Italy is a country filled with colorful contrasts, from the beauty of Venice to the sheer bustle of Rome. In northern Italy, the area around Lake Garda also has plenty to offer.
Foreign travelers have been visiting Italy for decades, drawn by the scenery, culture and history that are so intrinsic to Italian life. While Hemingway took delight in his stays in Venice, many others looked further north – to the Italian lakes.
Lake Garda, a favored destination for Franz Kafka, Thomas Mann and James Joyce, lies at the foot of the Italian Alps. Surrounded by pretty villages and towns, it’s little surprise that the region around the lake draws visitors from all over Europe.
The climate here is comparable to that found in the Mediterranean regions further south, while the lake itself has a coastal feel. Indeed, it is the accessibility to water sports that attracts many.
For those looking for different forms of recreation, the proximity of Lake Garda to the mountains provides ample opportunities for hiking, climbing and other such pursuits.
There are plenty of choices for where to stay too. Each of the towns and villages that are dotted around the lake have a different feel and atmosphere, meaning that you can really get away from it all in a rural setting, or alternatively seek a more lively town, complete with fabulous restaurants and wonderful views.
A visit to Garda is suitable for all ages – this is a place that you simply cannot fail to enjoy.
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To find out more about Lake Garda in Italy, check out Keith Barrett’s other travel articles.
Where to stay in Sirmione del Garda
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Lombardia in Cucina: The Flavours of Lombardy
Milan-style risotto, pizzoccheri Valtellinesi, and pumpkin tortelli to start; casoeula, Milan-style cutlets, frogs stewed in tomato to follow, and to send, a slice of sbrisolona cake or panettone.
Lombardy surprises with the richness of its culinary traditions and natural ingredients, which modernity has barely affected.
"Milano in Cucina" captures this kaleidoscope of flavours, with contributions from some of the most celebrated chefs on the culinary scene, who pay homage to their territory, and whose skill is able to present a modern vision in keeping with the region's progressive spirit.
The Italian Academy of Cuisine
La Cucina: The Regional Cooking of Italy
Fifty years ago, a group of Italian scholars gathered to discuss a problem: how to preserve traditional Italian cooking. They formed the Italian Academy of Cuisine to document classic recipes from every region. The academy’s more than seven thousand associates spread out to villages everywhere, interviewing grandmothers and farmers at their stoves, transcribing their recipes—many of which had never been documented before. This is the culmination of that research, an astounding feat—2,000 recipes that represent the patrimony of Italian country cooking. Each recipe is labeled with its region of origin, and it’s not just the ingredients but also the techniques that change with the geography. Sprinkled throughout are historical recipes that provide fascinating views into the folk culture of the past. There are no fancy flourishes here, and no shortcuts; this is true salt-of-the-earth cooking. The book is an excellent everyday source for easily achievable recipes, with such simple dishes as White Bean and Escarole Soup, Polenta with Tomato Sauce, and Chicken with Lemon and Capers. For ease of use there are four different indexes. La Cucina is an essential reference for every cook’s library.
Milano in Cucina: The Flavours of Milan
The famous Risotto Alla Milanese gets its golden hue from the precious spice saffron. Legend has it that the dish came about when a Milanese painter decided to gild the risotto served at his wedding banquet with a harmless gold-colored dye. In Milan, they traditionally serve Risotto Alla Milanese with ossobuco (braised veal shank).
Traditionally made with raisins and candied citron, or with a creamy cream filling, the light, fluffy brioche-like bread called panettone may be tall or short, covered with chocolate or flavored with various liquors, but it’s always a symbol of the Christmas season.
With its hallmark domed shape, panettone graced Christmas tables in Milan since at least the 15th-century. Common knowledge claims its invention is from Milan. It is the most famous Christmas Lombardia food.
The Pax side of the Moon featuring Cesareo
Lombardia (Dicon tutti che sei mia) Quarantine Version - feat. Cesareo (Quarantine Version)