Last Updated on January 29, 2023 by gregor
In this blog, I share the Best things to do in Brescia, a province of Lombardia in the Northern part of Italy; Brescia’s most beautiful spots together with a bunch of useful tips for travelers.
Brescia is an incredible province in Italy often overshadowed by other provinces in Italy. Various spots in Brescia need more promotion. I decided to create a blog about the Top Things to do in Brescia A guide for travel geeks to get around the province and enjoy the beautiful villages, beaches, and unique architecture. This will be a Blog post dedicated to the Best Things to do in Brescia, Italy.
This Travel Guide to the best Brescia travel spots will walk you through the various local areas but also highlight the most iconic places, museums, and local cultural activities, world-famous Italian gastronomy you cannot miss when you are in Brescia. Enjoy with me some of the most beautiful places to visit in Brescia
Making it the ideal place to see and do, Brescia offers everything from the green mountains to the gorgeous Lakes. The province is packed with delights and can leave you confused about what to see first. To help you out we have listed down the ultimate top things to do in Brescia.
Best Things to do in Brescia, Italy
Do you want to travel to a wonderful part of Italy? Then start right here with Brescia! Follow my recommendations for top sights and activities of magnificent Brescia, a province of Lombardia in the Northern part of Italy.
Here you will find everything you need to have an authentic travel experience: all useful information about museums and local cultural activities, the world-famous Italian gastronomy, and the most beautiful places to see. Brescia City and the entire province offer endless possibilities for vacation.
Discover the Province of Brescia with me:
Brescia City – Authentic provincial capital of Lombardia with charm
The Lombard provincial capital, Brescia, is around 30 kilometers southwest of the well-known Lake Garda, and – not only – it is worth a visit for its numerous art treasures. Brescia is surrounded by a wreath of hills with small villages and magnificent villas.
Walking Tour through the historical center of Brescia City
The city’s cultural monuments provide almost complete evidence of the past 2000 years. On a tour of Brescia’s old town, you will encounter ancient buildings, early Christian sacred art, Romanesque and Gothic churches as well as impressive squares and palaces.
Book your Guided Walking Tour here:
Visit the Brescia’s City Squares
Each era is represented in Brescia by a town square. The Roman Brescia revolves around the Piazza del Foro. In the Middle Ages, the Cathedral Square and Broletto formed the center city and during Venetian rule, the Piazza Della Loggia and Piazza del Mercato were created. Many of the city’s shops can be found in the streets around Piazza Della Loggia, where there are also numerous bars and cafes. Every Saturday there is a weekly market in the center.
Visit the Beautiful cathedrals of Brescia
Brescia is a city that has two large cathedrals. While the New Cathedral, built in the Baroque style between the 17th and 19th centuries, dominates Piazza Paolo VI, La Rotonda, the old cathedral, appeals with its unique structure and beauty.
Visit the Museo di Santa Giulia (www.bresciamusei.com )
The extensive museum complex is located in a former nunnery of the Benedictine order from 753 and has been a Unesco World Heritage Site since 2011. The museum offers a journey back in time through the history of Brescia’s settlement, from the Celts to the Romans to the present day. In Roman times there were important villas on the site; today, among other things, the Lombard basilica with the crypt of St. Salvatore is still on the site.
Visit at Pinacoteca (Art Gallery) Tosio Martinengo (www.bresciamusei.com)
The art gallery in Palazzo Tosio Martinengo shows works by various artists from the 13th to 18th centuries.
Visit the Famous Mille Miglia Classic Car Race Museum
In March 1927, the famous Mille Miglia classic car race came to life when four rich Italians decided to organize a one-time endurance tour starting in Brescia all the way to Rome and back for a total of 1600 km. The idea was so grand that it was decided that the race would be taking place every year, each time selecting different routes, thus making the journey unpredictable and adventurous. After WWII, the race was resumed to this day. The Mille Miglia Classic Car Museum is a must when visiting Brescia City.
The Museum is dedicated to the ‘Red Arrow’ race and was brought to life by the Mille Miglia Museum Association. It was established in December 1996 by a group of Brescian businessmen known as the “Friends of the Mille Miglia”.
More Information and Museum Opening Hours:
Visit the wonderful Lake Iseo – A romantic boat tour
Lake Iseo Boat tour (www.barcaiolimonteisola.it ) to the three islands with a stop in Monte Isola for a visit.
Royal Navy captain Vincenzo Richeri built a neo-gothic castle as his private house in 1910 and a marina with two small lighthouses.
Santo Paolo Island with a monastery
Monte Isola Island
Monte Isola is the largest inland lake island in southern Europe (just under 5 km²)
The 2000 inhabitants of the island are considered to be particularly fortunate because, according to the unanimous opinion of the northern Italians, they live in the most beautiful spot in Italy.
