bellagio or riva de garda?

Old Aug 18th, 2013, 05:34 AM
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bellagio or riva de garda?

we have 3 nights to spend on the italian lakes. we would really love to stay around bellagio but the prices there are rather high. we found a lovely place to stay in riva del garda which is within our budget. what would you all recommend? is riva del garda as spectacular as bellagio? anyone have a reasonably priced vacation spot to recommend in the vicinity of bellagio?

thanks so much to all!
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Old Aug 18th, 2013, 05:42 AM
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I haven't been to Lake Garda but I loved Bellagio and the surrounding towns. Have you looked at other towns nearby such as Varenna, Mennagio or one of the smaller towns?
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Old Aug 18th, 2013, 06:00 AM
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Big difference in geography. Are you driving? Where before and after? Look at La Limonera apartments in Bellagio.
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Old Aug 18th, 2013, 06:40 AM
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Beware of the hype. What kind of "spectacular" are you looking for? If the answer is views, Bellagio DOES NOT offer the most spectacular views of Lake Como's mid-lake region because the view from Bellagio is only half of the lake. There are plenty of affordable options on the eastern coastline, which IMO is the most spectacular place to be.

Lake Garda is nice, but it's no Lake Como.
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Old Aug 18th, 2013, 11:12 AM
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All 4 Northern Italian Lakes are nice. The ranking depends just on personal preferencies. Americans usually prefer Lake Como, Germans Lake Garda and Swiss people the other 2 lakes.
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Old Aug 18th, 2013, 12:57 PM
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I have been to Lake Garda twice and have thoroughly enjoyed our stay there. The scenery is exquisite. Never having been to the other lakes but I get the impression that Como is a bit more touristy. If you go to Garda and are interested in taking a cooking class or a place to eat I highly recommend Le Gemme Di Artimesisa (www.legemmediartemisia.it). Laura and Andrea are superb hosts and accomplished chefs. They have a unique business plan for their restaurant in that you must make a reservation one (1) day before;by noon the preceding day. If you are the only one(s) to reserve for dinner they cook especially for you or for ever else who made a reservation. For our cooking class, it was just my wife and me and we had a fantastic time, got to request ahead what we wanted to learn and then eat it all at the end of the day (9 AM to 4:30 pm). Their location overlooks Lake Garda which is truly spectacular. While in Garda we stayed at Hotel Gardesena. Another superb spot on the lake. The rooms were clean, decorated tastefully and the staff was very helpful and friendly. We are about to return to Italy on a trip this October and I regret not being able to get up to the north and enjoy this area since we had such a good time. Lastly, whatever you decide, I don't think you'll be disappointed.
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Old Aug 18th, 2013, 01:06 PM
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I have been to Lake Garda twice and have thoroughly enjoyed our stay there. The scenery is exquisite. Never having been to the other lakes but I get the impression that Como is a bit more touristy. If you go to Garda and are interested in taking a cooking class or a place to eat I highly recommend Le Gemme Di Artimesisa (www.legemmediartemisia.it). Laura and Andrea are superb hosts and accomplished chefs. They have a unique business plan for their restaurant in that you must make a reservation one (1) day before;by noon the preceding day. If you are the only one(s) to reserve for dinner they cook especially for you or for ever else who made a reservation. For our cooking class, it was just my wife and me and we had a fantastic time, got to request ahead what we wanted to learn and then eat it all at the end of the day (9 AM to 4:30 pm). Their location overlooks Lake Garda which is truly spectacular. While in Garda we stayed at Hotel Gardesena. Another superb spot on the lake. The rooms were clean, decorated tastefully and the staff was very helpful and friendly. We are about to return to Italy on a trip this October and I regret not being able to get up to the north and enjoy this area since we had such a good time. Lastly, whatever you decide, I don't think you'll be disappointed.
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Old Aug 19th, 2013, 06:40 AM
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<i><font color=#555555>"Americans usually prefer Lake Como, Germans Lake Garda and Swiss people the other 2 lakes."</font></i>

I've never seen this suggestion in print before, and I happen to think it's just one of those silly things you read on the internet.

I've been celebrating my summer birthday on Lake Como for almost ten years now. Mostly, I experience vacationing Italians. Many own second homes around the lake. Beyond that, I run into very few Americans. But the rest of the world is amply represented, especially the British.

<i><font color=#555555>"I have been to Lake Garda twice and have thoroughly enjoyed our stay there. The scenery is exquisite."</font></i>

IMO, the geographical scenery is more exquisite on Lake Como simply because nature made it that way. You can Google photos of each lake, and you will see that Lake Como offers the most visual variety of high drama.

<i><font color=#555555>"Never having been to the other lakes but I get the impression that (Lake) Como is a bit more touristy."</font></i>

Lake Como has more tourists because it's the largest lake. The scenery on Lake Como is also the most dramatic. Lake Como offers more historically-known cities to play around in.

If a tourist is going to visit the Lake Region only one time in life, they usually opt for the most bang per buck.

Even in July, the busiest wedding month, I've never found Lake Como to be obnoxiously crowded. In fact, I find the place utterly peaceful. But I live in NYC, and we tend to have a different take on quiet.
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Old Aug 19th, 2013, 07:04 AM
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The northern part of Lake Garda is pretty, but Lake Como is prettier and more dramatic. Lake Como, especially south of the Bellagio promontory, is narrower and you have more of a Fjord-like feel to it.

The homes are also more stately on Lake Como. It is not wanting for villas. Lake Garda seemed more like visiting someone's lake cabin/lake house whereas Lake Como makes me feel like I'm on a Grand Tour. I saw many camper vans on Lake Garda and while I'm sure they are also on Lake Como I don't recall seeing many (any?).

Where are you flying in and out? With only three days on the Lake, that might be determinative of your final choice...
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