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Lake Idro

Lake Idro

Nestled in the Giudicarie Valleys between Lake Garda and Lake Iseo, near the Dolomites and bordering the Trentino region, Lake Idro, with its characteristic teardrop shape, is another jewel of the province of Brescia. Its position, in the middle of dense forests and green mountains, the high quality of its waters and the rich fish fauna, mediaeval villages, the churches and military fortresses make it a very popular tourist destination. Furthermore, the mild water temperature makes it suitable for swimming until September.
The numerous villages overlooking its 12 kilometres of coastline are worth a visit. In this article we suggest some of the most evocative places of which we could verify accessibility. At this link you can find a map with the villages and hamlets that we suggest you visit. This itinerary is a proposal: the information on the accessibility of the various places are presented in the relevant information sheets.

Idro is wonderful both for the natural landscape that surrounds it, and for the many works of art that it preserves and that can be admired while walking through the charming alleys of the centre (and its 12 hamlets), on the facades of the houses, where there are numerous votive niches, a sign of devotion, and in the beautiful churches, where we can find works of art left by artists of great artistic and cultural value. At this link you can download a brochure with information on Idro.

Church of San Rocco
In Crone, a hamlet of Idro, as soon as you enter the village, dedicated to the saint invoked to protect from the plague, also depicted in a fine wooden statue placed in the counter-façade, dating back to the late fifteenth century. It was enlarged during the eighteenth century, when the wooden icon of the altar of the Crucifix was made by the Boscaì brothers. The altarpiece of the high altar is instead framed by a fake frescoed marble perspective. The façade is peculiar and shaped on three fronts and the "Deposizione con la Madonna" (entombment with the Virgin Mary), holding the dead Jesus Christ in her arms are noteworthy.
Here you can find information on accessibility.

Church of San Michele Arcangelo
Always in Crone, the Church of San Michele Arcangelo is worth a visit. Set in an originally isolated position between the two main hamlets, its presence has been documented since 1500 and was rebuilt in the mid-eighteenth century. The nave with its wide and peculiar forms is decorated by a cycle of vast and articulated frescoes. There are valuable wood carvings, including the ciborium, made by the Boscaì family and the organ, which was made by other famous carvers. The 16th-century wooden Crucifix is ​​of great interest.
Here you can find information on accessibility.

Church of San Sebastiano
The Church of San Sebastiano is in the hamlet of Lemprato. Built in the fifteenth century, the church is well-known for its splendid position, which overlooks the lake from the churchyard from where you can admire the Brenta dolomites. It has a simple architecture and the interior is unadorned. However, during the last renovation works, some frescoes dating back to 1400 have been found: San Sebastiano and Sant'Uberto in the first span and in the second span there is a representation of the Madonna on the throne, probably dating back to the fifteenth century.
Here you can find information on accessibility.

Parish Church of Santa Maria ad Undas
On the western shore of the lake, in the hamlet of Pieve Vecchia, in front of the Hotel Milano, you can see the Parish Church of Santa Maria ad Undas, one of the oldest churches in the Sabbia Valley. In the church you can admire an architectural stratification with elements ranging from the twelfth to the sixteenth century. The main structure dates back to the fifteenth century and is connected to an older apse. Remarkable is the fifteenth-century masonry altar, discovered under an eighteenth-century altarpiece in the mid-twentieth century. The painting over the altar is a polyptych and, in its central part, depicts the Virgin enthroned with Child and four saints. On the walls of the nave and on the pilasters there are other remains of frescoes of considerable interest and of historical and artistic value. Outside, the Romanesque apse, built entirely of squared and worked stone, can be clearly seen. Next to the church, on the left side, there is a small sacristy and the bell tower. The latter dates back to the same period of construction of the church, since inside it is possible to find a wall structure made up of stones typical of that period.
Here you can find information on accessibility.

Going up the lake along the western shore, driving for 5 km, you reach Anfo. The Church of Santi Pietro e Paolo and la Rocca d’Anfo are worth a visit

Parish church of Santi Pietro e Paolo
The Church of Santi Pietro e Paolo was made in the fifteenth century, has a majestic organ and has undergone renovation and changes over time. Among the many works, in the 16th century the wide apse was added. The interior has a single nave, with a very spacious apse where the main  altar is. On the south wall, you can admire the majestic organ, and on the opposite wall, the chapel with the baptismal font.
Here you can find information on accessibility.

The Rocca
From an historical point of view, the pride of Lake Idro is the Rocca di Anfo, a military fortress built in the fifteenth century on the slopes of Monte Censo by the Republic of Venice and renovated in 1800 during the French occupation on request of Napoleon Bonaparte: with its surface of 50 hectares overlooking the lake, the Rocca d'Anfo is the largest Napoleonic fortress in Italy. The fortress was also used as headquarter by Giuseppe Garibaldi during the battle of Monte Suello in 1866. Testimonies of this battle are also found along the provincial road that from the village of S. Antonio goes to Bagolino, a medieval village of rare beauty, where the Ossuary was erected to collect the remains of the Garibaldini soldiers who fell during the battle.
At the Rocca d'Anfo you can admire the Batteria Venezia and Batteria  Napoleonica, the ancient Venetian staircase with its  600 granite steps, the long tunnels dug into the rock and the Observatory, which is located in the highest part and is a true jewel of the Napoleonic military architecture. Also, from the top of its walls you can enjoy splendid panoramic views over the entire lake Idro.
For a virtual tour of the Rocca, please visit: https://www.roccadanfo.eu/geogra/main.swf
The Rocca is on a hill overlooking the lake, with various stretches consisting of long stairways: due to its natural conformation it is not accessible to people in wheelchairs or with reduced mobility.
At this link can find information on accessibility.

Going back up to the north end of Lake Idro, the last stop we suggest is, the place where in 1866 the battle between the Garibaldian forces and the Austrian forces was fought.

Church of San Giuseppe
The parish church of Ponte Caffaro, dedicated to Saint Joseph, is worth a visit. It was built in the late 1800s when, after the reclamation of the Pian d'Oneda completed in 1863, the increase in population needed the construction of a new church in place of the millenary hermitage of San Giacomo now too small and located outside the village.
The church has a gabled façade, the interior has a single nave with the vault entirely decorated. The high altar in white Carrara marble dates back to 1909.
At this link can find information on accessibility.

The Lago d'Idro navigation service connects the villages on the lake. The boat leaves from Lemprato and stops at Crone, Vantone, Anfo, Vesta, Baitoni and Ponte Caffaro. The tour of the lake takes about two hours, with the possibility of intermediate stops.
The service welcomes passengers with reduced mobility: both the boat and the boarding piers are accessible to people with disabilities; a gangway connects the boat to the pier and a sloping ramp allows wheelchair users to enter the spacious covered hall.
For information on schedules, costs and conditions of service, please contact:
Tourist agency
Tel. +39 0365 83224
E-mail: info@vallesabbia.info
Website: www.vallesabbia.info/product/battello-lago-didro/


"Project carried out under the General program of intervention of the Lombardy Region, funded by the Ministry of Economic Development - 2015 Allocation".