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Bergamo, Venice and then...Lake Garda or Mantova?

Bergamo, Venice and then...Lake Garda or Mantova?

Old Feb 1st, 2009, 09:15 AM
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Bergamo, Venice and then...Lake Garda or Mantova?

I am planning a trip for my husband and me to northern Italy at the end of this summer. We will spend the first five to seven nights in Bergamo with his family, then head to Venice for three or four nights and then spend our final three or four nights in... Can't quite get that part.

My original plan had been Lake Garda refined to a town which features a castle or fort as my husband just loves a good castello. A quick search this morning would narrow those choices to: Riva, Malcesine, Moniga, Padenghe, Sirmione, Lazise, and Torri del Benaco. I envision that we would just explore the immediate area of the town--preferably by foot, this wouldn't be serving as a base of operations to see the greater area.

What concerns me is the thought of crazy traffic impeding our explorations (if we choose to get in the car and go to neighboring towns) or even in the getting there.

Back up plan is Mantova. It's been floating around in my head for years now after I watched something on tv about the Palazzo Te and the city itself is now as alluring.

So for those of you who have been there, tell me more and help me decide.

Thank you!
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Old Feb 1st, 2009, 12:12 PM
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Where do you depart Italy?
If Venice, then spend 3 nites at either Riva del Garda or in the Val Gardena in the Dolomites.
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Old Feb 1st, 2009, 01:43 PM
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Thank you Bob, I'm glad you responded as I've read many of your posts today. No airline tickets yet. It'll be either Venice or Milan depending on price and taking into account travel time to the airport.
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Old Feb 1st, 2009, 01:49 PM
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hi sorriso,

really there's no need to worry about cars by lake garda, and it almost doesn't metter which resort you stay at because you use the boats to get about.

we stayed at Garda itself, and in a week saw most of the other places on the lake. a place midway along the eastern coast of the lake makes access to the rest of it as easy as possible.

regards, ann
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Old Feb 1st, 2009, 02:30 PM
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We spent 3 nights in Malcesine after a visit to Venice and loved it there. It has a nice cobbled "oldtown" area around the castello, and great walking trails on Monte Baldo. You can ride the gondola to the top to find more walking trails and great views.

And as Ann mentioned, if you want to explore other towns, you can take the boat.
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Old Feb 1st, 2009, 05:58 PM
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Like you, Mantova has intrigued me for some time. We first stumbled upon it in 2003 when we were driving to the Parma area from Venice along S10. We reached the area around lunch time and found this incredible city with a huge castle (Palazzo Ducale) with a moat on a lake. What was it? We couldn't stay to find out since we had plans further down the road. We didn't know until we got home and could check it out on line (it wasn't in our guide book). Of course, since then we've seen several mentions of it on various TV travelogues. As fate would have it we are returning for our fourth trip to Italy this June and visiting that area - and this time we're spending the night in Mantova. I've got to see what's inside in person. And Palazzo Te, too, of course.

And should you decide on that town, and you have a car, don't miss Montagnana, also on S10. A very evocative walled village. And the seven chapels of Monselice are pretty special, too.

But if it's more about the castle than the town, the castle in Ferrara is probably as interesting as we've visited. Even a pretty creepy dungeon you can enter! And the legends are in English as well as Italian which helps us language-impaired.

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