EXCURSIONS

Venice

the excursions leave just after 7 am and the whole day is dedicated to the Lagoon city with its stunning monuments and buildings.  The price of the trip includes the private boat which takes you to the center of the city, i.e. San Marco square and back. You will have a couple of hours to stroll around the ‘calle’ and breath the Venetian atmosphere on your own.

TOUR AROUND THE LAKE
You can do this tour by bus.  As you sit higher than in the car, you have a better view of the lake and its surroundings.
However, you can strike out on your own in which case we would suggest the following: drive south from Limone towards Toscolano Maderno from there you take the ferry to Torri del Benaco. Stop in Torri for a visit, but go further south to Punta San Vigilio to drink your cappuccino at the little harbour. San Vigilio Point is worth a visit, a tiny community where the time has stopped. From there you could head south to visit Garda, Bardolino and Lazise, but in Lazise you should head towards the hills to Costermano, famous for the cemetery of the first world war, a huge hill scattered with white crosses. Follow the signpost towards San Zeno di Montagna, this is a very panoramic road that leads you to Brenzone and  back on to the Gardesana lake shore.  Head back to Limone via Malcesine, Torbole and Riva, or, if you are tired, take the ferry back from Malcesine to Limone.

VERONA
this city used to be the realm of the Scaligeri family during the Renaissance, but Verona was founded by the Romans. A visit to the Arena in the huge main square “Piazza Bra” is a must. The main shopping center and other historic monuments are nearby, all within walking distance. Verona is a city that deserves to be explored on foot. There is something lovely to see round each street corner.
Our travel agency also organizes trips to the ARENA OPERA FESTIVAL.  Verdi’s Aida is a great favourite, it goes on until midnight, so coming back by bus might be a good idea. If you decide to do VERONA BY YOURSELF, take the motorway from Rovereto sud to Verona sud. The drive into town is one straight road and when you reach the ancient walls, again straight ahead around the Porta Nuova. There are several parking areas beyond there. From here you reach the historic center of Verona:  walk under the arch with the big clock and you come out in the Piazza Bra with the Roman Arena. From this point many roads fan out, but walk down the Via Mazzini to visit Romeo and Juliet’s balcony, the Piazza Erbe where there is a fruit and vegetable market, and off this square is the Piazza dei Signori (which many locals call Piazza Dante because of his statue in the middle of the square), a beautiful square surrounded by important buildings. From here you can reach Santa Anastasia Church, a good example of Italian Gothic of the XIIth century and in its beginning was devoted to the Arian cult. However this building is famous for its dwarfs, humpbacked statues, holding the holy water in the main  entrance, but especially for the famous painting by Pisanello of Saint George and the Princess. From this point you are on the Adige River. The Ponte Pietra bridge leads to the Anfiteatro Romano, the most ancient Roman Amphitheatre still in existence and at certain times of the year there are  performances of Shakespeare plays. Castel San Pietro is now within easy reach from where you can enjoy a panoramic view of Verona with its ancient roofs. After that spoil yourself with a dinner at the Re Teodorico Restaurant and you will have, on a beautiful terrace, the whole of Verona’s history in front of you.

ISOLA DEL GARDA
we suggest that the best way to visit the island is to go there by yourself and read the story on the island by Ghita Beltrami as told on this website. Usually you can visit the island on a Tuesday and Thursday.  Go to Barbarano  harbour where parking is free of charge. From there boats leave to the island at 9.30 am and bring you back at 12.30. The island is worth a visit not only for its historic building but also for the huge park, the landscape is uncontaminated and is beautiful at night. However, nighttime visits are only possible during one of the concerts organized by Milena: check  the website www.culturainmusicalimes.com.  Alternatively, contact Milena to find out when a concert is planned so that you can book your stay at the Rodella family’s Hotel Riviera in Limone.

Venice by night
organized by the same travel agency.
This is a much appreciated and very romantic choice.
If you decide to go to Venice on your own, we advise to leave very early in the morning: 5 a.m. and reach the car park in Piazzale Roma by 7 am.  If you arrive in the centre by 8 am,  taking the Vaporetto (public transport), the atmosphere of Venice is much more natural and there are not too many tourists around yet. Take the Vaporetto to the Rialto bridge, and from there you can easily walk to San Marco as the main square is signposted very well. If you get there early, you will avoid the queue in the Dom, at the Palazzo Ducale, which was the Doge’s main residence for hundreds of years, the San Marco Tower and the Museum Correr of Glass. These main buildings are all situated in San Marco.

MILANO
The travel agency provides interesting tours to Milan that allow you to visit not only the city center but also the surrounding area with the Monumental cemetery and the Navigli area.  2015 is the Expo year for Milan, so it might be worth visiting the city.
If you decide to go on your own, it is better to go by train from Desenzano to Milan. From there take a bus to the city center which means the Dom square with Milan’s Cathedral. From this point you can easily walk to the Sforzesco Castle, the Vittorio Emanuele Gallery, La Scala, Via della Spiga and Via Montenapoleone where you will find the most famous Italian fashion houses. The museum of Modern art is now in the middle of Milan, just in front of the Dom, it is worth a visit just to have a look at the huge painting: Pellizza da Volpedo’s ‘the Fourth State’

WINE TOURS
The travel agency takes you to Val Lagarina, to the Grigoletti family who have an historic cellar which is worth the visit for its ‘basilica’-like ancient construction and taste the most important wines from Trentino. After that you will be taken north to the Ferrari estates that produce one of the most important Italian brut sparkling white wines, made according to the champagne method.
You could decide to visit other wine producers that are located in the Lombardy area. You could visit a small producer such as Cascina Belmonte, above the hills of Salò in an area called Muscoline. This small, young and first generation wine grower produces his own organic wine, a red Rebo called ‘Singia’, a Merlot called ‘Stramonia’, but especially a Chiaretto called Vie en Rose. All these can be tasted at the bar of the Hotel Riviera and are really worth a journey. There are also many wine producers in the Bardolino area and in the hills towards Verona called the Valpolicella area.  You can also visit the Franciacorta area which produces a very prestigious Italian sparkling wine. It is really worth to stop in Erbusco at the Osteria Dispensa dei Vini, have some lunch washed down with a Camosso Saten, a Cà del Bosco or a Bellavista Brut, or be advised by the somellier

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