The town of Toscolano Maderno is on the river delta of the Toscolano stream, inside the Lemon and Castle Coast, in a beautiful and sunkissed spot that makes it a very frequent destination in the summer, also thanks to the wonderful glimpses of Lake Garda it has to offer.
Pleasant climate and wonderful views
Toscolano Maderno belongs to the province of Brescia and is 40km from the City of Brescia. It is on the western coast of Lake Garda, on a long promontory in the midst of the Lemon Coast and the Alto Garda Bresciano park.
Near Toscolano Maderno are Mount Pizzocolo and Mount Castle of Gaino, and from their slopes people can view the enchanting landscape of Lake Garda. The typically mediterranean climate allows people to enjoy mite temperatures all year long, and aside from bathing in the lake, visitors can go on an adventure and go hiking or mountain bike riding on the nearby paths and hills.
Another sport that can be practiced here is golf, thanks to the presence of the Bogliaco Golf Resort with 18 holes that is open all year long.
The paper museum and other places of interest
Toscolano and Maderno have been two separate communities for centuries. They’re both roman in origin, and were united into a single town in 1928. The two places keep their centers separated by the Toscolano stream, and their economic activities have maintained their peculiarities.
Toscolano’s historical origins are very visible, as we can see the roman villa that dates back to the 1st century a.D. that belonged to the consulate Marco Nonio Macrino, still decorated with a beautiful mosaic floor inside.
Other places of historical interest are the church of Saint Peter and Paul, that for a long time was the summer headquarters of the Brescia diocese, and the ancient Madonna del Benaco sanctuary.
In the 1300’s the paper industry developed in the area and became the main point of reference in Toscolano in the now so called “valley of the paper mills”.
Paper money was printed here until 1948. Nowadays tourists can visit the ruins of the ancient factories, one of which was recently converted into a museum, and immerse themselves into one of the most interesting itineraries of italian industrial archeology.
The touristic vocation of Maderno and Garda’s lemon farms
The town of Maderno has always had a more touristic vocation, especially after the hotel development after WWII. The church Saint Andrea, the town square, and other palaces and monuments are historical places of interest.
The true show however is made out of the amazing landscapes of the Lemon Coast, known for its excellent wines, olive oil, and lemon juice. From the dock it’s possible to visit the ruins of the ancient Toscolano Lemon farm, one of the main lemon farms from the beginning of the 1900’s.
Lemon farming was introduced by franciscan monks in the 13th century. For centuries the lemons were exported in all of Europe, until this business stopped being profitable in the 20th century. The area is nowadays famous for its olive trees and the olive oil of Garda production, one of the best in Italy.
The beaches of Toscolano Maderno
Toscolano Maderno is known for having a long and wonderful beach called Lido Azzurro (light blue beach), that is comparable to the best beaches of the Tyrrhenian and Adriatic sea.
The Lido Azzurro beach is right next to the Zanardelli Lakefront Boardwalk and it is the most popular and best equipped beach of the area. It is a beach you need to pay for to access, that offers various services and comforts such as sun beds, beach umbrellas, cabins, cafés and a restaurant-pizzeria with a play space for the little ones.
Nearby are also the free and rocky beaches, like the Riva Grande beach, that offers a view of the little dock of Toscolano, the Ulivi beach, that has a more relaxing atmosphere, and the Bau dog beach, relatively close to them.
Events in Toscolano Maderno
Shopping lovers can look for local products like wine, olive oil, and lemons in the weekly market held every thursday. In this town fishermen can taste different local dishes based on lake fish like trout, pike, and carp.
During the Republic of Venice fishermen had to turn in all of their carp for the Doge’s feasts. Nowadays the ancient way to prepare this fish, with vinegar and vegetables to preserve it longer, has made carp the top entrée of Lake Garda.
One of the structures you can spend a weekend in complete relax is the Antica Limonaia bed & breakfast, restored from the guest quarters of franciscan convent.
The town of Toscolano Maderno offers its guests different activities and events like:
- the possibility to paraglide off Mount Pizzocolo,
- the summer pyrotechnic show,
- the XGardaman Cross Triathlon,
- the Cecina Borgo d’Incanto demonstration, an evening of shows and entertainment inside the beautiful Cecina hill scene, a hamlet of Toscolano Maderno’s, that in 2018 also hosted the international Festival for street artists.
Tours and recommended itineraries
We will sail in direction Gardone Riviera and Fasano, and then continue to north along the west side of the lake.