July, 11 2019 ( Updated July, 12 2019)
With its romantic charms, noble villas and worldly connections, the Italian Lakes are synonymous with the finer things in life. A tempting programme of events is held each year to celebrate and promote this unique, rich heritage. Enjoy the magnificence of the Italian lakes this summer or next, with these marvellous shows and festivals:
Bellagio Festival, Lake Como
14th June – 30th August 2019
With Bellagio’s own resident orchestra combining with world-renowned troupes, chamber musicians and talented soloists, the Bellagio Festival always brings a cultural treat to the shores of Lake Como. The annual event showcases this world-wide and regional talent through literary, artistic and musical performances. With divine outdoor locations including the Grand Hotel Villa Serbelloni, this year’s musical programme offers an especially scenic way to hear your favourite music, whilst on holiday.
Directly across the lake, the famous Villa Carlotta also hosts a fantastic music programme, so now is the perfect time to enjoy an unforgettable performance with that special someone!
The Stresa Jazz Festival, Lake Maggiore
14th – 27th July & 23rd August – 9th September 2019
With live Jazz and classical musical concerts in full swing across some of Lake Maggiore’s most prestigious locations, this annual festival attracts top musicians and music fans from around the world.
From the UNESCO world heritage site of Santa Caterina del Sasso to the opulent extravagance of the Isola Bella palazzo, the unique venue locations will captivate the senses. With the added allure and finery that goes with it, the atmospheric evening recitals in particular, provide the perfect way to experience the true magic and essence of Lake Maggiore. The Stresa Jazz Festival is fully packed too with a cultural programme of contemporary dance, cinema screenings, literary events and theatrical performances to enjoy, so there really is something for everyone!
Vintage Car shows
Concorso d’Eleganza, Lake Como
Late May 2020 (dates to be confirmed)
Put some 'vroom' into your lake stay, with a trip to one of the world’s most intimate and impressive car shows...
The annual ‘Concorso d’Eleganza’ has been hosted within the decadent lakeside grounds of the Villa D’ Este hotel since 1929. Prestigious car manufacturers from around the globe proudly showcase their daring new models and most prized vintage models. An event like no other, the scenic Lake Como back drop, dazzling VIP list and jaw-dropping collection of world-class motorcars will rev up any car enthusiasts' day!
The best Italian Lake festivals
Notte di Fiaba, Lake Garda
23rd – 26th August 2019
Travelling with the kids? Each summer the shores of Riva del Garda come alive with fairy tale magic. This year, the theme of the family-friendly festival will be the underwater world of the Little Mermaid. With 100+ events and performances to soak up, parents and kids can fully immerse themselves in some exclusive-feeling family time. The finale is a fantastic 40-minute long firework display, which promises to enchant and amaze, young and old alike.
Bardolino Wine Festival, Lake Garda
4th – 8th October 2019
Each year in early autumn, the streets of Bardolino begin to buzz. For 4 days, the town serves up engaging shows, live music, craft stalls and plenty of free-flowing wine! In fact, the annual festival celebrates the Bardolino grape harvest, so you can be sure there's a healthy abundance of local wine and regional cuisine to savour and buy. The authentic wine festival culminates in a colourful firework display over the town.
Cross, Lake Maggiore
Late May-early June 2020 (dates to be confirmed)
Each year, a fun and varied performing arts festival comes to the Lake Maggiore towns of Verbania and Cannobio. Visitors will be wowed by live street and circus performers, alongside interactive art installations, photography exhibitions, cinema screenings, live DJ sets and contemporary dancers. A welcome blend of cool summer vibes is guaranteed.
Italia in Rosa, Lake Garda
June 2020 (dates to be confirmed)
Hosted within the medieval charms of Castello di Moniga del Garda, this festival is one for the wine buffs! With industry talks and a collection of over 100 Italian and world-wide rosé wines to sample, including Lake Garda’s own dry rosé Chiaretto, this major event invites you to sample the finest wines, with or without a sommelier! Accompanied by tours and wine tasting experiences in the surrounding wineries of the Valtenesi region, the open day weekend is tipped to be as cheerful as the very wine it is dedicated to.
Sagra di San Giovanni, Lake Como
June 2020 (dates to be confirmed)
This is easily one of Lake Como’s most popular festivals. Celebrating the history of Lake Como’s only island, the annual event also commemorates the tragic fire of 1169, which destroyed Isola Comacina. The weekend-long festival sees atmospheric floating candles light up the shoreline and lake, followed next day by a costume-dressed parade of boats and a splendid regatta of traditional Lucia rowing boats. The authentic lake festival culminates on the first night with a spectacular firework display over Isola Comacina - so do bring your camera!