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The incredible city of Venice, floating on the sea, is one of the great wonders of the world. You’ll spend much of your time in this city dashing from one amazing sight to another. Lake Garda in the heart of Italy’s dramatic north, is the country’s largest lake and also home to some of the country’s most tranquil landscapes. Combined, the unique city of Venice and the stunning Lake Garda are a delightful double act offering excitement and relaxation in equal measure.
Inghams Italy recommends:
Where to stay? The Hotel Amadeus 4*
A classic and comfortable 4-star hotel only a short walk from the Grand Canal and Venice train station. You will have ready access to the sights of Venice and the terraced garden is a pleasant corner where you can escape the bustle of the city.
What to do?
If it’s your first time in Venice, you should certainly visit St Mark’s Square and take a gondola ride on the Grand Canal. It’s touristy and on the front cover of every guidebook but trust us, they’re iconic for a reason. The amazing sights will stick in your mind forever.
We strongly recommend making your way out onto the Venetian lagoon to experience some of the lesser known islands, such as Murano, Burano and Torcello. These hidden gems are easily accessed by public boat, and their fascinating history, local crafts and architecture rewards exploration.
Venice has a strong art history. The Gallerie dell’Accademia houses an important collection of Venetian painting and is one of our favourite museums in the city. The gallery houses many works by influential Venetian artists including Bellini, Tintoretto, Titian and Canaletto.
Desenzano, Lake Garda, 4-nights
Where to stay? The Hotel Piroscafo 3*
This delightful little hotel in Desenzano overlooks the picturesque old harbour. It is ideally located for a short stay, surrounded by a wealth of excellent cafés, bars and restaurants, and a short walk from the ferry terminal.
What to do?
Sampling the local food and drink is a highlight of any holiday to Italy, and Lake Garda is no different. With its wealth of markets there’s no excuse not to try the fresh, local delicacies. Desenzano’s market takes place every Tuesday and sells everything from clothes and flowers to local cheeses and other produce.
A boat trip across the south of Lake Garda to the majestic peninsula town of Sirmione makes for a fascinating day trip. Sirmione is brimming with history, from the Roman Grottoes of Catullus to Scaligeri Castle which dominates the town.
The Mediterranean climate of Lake Garda makes it ideal for growing plants from across the world. The Heller Botanical Gardens in Gardone preserves species from as far and wide as the Alps, New Zealand and Africa. Created by artist André Heller, this weird and wonderful garden is like a maze with its fun water features. We recommend heading to the top of the garden for spectacular views across the lake.
How to get around?
The journey is as much a highlight of this multi-centre itinerary as the destinations. Arrive in Venice and let us escort you by water taxi through the maze of canals to your hotel. When you depart for Lake Garda we recommend the train, which will take you direct from Venice to Desenzano.
Our Inghams Italy multi-centre itineraries are holidays tailored to you. If you like what you’ve seen here but want to try something slightly different then call one of our personal Travel Consultants on 01483 345 707.
We will create an Italian holiday which is personal to you.