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Port of Lazise by Dominique France

Southern gate - Lazise

Promenade in Lazise
by Silvio Verrecchia

Welcome to Lazise
From Jesse's Journeys in Italy

Population:  6,213 (2004)
Official website:
Wikipedia: Lazise
Map: MapQuest

This delightful town on the edge of Lake Garda is a lovely place to relax, be it for lunch or for a long weekend. 

Located 25 kilometers northeast of Verona, Lazise lies on the south eastern shore of Lake Garda. Spanning 370 square kilometers, Lake Garda is the largest lake in Italy. It was formed during the last Ice Age and stretches north toward the Dolomite Mountains. But the southern portion, dubbed the “Olive Riviera,” enjoys a mild Mediterranean climate. 

Lazise is rich in both history and architecture. In 983 A.D., Emperor Othlone II granted Lazise autonomy, making it the first free commune on Lake Garda, and one of the first in Italy. Unless you’re arriving by boat, you’ll enter Lazise through one of three gates in the impressive Scaliger city walls, which date back to the 14th century. Once inside these walls, you’re safe from the goofy amusement parks that seem to ring this otherwise splendid lakeside town. (Mind you, visitors with small children may indeed feel obliged to visit Gardaland, Italy’s most popular theme park. Please, mommy, please!

The medieval center of Lazise is largely car-free, making it a pleasure for pedestrians. A magnificent Scaliger castle dominates the center of town. It was built to fend off Austrian invaders, but today it hosts concerts and other cultural events. 

Standing guard along the harbor, the well-preserved Dogana Veneta, (a.k.a. Venetian customs house), once controlled all of Lake Garda’s commerce. This portico'd palace now serves as an art gallery. Underwater lies a fleet of centuries-old Venetian ships, sunk by their own commander to keep them away from the enemy. 

Nearby, the Romanesque San Nicolò Church is dedicated to the patron saint of sailors. Its frescoes, done in the 1300s, were painted by an anonymous artist of the school of Giotto. 

Wednesday is market day, but the small boutiques and shops invite shoppers to browse daily. You can buy anything from camping equipment to designer clothes. Local specialties include cold-pressed extra-virgin olive oil, as well as regionally-produced wines like Amarone della Valpolicella and Bardolino Classico. A multitude of restaurants and bars satiate every hunger and thirst into the wee hours. Many menus feature fresh lake fish such as trout, sardines, pike, carp, and even eel. 

For a closer look at the lake, follow the promenade and its pretty wave-shaped brickwork. The tiny sandy beaches don’t provide much room for sunbathing, but visitors can sprawl out on the lawn on the other side of the promenade. Palm trees provide some shade while flowering shrubs scent the air. Streams of private pleasure boats come and go, and it’s possible to catch a ferry to other lakeside villages. 

In the evening, Venetian-style lamps light the nightly parades of people strolling along the promenade. Young couples, families and seniors — both locals and visitors — mingle and relax in Lazise’s welcoming atmosphere. In fact, every August there’s a festival held to honor guests. Now that’s ospitalità!


from "Ripe for the plucking on Italy’s “Olive Riviera”  By Susan Vogel-Misicka

Region of Veneto

45°31′N 10°44′E


By car: From Verona, take the Autostrada del Brennero/A22 toward Brennero/Trento. Take the exit toward Affi/Lago di Garda Sud. Follow signs for the lake, as well as signs for the well-advertised Gardaland amusement park.

By bus: There’s a good bus connection between Verona and Lazise. Buses depart regularly and the journey takes about 45 minutes.



Mosaic - Lazise

Pilazzo - Lazise

Lazise Tourist Information Office
Via Francesco Fontana, 14
37017 Lazise (VR)
Tel 045 7580114
Fax 045 7581040

Other links: Lagodigarda