The largest resort on Lago di Garda (Lake Garda) is Desenzano del Garda on the south western shore, which is within easy reach of Bergamo.
Desenzano is a lively town with plenty to see and do and some up-market fashion shops. It is also well served by good restaurants, bars and hotels.
You can enjoy sweeping views of the lake if you walk along Lungolago Cesare Battisti (above) or you can climb the steep streets away from the lake to explore the town.
It takes about an hour to reach Desenzano from Bergamo by car. Leave the A4 Autostrada at the Desenzano exit and head for the centre where there are several car parks.
It also takes about an hour by train, with a change at Brescia, and it is then a short walk, or bus or taxi ride, from the station to Piazza Matteotti in the centre of Desenzano.
A Servizio di Navigazione (boat service) operates from Desenzano to other resorts on Lago di Garda such as Sirmione, Bardolino, Peschiera and Moniga del Garda.
There are plenty of bars and restaurants around the port as well as at the Porto Vecchio (old harbour), which is a short walk away.
Desenzano’s Ufficio di Informazione Turistico (Tourist Information Office) is located there.
The Romans apparently enjoyed holidays in Desenzano and, in 1921, the remains of a fourth century Roman villa were unearthed close to the lake. These are now open to the public and can be accessed from Via Antonio Gramsci.
There is also a medieval castle within walking distance of the lake in Via Castello.
The Duomo, which is dedicated to Santa Maria Maddalena, in Piazza Duomo, off Via Mazzini, is full of art treasures, which includes an 18th century version of The Last Supper by Giambattista Tiepolo.
A MAGICAL PLACE
Bergamo’s beautiful upper town, the Città Alta (pictured above), is a magical place well worth visiting. Use this website to help you plan your trip to Bergamo in Northern Italy and find your way to some of the other lovely towns and villages in Lombardia that are perhaps less well known to tourists.