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Simply Lake Garda

4.5 stars(52 reviews)

Relax on the shores of Italy’s largest lake

You are viewing the 2021 itinerary. Select your departure year
10 days Sold out

2021 Tour code: DZL21

About the tour

Picturesque, peaceful, and perfectly placed for our visits to enchanting Verona and Venice, the lakeside town of Desenzano forms the ideal base for a holiday, with a delightful setting on the shores of tranquil Lake Garda - one of Italy's best-loved lakes.


What’s included


Day 1 - London to Turin

We meet at our St Pancras Departure Office, and board the Eurostar to Paris. From here we continue by rail to Turin, where we overnight.

  • Day 1 - Dinner
  • Day 2 - Breakfast, Dinner
Day 2 - Lake Garda

We continue by rail on Day 2 to Lake Garda, arriving in the bustling town of Desenzano, located on the wide, sea-like southern shores of the lake. We spend the next seven nights here at the Hotel Desenzano, a charming family-run hotel within walking distance to the lake.

Day 3 - Sirmione

This morning, we cruise across the lake to Sirmione, which occupies a peculiar position on a thin peninsula jutting into the lake. Surrounded on three sides by water, Sirmione is one of Lake Garda's most delightful towns. The narrow winding lanes and pretty piazzas are mostly pedestrianised, which makes strolling through the town a pleasure. There is free time here, perhaps to explore the imposing Rocca Scaligera - a 13th century castle surrounded by a water-filled moat that dominates the Old Quarter of town and offers beautiful views over the lake from its ramparts

  • Day 3 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 4 - Breakfast
Day 4 - Desenzano

Spend a free day in Desenzano on Day 4. The town has been a popular tourist destination since around the 1st century, when wealthy families from Verona began to visit the lake. The centre is filled with pretty squares lined with pavement cafés and restaurants, offering the perfect opportunity to relax with a glass of wine and savour some delicious local cuisine.

Day 5 - Exploring Venice

Travel by rail to the glorious 'Floating City' of Venice, which sits on a shimmering lagoon and is famed for its gondola-filled waterways, twisting lanes and undeniable romantic atmosphere. A boat transports us to St Mark's Square, one of the most beautiful city squares in the world, overlooked by St Mark's Basilica. We're greeted by a local guide who introduces us to the city on a walking tour, leading us around the quaint streets and small squares. The afternoon is free to explore. You could view the Bridge of Sighs, cross the famous Rialto Bridge, or visit the domed 'Santa Maria della Salute' Church. Or, maybe indulge in a quintessentially Venetian activity with a gondola ride along the famous waterways.


  • Day 5 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 6 - Breakfast
Day 6 - Desenzano

On Day 6, spend another day exploring the narrow lanes and picturesque waterfront in Desenzano. You could make your way to the Old Town and explore the pavement cafés, bars, and shops that line the historic streets.

Day 7 - Isola del Garda

Cruise across the waters of Lake Garda to the wooded Isola del Garda, the biggest island on the lake, dominated by the impressive Villa Borghese-Cavazza. A superb example of neoGothic architecture, the villa was designed by the architect Luigi Rovelli at the beginning of the 20th century, and still proves just as splendid to modern visitors. The island is still home to the Cavazza family, and often guided tours are run by the Countesses themselves. Explore the exquisite villa and extensive gardens with a guided tour, seeing exotic plants jostling for position amongst verdant foliage and beautifully manicured terraces which run down to the water. We end our visit with an aperitif of local wine in the stunning surrounds of the island.

  • Breakfast, Dinner
Day 8 - Verona

Travel by rail to beautiful Verona - a romantic city which was the setting for Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet, and boasts UNESCO World Heritage status. Our guided tour introduces us to the city's rich history, as we wander amongst Roman ruins and medieval buildings, seeing Juliet's balcony and the Roman Arena. There is free time following our tour to explore at your own pace. You could discover the remarkable Gothic architecture of the Scaligeri tombs, a series of Gothic monasteries where the remains of the Scaligeri family, former rulers of Verona, are interred. Alternatively, you could spend some time perusing the designer shops on the fashionable Via Mazzini.

  • Day 8 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 9 - Breakfast, Dinner
  • Day 10 - Breakfast
Day 9 - Turin

After breakfast on Day 9, travel by rail to Turin, where we spend the night.

Day 10 - Turin to London

On Day 10 continue by rail to Paris for the Eurostar back to London St Pancras.

Additional information

Departure times

Provisional departure and return times, where available, can be found together with our dates and prices by clicking on the 'Prices & Availability' button. We write to all booked customers approximately 10 weeks prior to the start of their tour to advise the exact departure and return time for their particular group.

Mobility information

Please note: This may be suitable for reduced mobility passengers, please call for further information.


Hotel Desenzano, Desenzano

Hotel Desenzano, Desenzano

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4.5 stars4.5 / 5 · 52 reviews

  1. 5 stars
  2. 4 stars
  3. 3 stars
  4. 2 stars
  5. 1 star

Mr P Collett

4 stars

Submitted 21 Oct 2019

Logistics, organisation excellent little disappointed in location of hotel and did not agree with its 4 star categorisation

Collected by Great Rail Journeys

Mr B Cross

5 stars

Submitted 30 Sep 2019

An excellent holiday with a good group and an excellent tour guide in a lovely part of Italy

Collected by Great Rail Journeys

Mrs M Day

4 stars

Submitted 23 Sep 2019

Well organised courier was informative and always available.Hotel was comfortable and well maintained.Trips were varied and and well run to interesting places.

Collected by Great Rail Journeys

Mrs L Aljian

5 stars

Submitted 21 Aug 2019

Everything was well planned and Justine, our Tour guide was very knowledgeable and caring

Collected by Great Rail Journeys

Mr A Williams

5 stars

Submitted 19 Aug 2019

Excellent trip really enjoyed

Collected by Great Rail Journeys

Mrs C Williams

5 stars

Submitted 15 Jul 2019

Wonderful. The right amount of free time & trips. Well organised.

Collected by Great Rail Journeys

Show 6 more reviews
Simply Lake Garda

Relax on the shores of Italy’s largest lake


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