of Europe and I love writing about it. I love photography, especially as a way to document experiences, places, events. My Nikon D300 camera is always with me, and it helps me in sharing my life with the rest of the world. Getting in touch with new people, different life styles and foreign traditions, and write about it, is all I can ask for.

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