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A delightful drive across the Brenner Pass from Austria into Italy delivers an abrupt change of tempo as the Italian DNA takes hold. There is a long downhill run towards Trento with the railway line on the right hand side for much of it and as you get lower down the acres of fruit farms start to dominate. As soon as I can I turn right for the tourist route to and around Lake Garda.

There are more campsites here than you can sort out in your head but I prefer the run on the east side of the lake and I avoid all the obvious tourist traps and keep on going until I am about half way down and come to Torri del Benaco. I routinely stay in what amounts to an olive grove overlooking the lake. Camping Ai Salici suits me just fine as I can walk up the near vertical path to the village’s centre and get one of the finest pizzas around with a commanding view of the lake as I huff and puff my way up to the stop reminding myself that I have been in the van all day and this is very, very good for me. The site is on page 486 of The Caravan Club’s “Caravan Europe 2” directory.

The lake has a micro climate of its own as it is so big and is a wonderful relaxing stop over before heading into mainstream Tuscany.

Christopher Macgowan
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