VENETO, ITALY LAKE GARDA ROAD TRIP PLANNER: VERONA TO TRENTO
During your next trip to Europe treat yourself to one of the best tours of Lake Garda with an exciting exploration of culture and scenery at one of the most beautiful lakes in Italy.
Uncover the majesty of this extraordinary region as you cruise along highways carved out of the rocky shoreline and immerse yourself in charming locales along the way! Navigate an experience that's uniquely accessible with the freedom and versatility of a rental car, but before you depart catch a glimpse of what can be in store for you on your next holiday with our Veneto, Italy Lake Garda road trip planner.
The thrilling expedition begins when you pick up your rental car in Verona before setting out on an Italy road trip you won't soon forget! See the city that's world-famous as the setting of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet while you stroll through enchanting gardens and saunter along historic streets peppered with quaint cafes and art galleries. Travel west along the southern coast of the largest freshwater body in the country and visit Brescia before delving into a spectacular tour of Lake Garda.
VENETO, ITALY LAKE GARDA ROAD TRIP DAY 1: VERONA
THINGS TO DO IN VERONA:
Come to the romantic setting of William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet for an intriguing experience of Italian culture in the peaceful countryside of Veneto. Arrive at Verona Villafranca Airport and take some time to uncover the rich heritage of this classically renowned area with some of the best attractions and things to do in Verona before departing on your trip to Lake Garda.
Brush up on your Medieval history and tour ancient Roman ruins like the Roman amphitheater or the Arena, originally constructed in the first century, where you can still catch an opera performance to this day! Admire the resplendence of the fortified Castelvecchio, home to the city art museum, before heading over to the Verona Cathedral to see its eighth-century sculptures, carvings, paintings, and facades. If you're up for a challenge try climbing the 238 steps to the top of the iconic Lamberti's Tower or take the easy way up in the elevator for breathtaking views from the highest point in the city. There's no shortage of things to see in Verona, but the most extensive collection of fantastically-preserved artwork can be found at the Basilica of St. Zeno where you can discover all sorts of fascinating artifacts dating back thousands of years!
A mere walk around town can yield some of the best attractions and things to do in Verona as you explore the city at your own pace and direction. Stroll the "Golden Mile" for wonderful designer shopping opportunities and be sure to stop at Piazza Bra for a quick lunch or espresso break. Visit the famed setting of the balcony love scene from Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet or create your own Italian romance among the grottos and gardens of Giardino Giusti. Venture over the Ponte Pietra Bridge to the Castel San Pietro, located on a hill overlooking the town, for spectacular views where you can't miss the opportunity to catch the sun setting behind the silhouette of the amorous cityscape. The city of Venice is just an hour's drive away for those who care to visit, but you'll be sure to delight in plenty of sites to see and things to do in Verona, away from the more crowded and bustling tourist center of Venice.
VENETO, ITALY LAKE GARDA ROAD TRIP DAY 2: BRESCIA
THINGS TO DO IN BRESCIA:
Travel east from Verona and you'll arrive at your gateway to the scenic bounties of Lake Garda; a thriving city where you'll find plenty of things to do in Brescia! This industrious commune is famous for its manufacturing enterprises but boasts an impressive roster of some of the most well-preserved examples of ancient Roman architecture. Take a drive around town and tour UNESCO World Heritage sites like the Tempio Capitolino, Basilica of San Salvatore, and Church of Santa Giulia or travel up to the Castle of Brescia for stunning views of the city and surrounding Alpine mountains. Visit the first skyscraper built in Italy at the Piazza Della Vittoria or uncover ancient art and artifacts including hundreds of Van Gogh's early works at Santa Giulia's Cloister. Dozens of public fountains and resplendent examples of Italian architecture are spread around the city and a simple stroll through the streets can be among many great free things to do in Brescia!
Although expanding in scope and popularity, this historic locale is not well-established as a destination for visitors and offers an excellent glimpse into an authentic Italian lifestyle unfettered by tourism. If you happen to visit Brescia in May you'll be afforded the opportunity to attend the beginning of the notorious Mille Miglia road race. Although once a high-speed and dangerous driving competition, the event is much more low-key in the modern-day and, rather than perilously racing, participants exhibit classic and custom cars in a procession through the streets on a route that eventually takes the parade all the way across Italy. If this isn't of interest, get out to the outskirts of town and enjoy fantastic opportunities for hiking or mountain biking in the foothills or continue on your journey up the spectacular east coast of Lake Garda. Visit Sirmione to see the Grotto of Catullus - ancient Roman ruins set on a beautiful peninsula; the only access to the historic ruins is provided by a drawbridge from the 13th century Scaliger Castle.
VENETO, ITALY LAKE GARDA ROAD TRIP DAY 3: LIMONE SUL GARDA
THINGS TO DO IN LIMONE SUL GARDA:
A short drive north from Brescia along the western coast of Lake Garda will reward you with an awe-inspiring journey on some of the most scenic roads in Italy. Stop by lakeside towns to catch a glimpse of local Italian culture while you tour Salo, explore Limone, and visit Riva del Garda. If you enjoy staying active, go mountain biking or hiking along some of the many beautiful trails woven amongst the hills and mountains along the shore of the Italian Lake Garda. Rent a boat or kayak to explore the area by water or try your hand at horseback riding in the Alto Garda Bresciano National Park. In a more daring mood? Windsurfing is a popular water sport among things to do in Lake Garda and lessons are offered in most coastal cities.
Check out the amazing botanical gardens in Toscolano Maderno or take a ferry to Torri del Benaco for a chance to explore the eastern coast of Lake Garda. Lake ferries are a popular means of transport among the many gorgeous coastal Lake Garda destinations; if you have the time while visiting Limone, take a quick ferry ride to Malcesine and ride the cable car to the top of Mount Baldo for fantastic panoramic views of the entire region.
VENETO, ITALY LAKE GARDA ROAD TRIP DAY 4: TRENTO
THINGS TO DO IN TRENTO:
After traveling north from your Lake Garda driving tour you will arrive at the charming city of Trento, an urban oasis surrounded by a panorama of magnificent mountains in the Alpine foothills of Tyrol. This lovely locale is perfectly situated to grant easy access to a myriad of outdoor activities and the bountiful parks and land around the area provide fantastic opportunities for hiking, biking, and exploring nature. Climb Mount Bondone in the summer to see the incredible Viote Alpine Botanical Gardens (Strada Provinciale 85, Trento, IT), ski the Dolomite range at Paganella Ski Resort in the winter, or just drive around the plentiful scenic routes which make their way through resplendent valleys and across stunning ridgelines for a few great things to do in Trento.
You'll have no trouble finding wonderful opportunities for enjoying the outdoors during this part of your trip, but the downtown area of Trento itself is a sight to behold. The city is packed with enchanting architecture and historical buildings like the Trento Cathedral and Church of Santa Maria Maggiore, all of which you can see for free on a simple stroll around town. Tour the Renaissance era structures on the Piazza Duomo and sip espresso at an outdoor café while you admire the fantastically preserved details in frescoes, artwork, and sculptures like the Fountain of Neptune. Take some time to see the gothic style Castle Buonconsiglio and visit the museum inside or marvel at the modernist architecture of the newer buildings and hotels around the city, many of which were designed by famous Italian architects.
The city of Trento is a hotspot for science and technology in Italy and there's no better way to discover the unique contributions made by local residents than with a visit to the Trent Museum of Natural Sciences, located right in the center of town. You'll delight in all the intriguing and exciting things to do in Trento and with the convenience of a rental car at your disposal, you'll enjoy easy access to all of the best attractions inside and outside the city!