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Italian Lakes advice

(19 Posts)
whostolethesocks Sun 29-Jan-17 20:43:27

Liking the idea of Italian Lakes this year for a holiday with two teenagers. Don't fancy driving/hiring a car. Does anyone have recommendations of best place to stay (would like to be near lots to see/do and also be able to take trips to Venice/Verona. Is it possible/preferable to book flights/accommodation separately and make our own way to accommodation (how easy is this?) or should we go with a package company? All advice appreciated. Thank you.

Clayhead Sun 29-Jan-17 21:28:37

Peschiera has a small but mainline station which you can use to go to Verona and Venice.

Shesaysso Sun 29-Jan-17 21:33:58

Agree with the above. Definitely Lake Garda with teenagers, and somewhere near the bottom of the Lake for Venice/ Verona trips. Sirmione is also nice and an alternative to Peschiera.
There's a big theme park (Garda Land) in this area too. Which may appeal to the teens one day (even if it doesn't appeal to you😄).

blue2014 Sun 29-Jan-17 21:37:29

Lots of water sports activities at the top of the lake that the teens may like

NotCitrus Sun 29-Jan-17 21:37:33

There's direct buses from Verona to the east side of Garda, takes about 40 minutes. Gardaland and the water park are there. Stayed in Bardolino which is one of the smaller towns, but a slightly larger town might be even better with teens.

Iamastonished Mon 30-Jan-17 12:59:27

Another vote for lake Garda. We have been twice - stayed in Garda the first time and Sirmione the second. You absolutely don't need a car. The best way to explore the lake is to take one of the many ferries that go round the lake.

Lake Garda is probably my favourite holiday destination.

MeganChips Mon 30-Jan-17 13:04:52

We stayed in Peschiera last year, it was a good base without a car. Not as pretty as some of the other towns around the lake but nice enough and plenty to do.

We did trips to Venice and Verona and Milan is easily accessible by train too.

Sirmione is beautiful but you have to get a bus to the end of the peninsula before you can get anywhere near a mainline so slightly trickier.

Public transport is easy and the ferries great but the cost does really add up so definitely plan for that.

LIZS Mon 30-Jan-17 13:05:01

Agree lake Garda is the most suitable for active teens. If they want sailing and windsurfing you really need to base yourselves towards the north of the lake as the south is less windy and suitable (ie. Torbole or Riva). Mountain activities are available at Malcesine. Unfortunately the north end is less accessible by public transport and traffic mid summer on the lake road is very congested, so buses are slow. Cycling is a good option and resorts are linked by boats.

BusterTheBulldog Mon 30-Jan-17 13:17:27

Simione (sp? Quick post, sorry) in lake Garda was lovely. Good ferry station to hop to other places on Garda, and also train station about 5-10 mins in bus taxi which is direct to Verona and also Venice. It's also amazingly beautiful there, definitely recommend!

whostolethesocks Mon 30-Jan-17 19:48:15

Thanks for the comments so far. Peschiera seems like it might be a good option with the possibility of visiting other towns by public transport? Any tips on where to stay there? Did you make your own travel arrangements or go with a travel company? All advice welcome. Thanks.

MeganChips Mon 30-Jan-17 19:59:55

We stayed at the huge Bella Italia eurocamp which I booked through Owners direct.

Flights were seperate to Venice as it was much cheaper than Verona. These were booked through Skyscanner.

The train tickets from Venice to Peschiera were just bought at the station to allow for any flight delays though it's cheaper to book them in advance.

Most of the ferries have a ticket office that you just turn up and pay for.

Pretty easy really smile

DeliveredByKiki Sun 05-Feb-17 02:06:39

following! We're taking younger children (5&8) this summer to Italy, doing Rome for a week, stopping somewhere en route maybe, then want to do Garda or Como before last few days in Venice (flying out of Venice)

I've been more attracted to Como than Garda but Garda is prob better for convenience sake? My two aren't particularly interested in watersports but enjoy going on a boat and hiking.....so a mini hijack, apologies OP!

LIZS Sun 05-Feb-17 08:47:50

Como is much more sedate than Garda, villas and gardens are the main attraction. I think younger children might find Garda more interesting, with its beaches and village squares. Como itself has a small park by the ferry jetties with water fountains but not much else specifically for them.

ReggaeShark Sun 05-Feb-17 08:52:50

We'll be cycling from Lake Garda to Venice via Soave, Verona and a couple of other places with our teenage DS. Bspoketours.com.

DeliveredByKiki Sun 05-Feb-17 16:31:55

Thanks LIZS if the beaches are better at Garda maybe we're better off there, even if I'd rather do Como for the scenery and hiking!

ReggaeShark I'd love to do something like that when my two are older!

ReggaeShark Sun 05-Feb-17 20:48:19

DS was 14 last summer and we did something similar in Croatia. Most teenagers would be fine.

Bejazzled Mon 06-Feb-17 19:36:25

Plenty to do around Peschiera. Train to Verona or Milan, ferries to dot about the other lakeside towns, cable car up Monte Baldo from Malcesine, free buses from the centre bus station to the water park and to Gardaland if you like them, pedaloes and water activities available too.

We've been several times to different places. Peschiera has a great small hotel with direct lake views called the San Marco. Call them direct for the best price and to request a large family room or single room for teenager. Great breakfast and free parking included and even a small pool which isn't common. Easy walk to the town centre.

whostolethesocks Thu 09-Feb-17 17:32:32

Thanks Bejazzled. I've booked a hotel for myself and my teenage son (the one you recommended was full) in Peschiera. I've also booked flights to Verona. Just need to check out transfer and things to do while we're there now!

Bejazzled Thu 09-Feb-17 22:55:47

Great, I'm sure you will love it. If your teen is up for it get tickets for the Verona opera. They are quite cheap if you sit up in the steps with a cushion and a bottle of wine everyone has a great time up there. I persuaded my 16yo ds to go and in the end up he loved the event of it, colour, pageantry, all under the stars.

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