The Garda has always been the preferred definition of important personalities of the Italian political panorama, as well as artists and cultural icons; in fact, there are many villas and gardens bearing witness to this past.
This is the case of the Vittoriale degli Italiani in Gardone Riviera, a little museum city that the poet Gabriele D’Annunzio had built as a symbol of his devotion to the cult of the esthetic and to warriors.
There is also the Villa of the Conti Cavazza, on the Isola della Garda, a residence of rare beauty in neogothic Venetian style.
Visitors must not miss the André Heller Foundation Botanical Garden in Gardone Riviera; in this other dimension, nature and art blend, creating a unique environment. There are many species of plants and flowers from around the world, as well as works by important artists such as Keith Haring, Mimmo Paladino and Roy Lichtenstein.
For fans of art, history and culture, the Garda also offers many permanent collections, exhibits, and archeological sites: not far from Hotel Bogliaco, in the city of San Valentino, is a typical hermitage, reachable only on foot. In the city Valle delle Cartiere, in Toscolano, on the other hand, is the interesting, newly-renovated Paper Museum.
Along the coast, toward the lowest part of the lake, in Gardone Riviera you will find the Museum of the Divine Infant, a precious collection of more than 250 sculptures from four centuries of history depicting the Baby Jesus and Maria as a Child, while in the center of Salò there is the Historic Museum of the Blue Ribbon, dedicated to military valor.
Heading toward the extreme south of the Garda, in Sirmione, you will find a rare example of beauty: the Grotto of Catullus, remains of a Roman era villa, belonging to the family of the Latin poet.