Lazise: discovering and savoring a little gem on Lake Garda

Three things to see in Lazise: Strolling along the historic center walls or lakeside and enjoying relaxing afternoons at the thermal baths.

Three things to see in Lazise

Lazise is a highly popular destination for tourists from all over the world, making it one of the 15 most visited towns in Italy! A little gem on the Veronese shore of the lake, it offers unique and unforgettable views. In this article, I would like to tell you about the three things to see in Lazise and explain why you should add it to your trip to Lake Garda!

What is Lazise known for? Lazise was the first Free Municipality in what is now the Italian territory. In 983, the Roman Emperor Otto II asked the Lazise community to host his troops within the walls. The families accepted in exchange for extensive privileges, including complete civic autonomy. All the subsequent ruling families over the years have always left these privileges to the community, up to the Kingdom of Italy. For this reason, Lazise is considered the First Free Municipality in Italy.

Download the list of accommodation facilities and hotels in Lazise.

Credits: Duminda Perera

How to get to Lazise and where to park

  • By Car. The A4 motorway runs south of Lake Garda. The most convenient exit is “Peschiera“, approximately 10 km from Lazise. If coming from the north, the preferred exit is “Affi” on the A22 – Brenner Motorway (about 10 km away).
  • By Train. If arriving by train, you can disembark at Peschiera, a station on the Milan-Verona line. From there, you can take the ATV 164 or ATV 483 bus (summer line) to Lazise.
  • By Plane. The nearest airport is Valerio Catullo Airport in Verona. During the summer, bus line ATV 482 will take you directly to Lazise. Throughout the year, there is a shuttle (ATV 199) from the airport to Verona Porta Nuova station. From there, you can find trains or buses to reach Lazise.

For more information on bus schedules around Lake Garda, I invite you to read our dedicated article.

Where to park in Lazise? The closest parking lots to the historic center are Marra Parking and San Martino Parking, both paid. If you are looking for free parking in Lazise, you will need to move a bit further away from the historic center.

  • Via Risorgimento Parking. Small parking lot about a 10-minute walk from the historic center.
  • Via Toscanini. Parking about 15 minutes away from the historic center.
  • Paiari Parking. Parking a bit further from the historic center, approximately a 20-minute walk.

Credits: Michael Martinelli

Lazise Old Town

As soon as you arrive in Lazise, you will be greeted by the characteristic city walls. The town has three entrance gates: Porta del Lion, Porta San Zeno, and Porta Cansignorio. Regardless of which gate you enter through, if you continue straight ahead, you will reach Piazza Vittorio Emanuele, easily recognizable by its checkered pavement.

Right in front of the square, one of the most beautiful corners of the town unfolds: Lazise’s Old Port. The earliest documents confirm that the existence of this small harbor dates back to the 10th century. At the ends of the harbor, there were two towers (no longer present today) from which the walls extended, enclosing the entire castrum.

Today, Lazise’s Old Port is a peaceful harbor hosting small, colorful fishing boats, creating a picturesque postcard image. To enjoy this charming view from an elevated perspective, you can take advantage of the new panoramic terrace Belvedere di Narciso, located above the tourist office.

The interesting facts about this must-visit place on Lake Garda don’t end here. Keep reading to discover the most intriguing points and the three things to see in Lazise!

Tre cose da vedere a Lazise
Dogana Veneta – Credits: Stefania Saba

Two points of interest complete the postcard-like image I was talking about: the ancient Romanesque Church of San Nicolò and the Venetian Customs House. The white church was built in the 12th century and was dedicated to San Nicolò, who, according to legend, calmed a furious storm.

The Venetian Customs House, on the other hand, is a famous building from the Venetian era and served as the border point between Lombardy and the Republic of Venice. It is especially remembered for the fact that in the 16th century, saltpeter, a known component of gunpowder, was produced inside. Currently, it is used as an events center for weddings, ceremonies, conferences, and more.

How much time does it take to visit Lazise? The town is small, and half a day is enough. However, there are also fun, relaxing, and cultural activities that can enrich your vacation; discover them all!

Credits: Andrea Aiello

What to see in Lazise in one day

Lazise is a town rich in history, art, and culture, but if you have to choose, I’ve prepared the TOP ranking of the three things you must see in Lazise. This way, you can be sure not to miss out on the essentials during your visit!

1. Scaligero Castle and Medieval Walls
2. Stroll along Lungolago Marconi
3. Villa dei Cedri Thermal Park

Il Castello Scaligero e le mura medievali
Credits: Daniel Bongiovanni

1. Scaligero Castle and Medieval Walls

The Scaligero Castle of Lazise, with its five towers and keep, welcomes visitors prominently, especially when admired from the floral Rosenheim street or from the lake. It dates back to the 9th century when the inhabitants erected the first defenses to protect themselves from enemy invasions. However, the actual fortress was built in the 14th century by the Scaligeri. Over the centuries, the structure was expanded, destroyed, rebuilt, and restored multiple times.

Unfortunately, you cannot visit Lazise Castle. This symbol of the town of Lazise is currently privately owned by the Bernini family, and for this reason, as well as its inaccessibility, it is not open to the public.

