isole del Lago di Garda

Lake Garda Islands

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Lake Garda, an authentic natural jewel set amidst the mountains of northern Italy, is famous for the beauty of its panoramas and its incomparable suggestiveness.

Hidden among its waters are five enchanting islands that add a further touch to this dreamlike landscape.

The 5 islands of Lake Garda:

Isola del Sogno

Isola del Sogno takes its name from the nearby Val di Sogno, near Malcesine on the Veronese shore of Lake Garda.

During certain times of the year, when the lake level drops, causing the shoals to emerge, it can be reached on foot: it is only 20 metres from the shore.

Undoubtedly this access, as unusual as it is temporary, adds a note of adventure to the exploration of the island.

What makes Isola del Sogno truly unique, however, is, as is often the case, what lies beneath the surface: for diving enthusiasts, it is famous for the wreck that lies about 40 metres below the surface. Sunk in 1987 and about 16 metres long, it offers an exciting opportunity for underwater exploration.

There are two ways to reach the wreck: The first is by following the chain to which it is anchored. This route offers an adventurous experience reserved for experienced divers, who can admire the details of the wreck and be fascinated by the marine life that surrounds it.

The second way consists of referring to the guide line of the wing. This option is also accessible to less experienced divers, allowing them to follow a more direct route to the wreck.

le migliori spiagge del lago di garda

Olive Island

Located along the route to Malcesine on the Veronese shore, Isola dell’Olivo emerges as an iconic landmark during the famous ‘Centomiglia’ sailing regatta on Lake Garda.

The island’s smooth rocks offer peaceful spots where one can lie in the sun, completely immersing oneself in the beauty of a landscape that is nothing short of delightful.

Here too, as on Isola del Sogno, the seabed offers a hidden treasure loved by divers from all over the world: at a depth of about 13 metres, one can explore a small cave, rich in lake plants and fauna. The cave extends to a depth of up to 30 metres, offering explorers the chance to discover the wonders hidden in the depths of the lake.

isole lago di garda

Garda Island

Near San Felice del Benaco, on the Brescia side of the lake, lies Isola del Garda, the largest of the five islands of the lake, from which it takes its name.

Also known as Isola Borghese, it is privately owned and accessible only by reservation and accompanied by an authorised guide.

In the past it was a refuge for pirates who plundered boats on the lake, while later it became a religious centre, hosting a Franciscan monastery founded by St Francis of Assisi himself and St Bernardino of Siena. However, the arrival of Napoleon Bonaparte marked the end of the monastic period.

Today, the island is the home of the Counts Cavazza of Bologna.

At the centre of the island stands a magnificent villa in neo-Gothic-Venetian style, built in the late 19th century and surrounded by lush gardens with a wide variety of local, exotic and rare plants.

Guided tours of Isola del Garda offer a complete experience that not only allows visitors to explore its natural beauty, but also to immerse themselves in its rich culture: Pierangelo Capretti’s watercolour works depicting the park and the villa enrich the rooms open to the public, offering a privileged insight into the island’s history and art.

In addition, a rich cultural calendar offers a series of musical events taking place in the garden, offering visitors the opportunity to enjoy performances in an extraordinary setting.

cosa vedere a san felice del benaco
cosa vedere a san felice del benaco

Island of San Biagio

Along the Brescian shore of Lake Garda, near Manerba del Garda stands the Island of San Biagio, also known as Isola dei Conigli.

This natural paradise, privately owned but accessible for a fee, is a unique place that offers a perfect combination of relaxation and underwater adventures.

One of the distinctive features of San Biagio Island is its relaxed and welcoming atmosphere. Here, visitors can enjoy soaking up the sun on rentable sun loungers while refreshing themselves with a cool drink at the island bar.

 

However, what really makes this place special are, not surprisingly, its ‘furry inhabitants’: numerous rabbits that roam freely on the island and are now an integral part of its identity. Accustomed to human presence, these friendly animals add a sweet touch to the visit.

Another peculiarity of San Biagio Island is its accessibility: during periods when the water level is particularly low, it is in fact possible to reach the island on foot through a strip of seabed that connects it to the mainland. Alternatively, a paid taxi-boat service is available for those who prefer to reach it by water.

The underwater world of the island attracts scuba diving enthusiasts: the Scoglio dell’Altare, one of the most renowned dive sites on Lake Garda, offers an extraordinary experience. The wall descends to a depth of 150 metres, offering adventurers the chance to discover the vast world of local aquatic fauna such as perch, pike, tench, eel and bleak.

isola lago di garda
isola lago di garda

Trimelone Island

Facing the shore of Assenza di Brenzone sul Garda, Veneto, lies Trimelone Island, a place that conceals a troubled history intertwined with the tumultuous events of Italy’s 20th century.

Seemingly insignificant, this small island has witnessed crucial moments in Italian history, from the two World Wars to the ‘Years of Lead’.

Before the ‘Great War’, Trimelone Island was a strategic war outpost, positioned along the border with the Austro-Hungarian Empire, stretching as far as Navene.

During the Second World War, the island and surrounding waters were turned into a war dump, with Wehrmacht, Italian and American troops pouring weapons and explosives into the area between Malcesine and Riva.

However, the real tragedy struck in 1954, when an accidental explosion caused the destruction of half the island and a fire that lasted for three days.

In more recent times, more than 25,000 pieces of ordnance have been removed, helping to make the area safer for future generations.

Today, Trimelone Island is an oasis of peace and tranquillity for local flora and fauna that live and nest undisturbed.

Despite its natural beauty, Trimelone Island remains a potentially dangerous place, so there is a complete ban on landing, docking, fishing and approaching due to the still significant presence of war material.

Therefore, the best way to admire the island remains on board a sailing boat so as to get just close enough to safely observe the spectacle of this wild and mysterious island.

The enchanting islands of Lake Garda are hidden treasures that offer an unforgettable experience of breathtaking scenery, history and unique opportunities for relaxation. All that remains is to indulge in the pleasure of discovering them and let yourself be surprised by an unforgettable journey.
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