It is stunning to see Italy’s “lake districts” (Lake Como, Lake Maggiore and Lake Garda). We love to travel to Italy in the off-season, even during winter. It’s also when the prices are lower and there are fewer people!
However, there are some things you should know about visiting Italy’s lakes during the off-season.
Are you having trouble deciding what plans to make? Here are some tips to help you make a decision. This is just the beginning of a series about Italy’s most visited destinations in the off-season. Stay tuned for Venice and other destinations like Tuscany, Cinque Terre, and more! ).
What is the off-season in Italy’s lake region? From late September to early June. The high season in Lake Garda and Como, Maggiore, and other lakes is generally summer-specific, running from mid-June through mid-September. The off-season will be longer if you are closer to winter. ). One of the best things about visiting Lake Garda in the off-season is the snow-capped mountains!
What to Expect in the Off-Season: The good news is that prices drop and crowds diminish as the weather cools down in Italy’s lakes region. Traffic can get jammed on the roads around the lakes during the summer. This is not a problem in the off-season.
If you are looking to enjoy the beauty of the lakes and see the snowcapped mountains, this is the right time to go.
But what do you think? However, there are some caveats! This region is located in the mountains north. It receives less precipitation than Florence, Rome, and the south. Snow starts early, as the Dolomites near Lake Garda often see their first snowfall in October. There are some sunny, beautiful days in October. However, cold and rainy days are more common than in the summer.
It doesn’t hurt to have a little rain. Keep in mind, however, that the majority of activities in the lake district are outdoors, such as water sports, hiking trails, and ferry rides. If you experience cold or rainy weather, it is possible to not have the same sightseeing options as in a city.
The majority of lake towns are resort towns. Many of the hotels, restaurants, and cafes will be closed after October. Ferries still operate, but they run on a more limited schedule (their “normal schedule” tends to be between the beginning of June and the end of September). Plan accordingly!
Come out of season
Bring rain gear…and a positive attitude! You can also have a list of museums or day trips you would like to take in the area, in case the weather turns bad.
You might consider renting an apartment if you plan to stay in a small village on one of the lakes.
If you are renting a car after November 1, ensure it can handle snowy weather. Also, rent chains, which are legal in the mountains during winter months.