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Baveno, Lake Maggiore vrs. a south end base Lake Garda, Lake Iseo.

My developing bases remain the same..Piedmont, Sudtirol and the Lakes but investigating bottom end of Lake Garda as it is more en route to Sudtirol then Baveno. Salo or Bardolino maybe...how does the beauty factor compare, accessibility to ferry, quality of towns to visit. would want to park the car and forget about it. And then there is Iseo, Lake Iseo. I know...the world is my oyster.🙂

Posted by
3037 posts

Lake Iseo has less of interest near it than the others, with one big exception, the hundreds (thousands?) of rock engravings. These were done by various groups from pre-history up ‘til the 16th c., when the Catholic Church forbade them as pagan practices. If you go, it is well to have a guide. We stumbled upon a private tour, whose leader kindly allowed us to join for a nominal fee. I realized as we went along that I wouldn’t have gotten a tenth as much from the experience had we just bumbled along on our own.
Definitely off the beaten track.

Posted by
12125 posts

I’m not clear with your choices. Baveno is on Lake Maggiore, while Bardolino is on Lake Garda.
Baveno is nice for Lake Maggiore, although I prefer Stresa which is a little bit bigger with plenty of restaurants and hotel choices. Also it’s the main ferry dock to the islands.
For lake Garda I’m not too fond of the south lake. The landscape is kind of flat although the towns are nice. Sirmione is the most famous in the south lake, but also the most touristy if you go in high season.
I like the north side of lake Garda. Malcesine, Limone, Torbole, and even the larger Riva, are all nice, with majestic mountains in the backdrop, and close to Alto Adige (Südtirol). Malcesine would be my first choice for 3 nights. I like Limone a lot also, but it’s very small and hard to get accommodations. Malcesine and Limone are an easy boat ride away.

Posted by
137 posts

I know...too many choices and too many questions. Had decided on Baveno if Lake Maggiore was to be our lakes base but, because we are heading up to the Val Gardena, I started looking at Lake Garda as a replacement since it is en route. And, of course, thanks to google there is a lot of positive press on Iseo, Lake Iseo being more authentic, less busy. So I guess I am kind of open to finding that 4 night base that is the most visually appealing, close to ferries with nice town stops, good accommodation. We will need parking of course.
As for Stresa, had trouble finding a property so I temporarily gave up looking. Can look again.

Posted by
1605 posts

hey hey annemarie
so many places to chose from, you may need a dart board/darts or stop looking haha
we went to lake garda few years back for their annual wine festival "festa dell uva" in bardolino, spent the night at hotel nettuno, end of sept/first of oct. it was so much fun: eat, drink, dance/music, food, local crafts, roaming, grape stomp, fireworks over lake on sunday, sat outside cafes/restaurants talking with mostly german, austrian, swiss, people watch, beautiful lake/mountain views. look up what festivals taking place when you are there
i'm sending you a few sites to check out, my own opinions when i did research for the lake.
lakegardatravel.net read up about santuario madonna della corona "church built into sheer mountain cliff" near monte baldo and cable car
rossiwrites.com/lake garda/best 12 towns to visit
europeupclose.com/loving italy's lake garda
duetigarage.com under trike rentals with driver
italyheaven.co.uk search any city and get info about them
look at towns that do have ferry stops/docks, we did drive a little up lake next day, roads were good, 2 lanes, stopped at a couple villages/towns to walk for about half hour since we had to get back to venice with our rental car. don't forget to get your IDP for rental car and all drivers at CAA
hope this gives you some other ideas about things to do people to see and places to go.
aloha

Posted by
137 posts

it does and thank you so much...did you feel rushed only going for one day?

Posted by
12125 posts

Lots of choices in Malcesine. It also depends on your budget but I’m sure you can find most in the $150- $200 a night range. I don’t know what you’d consider walking distance but the entire town of Malcesine is within 15 min walk from the dock. Some properties may be up the hill, but unless you have mobility issues, it won’t be too strenuous no matter what you choose. If you have a car I would select a property that has parking (or parking arrangements with a local garage). You can use a hotel search website such as Booking and select the parking options so that you filter the properties with parking. In the old town center (near the dock) there are some traffic and parking restrictions, so take that into consideration, as street parking in those ancient narrow streets is not available (and some streets are pedestrians only).