To still offer you a glimpse into the past, if you are exploring Lazise on foot and wondering what to see, a walk along the medieval walls is a must!

Credits: Jonas Gerg

Among the crenellated towers, one, in particular, stands out because it is covered by a sloping roof. This is the ancient clock tower, relocated over the years to the parish church of San Zenone e Martino. It was covered at the time to expand the inhabited area of Lazise and make those small parts habitable. Today, it is used as a private residence.

It’s interesting to note that parts of the city wall have been lost. The first interruption can be observed on the eastern curtain along the Gardesana road. Another missing section was part of the western curtain that, starting from the castle, continued along the lake to the old port. It ended at the vanished Cadenon tower, eliminated in 1939 to make way for the war memorial that now crowns the old port of Lazise.

Tre cose da vedere a Lazise
Credits: Isaak Maffeis

2. Stroll along Lungolago Marconi

The second of the three things to see in Lazise is the characteristic Lungolago Marconi. The central stretch immediately catches the eye with its distinctive wave-patterned pavement and the marble plaque affixed to the wall under the terrace of the Classique restaurant. This effigy recalls the privileges that Emperor Otto II granted to the community at the time, making Lazise the oldest municipality in Italy.

Regarding the distinctive pavement, it wasn’t designed with this pattern merely for aesthetic taste. Once upon a time, the lake’s water reached right into the streets, creating small alleys reminiscent of those in Venice. These and other lanes were once navigable exclusively by boats and even featured palisades to prevent enemies from entering the town.

If the weather is lovely, don’t miss a leisurely stroll along the lakeside. The stretch between the Old Port and the New Port is full of cafes and restaurants where you can dine in Lazise.

Tre cose da vedere a Lazise
Credits: touchingbeyond

You can comfortably sit back to relax and enjoy the local dishes while admiring the lake in all its beauty. The best time for a breathtaking view is towards sunset when the water merges with the orange hues of the sky. If you continue to the right of the New Port.

From the New Port, you can reach the towns of Cisano, Bardolino, and Garda by following this charming tree-lined promenade. It’s a perfect suggestion if you’re looking for things to do in the evening in Lazise.

Credits: Villa dei Cedri

3. Villa dei Cedri Thermal Park

If you’re in the mood for a relaxing day surrounded by nature, you must not miss the beautiful Villa dei Cedri Thermal Park. This 13-hectare natural park, enclosed by a typical cobblestone wall, features two thermal lakes at its center.

The larger lake, surrounded by soothing waterfalls, pampers visitors with thermal water at 33-34°C. If you wish to raise the temperature even further, I recommend immersing yourself in the other two “pools” within this lake, which reach a temperature of 37-39°C. A special feature of this small lake is the luminous cave hidden behind the cascading central waterfall. For those who prefer spending time in “cooler” thermal water, the second and smaller lake is recommended, with a temperature of around 29-30°C, still offering the benefits of a thermal experience.

A perfect choice if you’re looking for things to do and see in Lazise for couples. On our website, you can find discounted tickets for this magnificent thermal park. Click on this link!

Tre cose da vedere a Lazise
Credits: Giulia Bordoni

The thermal water that fills Villa dei Cedri, rich in precious minerals, originates from two natural aquifers, one 200 meters deep and the other 160 meters deep, discovered in 1989. Being alkaline with a very high pH, it has numerous beneficial anti-inflammatory effects, making it excellent for those suffering from arthrorheumatic discomforts and dermatological conditions.

In the ancient stable and guesthouse, a wellness center of over 1000 square meters has been created, offering all the solutions for a complete experience. From the Turkish bath to Finnish saunas, from Himalayan pink salt scrub to biosauna and chromotherapy, the relaxation offerings are truly countless, making this day unforgettable.

If, on the other hand, you are looking for things to do in Lazise with children, there are many amusement parks and natural attractions to visit. Check out our website to discover them all and get discounted tickets.

Tre cose da vedere a Lazise
Credits: Tommy Rau

Events in Lazise

Now that you’ve discovered the top three things to see in Lazise, let’s explore the city’s main events:

  • Lake Garda in Love. The most romantic event on the lake arrives every year during this magnificent event around Valentine’s Day. It has a very rich program; I recommend taking a look if you’re planning your vacation during those days.
  • Third of July and Palo della Cuccagna. This event takes inspiration from an ancient fair, featuring stalls, food and wine stands, and music along the streets of the center and on Lungolago Marconi.
  • Lake Flag. During the summer months, you also have the opportunity to witness the regattas of the Bisse Championship. It’s a competition on boats typical of Lake Garda with Venetian rowing.
  • Guest Festival. In the month of August, you will find this festival with gastronomic stands, live music, fun, and entertainment, concluding with a splendid fireworks display.
  • National Fair “I Giorni del Miele” (The Days of Honey). A magnificent event, perhaps the most important in Lazise, organized in the first days of October. It’s not just a market where delicious artisanal honeys from all over Italy are displayed; it’s a true national fair. During the fair, technical conferences and cultural initiatives take place in the splendid setting of the Venetian Customs House.

What to see near Lazise? Now that the list of things to see in the First Municipality of Italy is complete, if you’re interested, take a look at things to do in nearby Bardolino!


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