After a consultation with it’s 50 members the Tourist Coop of Valtenesi has produced this list of the top ten attractions in a Lake Garda holiday.

This beautiful little private island is steeped in a history which includes kings, queens and emperors, St Francis of Assisi, Dante Alighieri and Benito Mussolini. Until recently it was only possible to view the magical island from a boat, but now guided tours run from April through to October. Click here for more information.

Three of Italys 20 wine producing regions have borders on Lake Garda each of which uses grape varieties that are very localised, and so a diverse range of red, white and rose wine is available . The wine produced in the Lake Garda region is exceptional quality and the wine producers love to show it off. Anyone visiting Lago di Garda, whether an enthusiast or just with a passing interest should not let their holidays pass without visiting at least one of the many wine cellars. Click here for a details of the cantina’s. Click here to find out about wine tasting every Thursday evening at a cantina in Portese. Wine tasting tour in the Trentino wine region.

The water of Lake Garda is clean, clear and fresh and just the tonic on a hot Lake Garda summer day. There are beaches in all the towns around the lake, each with their own unique atmosphere, each with different different things going on. Some are very quiet where you can just lay out and relax and top up your tan, maybe a dive off the jetty when you need to cool down; some with water-sports, pedalo’s and kayaks, and some with music bars if you fancy it a bit more lively. My personal favourites are Salo, where at the end of the day I like to sip my apertivo and watch the sun slip down behind the mountains, or Portese, which has a pretty little port and a fantastic fish restaurant.
For anyone with a passing inteerst in history, for anyone who enjoys walking, for anyone who is interested in nature and ecology, or for anyone who just enjoys a beautiful views, the Rock of Manerba is a place you have to visit. Recently designated a nature parkLa Rocca has a visitors center where you can learn about it’s history and find out information about the sentieri that run through the park. Click here for more information 
The landscape around Lake Garda is a mountain bikers paradise and offers something for everyone. Extreme sportsmen will love to tackle the mountains to the north, but the gentle rolling hills further south are perfect for those seeking something less strenuous. A cycle ride is the perfect way to explore the countryside and villages, the art and the history, the food and the wine. Click here for information. For more ideas on cycle routes visit bresciainbici, piste-ciclabili and stradadeivini. 
The aperitivo original concept was a pre-meal drink taken to stimulate the appetite, and that still may be the case for traditional Italians or those not living in areas of tourism. But walk through any town around Lake Garda at any time from 11 in the morning until late into the evening, you will see people sitting outside the cafe’s and bars enjoying their aperitivo. It is easy to spot because the most popular aperitivo is the Pirlo, a brightly orange or red coloured drink, which is a a spritz made with Aperol(orange) or Campari(red), prossecco and sparkling water (with ice and a slice of orange). My favourite place to take my aperitivo is Cafe Bloom in Salo, but wherever you are in Lake Garda you have to try this Italian tradition.)
Lake Garda is populated by a large number of medieval castles, the most famous being Castello degli Scaliger in Sirmione which is considered one of the most important moated castles in Europe. Another well know castle is in Malcesine, others include Castello di Polpenazze, Castello di Soiano, Castello di Puegnago, Castello di Pozzolengo, Castello di Sirmione, Castello di Lazise, Castello di Torri del Benaco, Castello di Desenzano,  Rocca di Lonato, and Castello di Padenghe.
Lake Garda is surrounded by beautiful country side and there is no better way to see it than on horse back. There a many riding stables scattered around the lake such as morso46 in Gavardo, which also has an agriturismo so you could visit there and cross 8 and 9 off your list of the top 10 things to do in Lake Garda
The true meaning of an agriturismo is an Italian farm, although it may not be a farm with animals or a farm that grows crops, it could be a wine farm or an olive farm. Agriturismo’s usually offer accommodation and food at a very good rate, in most cases you don’t need to be a resident to enjoy the food in the restaurant. An agriturismo is the perfect place to enjoy home-cooked traditional food, so next time you see a sign don’t drive by… in.
Thanks to the mild climate olive oil has been produced in the region since the days of the Romans and it is a little known fact that Lake Garda produces some of the best olive oil in the world. The best quality oil is given the DOP accreditation, which requires that the full process from growing the olives to putting the label on the bottle has taken place in the local area. The olive oil must also meet strict characteristics regarding the smell, taste, colour and acidity. By visiting one of the many oil mills in the region you will not only get to taste the sumptuous Lake Garda oil but also gain a comprehensive insight into olive oil production.
20 Places To Visit Lake Garda

Is your favourite attraction in Lake Garda on the list? If not we would love to hear from you in the comments box below……

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About the Author:

I have been visiting Lake Garda since 1998 and have grown to love the region so much that when I come here it is like coming home. Needless to say I am very familiar with the region and I would like to share what I know with you. As you may from my pages my particular passions are the local food and wine.