This is Lake Garda’s largest town and has been a popular holiday resort since Roman times. According to local folklore the “Desenzano” name is derived from a the name of a Roman legionnaire called Decentium.
The lakefront, which has fantastic views up the lake to the Alps, is full of café/bars and “gelaterie” and there is also a large statue dedicated to Sant’ Angela. There are three large beaches, Desanzanino Beach, Spiagga d’Oro, and Porto Rivoltella Beach, where sunbeds and pedloes are available for rent.
Unlike most of the Lake Garda towns there is a road that follows the lungolago, past the marina and into the historic center of town. The central point of the historic centre is the picturesque Porto Vecchio (see Places to Visit below).
Porto Vecchio is lined with restaurants and bars, which continue into the narrow streets and open piazzas of the town. Desenzano remains lively most of the year due to it’s large population and also popularity with Italians from other towns, who come to the town for shopping and the nightlife.