A couple of weks ago I made a short trip to Italy to visit my family. I stayed in a small but lovely village next to Vicenza for four days only, but I was lucky enough to squeeze a couple of charming day trips. One day we decided to escape from the high temperatures and drive up to the Trentino mountains.
Our first stop was Lavarone. Located in a luscious green plateau in the middle of the mountains, this village is a great destination for Winter sports but it’s also a fantastic place to enjoy mild refreshing temperatures in Summer. If you love hiking, this are would be perfect for you.
We stopped for a macchiatone in the wonderful terrace of the Grand Hotel Astoria. The views of the small but delightful Alpine lake were absolutely amazing. All bundled up in our jackets we sipped our coffees and admired the beautiful landscape. The weather was not very nice but I sort of loved it: the moody clouds and the light wind emphasized that pine scent infused mountain feeling.
So after a small stroll through Lavarone’s streets we drove to the lake for an invigorating walk where I made a new friend, who was the only one brave enough to jump into the water.
The lake had two picture perfect beaches that were completly empty that day but I thougt they were perfect for a quite relaxing and different holiday.
The fresh air and the walk around the lake made us hungry so we stopped for an authentic trattoria style lunch at hotel Al Lago. This is were locals come from huge plates of pasta and traditional meals with Austrian and German influences. After a hearty meal that ended with an amazing apple and cinnamon strudel for pudding, we continued with our road trip.
We drove up the mountains, with a small stop at Malga Millegrobe, where it was so cold that we just stepped out of the car, took that one picture and run to the car again.
And we arrived to Luserna. This small, decadent village is quite special. It has a truly pintoresque architecture. Some houses had that typical Alpine style and reminded of Austria whereas other had a quite noticeable Mediterranean influence. But what makes Luserna different from other tiny villages in the world is its language: Cimbrian. This German dialect is (almost) only spoken here! You can find a weekly Cimbrian page in the daily local newspaper and listen to its particular sound on regional private TV channels.
After enjoying a great day on the road, we ended up having a lovely dinner of cold meats, grilled cheese and raspberry pie. I can’t recommend this small but charming road trip enough: we escaped the hoards of tourists that invade Veneto in Summer, we enjoyed breathtaking views and we discovered new unspoiled corners of Italy. So, if you want to plan a different trip to Italy, I suggest that you contemplate this mountainous area. It has a rebel spirit – it was one of the most insurgent points during the war, which footprints are still perceptible among the beautiful landscapes – and a flawless facade. It’s perfect for nature lovers and foodies alike and those little lake beaches are delightful for family holidays. Let the kids play in the shore while you read peacefully in one of those striped hammocks!