Every year, the shores of Lake Trasimeno in the centre of Italy and her largest lake, are filled with holiday makers from around Europe and the world. The lake’s reputation for being both exceptionally tranquil and beautiful, combined with an area full of activities to suit all ages and preferences has created a holiday destination which once discovered becomes irresistible to most people.
Creative Commons Photo by Frattaglia
The Cultural Heart
From May through to the end of the summer the region hosts festivals and celebrations and boasts an atmosphere of light hearted frivolity and good old fashioned hospitality. Despite the festivals, the draw card for the lake is the peace and beauty visitors will experience as they enjoy the stunning lake views and indulge in a variety of non motorised water sports including canoeing, wind surfing, fishing and sailing. Lace making and other traditional crafts may be observed in the area and souvenirs bought and taken home as constant reminders of a lovely holiday experience.
Those who prefer dry land will love the cycle hire and over 30 miles of bicycle pathways open the door to exploring the lake perimeter as well as providing easy transport to explore the nearby hills to the east, which help feed the fresh water supply into the lake. Camping and hiking provide idyllic holiday options for those who want to explore the region and appreciate its natural beauty. Horse riding trails offer a unique and interesting transport option for discovering otherwise hidden gems in the region which was declared a national park in 1995.
Creative Commons Photo by Nevicadaunpo
Lake Trasimeno has three natural islands within it, but only one of the islands has people living on it. This little community is a fishing community and the mainland profits from the local fishing industry as is evident by the delicious seafood menus available to both locals and visitors. St Francis of Assisi lived in the region and the local residents in the area have kept stories of his activities alive as part of their folklore and storytelling.
The lake is full of fish species such as trout and carp and many of the restaurants offer a fish cooking service for those who want to eat the rewards of a day of lake fishing. Market days are a popular method of both enjoying and tasting the range of fruits and vegetables that readily grow in the Mediterranean climate.
Creative Commons Photo by Sonia Fantoli
The Historical Heart
Relics of the region’s history are sprinkled around the lake for those who enjoying exploring old castles, towns and towers each with their own story to tell. The lake itself dates back to prehistoric times and was the scene of the Battle of Lake Trasimeno in 200 years BC. Remains of the old Roman Empire, ancient monasteries and medieval castles are to be found on the lake surrounds and on the islands on the lake itself. The most famous of these is Zocco Castle, now privately owned and uninhabited, but like most of the castles in the area, the sandstone walls are crumbling and many are now considered too dangerous for visitors and access is either reduced or impossible.
With such a range of activities available to visitors to Lake Trasimeno, it’s little wonder it has been described as the geographical, historical and cultural heart of Italy.
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Lake Trasimeno villas can be found around the lake and make a fantastic accommodation option. They range in size and facilities so visit the Owner’s Direct website before booking to make sure your villa is perfect for your travelling party.