The small fishing village of Peschiera Maraglio on the island of Monte Isola in Lake Iseo. (Foto)
The Araba Fenice hotel.
Pilzone : Hotel Araba Fenice (www.arabafenicehotel.it )
Explore the wonderful Lake Garda
Desenzano del Garda
Desenzano, is the lively metropolis on the southern shore of the lake.
With more than 20,000 inhabitants, Desenzano is the largest city on the lake and far less dominated by tourism than the neighboring towns. Around the harbor and in the old town, beautifully restored trading houses testify to Desenzano’s long tradition as one of the most important trading centers in Northern Italy.
The city’s prosperity, which continues to this day, is evident in the many fine shops, the large marina, and the elegant promenade along the lake. In addition, Desenzano is the seat of a bishopric, the location of higher schools, and an attractive shopping area. It offers as well a colorful nightlife with its many bars and discos.
Villa Rosa Hotel – Elegant 4-star hotel with a panoramic view of Lake Garda
The renovated hotel shines in modern elegance, which extends through the hotel lobby to the 62 rooms, junior suites, and suites. With a mixture of neoclassical and modern styles, it pampers its guests across the board. A small beach is within walking distance, as is the old town of Desenzano.
Dinner at the hotel’s restaurant
The Rose & Sapori restaurant offers the opportunity to be hosted by internationally renowned chefs. Their repertoire includes meat, fish, and vegetable dishes from local tradition as well as with international flair. Vegetarian or gluten-free cooking is available on request (AIC certification for gluten-free cuisine). The restaurant offers an exquisite ambiance for important business lunches or private candlelight dinners. The food is incredible and we wished we had spent one more night at the hotel just to savor more of this fantastic cuisine.
Lake Garda Boat tour (https://www.sirmioneboats.it/en/ )
from Desenzano to Gardone
The Garda Island, Garda Lake
A boat trip to Garda Island is magical, like a visit to a world long gone. A small, rocky island that you can visit only after agreement with the aristocratic family still living there. A villa in neo-Gothic style rises above a lush green park with an Italian and an English garden and areas that have been deliberately left wild. During the trip across the lake, you can marvel at the magnificent villa, which with its stylistic elements is reminiscent of the Doge’s Palace in Venice, and the large park, which is comparable to a botanical garden due to its rich biodiversity.
Visit to Vittoriale degli Italiani (www.vittoriale.it)
Not only does the green oasis with the Mediterranean vegetation in the wonderful location above Gardone on Lake Garda make the complex worth seeing, but rather the buildings, and the museum, thanks to the original furnishings and the collections of valuable objects, represent an entire epoch of Italian history.
The style of the eccentric owner can already be seen in the entrance portal
What impressed me most was the ship that was built on the mountain high above Gardone. The poet enthusiast d`Annunzio had this ship cast in concrete based on the model of the cruiser Puglia and equipped it with real ship accessories.
The amphitheater based on a Roman model & Museum of Gabriele D`Annunzio
Enjoy Franciacorta and the famous “La Montina winery”
La Montina offers first-class sparkling wines in the most varied of types: Extra Brut, Brut, Saten, Rosé, Demi-Sec or Pas Dosé.
Over the past 30 years, an 8000 m2, completely underground winery cellar has been gradually built in Monticelli Brusati, which is seamlessly integrated into the historical architecture of the original cubature.
With over 400,000 bottles produced annually, La Montina is one of the largest and most important sparkling wine cellars in the area.
La Montina winery is not just a “classic” sparkling wine producer, it also offers a lot of entertainment. Private events, weddings, and company celebrations can be held in Villa Baiana since the 17th century. La Montina is one of the largest and most important sparkling wine cellars in the area. Completely family-owned and run as a family business. Below is a picture of the actual owner Michele, who gave us a great tour of the winery, which ended with a delicious wine tasting and lots of laughter.
More information: https://lamontina.com/en/
Embrace the famous Italian cuisine
Italian food is so popular because it is mainly based on fresh produce and natural ingredients. During our stay we had the opportunity to have lunch at these three restaurants:
Lunch at the Hostaria Uva Rara (https://hostariauvarara.it/de/)
Hostaria Uva Rara offers its guests an à la carte menu with meat and fish specialties. Quality ingredients and original recipes always offer a new taste experience. We had a blast eating the delicious meals and we sure will dine there again when we visit the region next time.
Lunch at Ristorante Nineteen (https://www.nineteen19.it/)
The restaurant is famous for the B.BOX Lunch. TheB.BOX Lunch is the ideal solution for your business lunches between meetings, for a lunch break in the office, or as a break for business meetings. The food is cautiously combined but you can also choose your own set. It was excellent and the decor was amazing.
Lunch at Osteria agli Angeli (https://agliangeli.biz/)
In the heart of the garden city, on the most romantic square in the city, between the botanical garden and the Vittoriale degli Italiani, you will find the historic restaurant Gardone Riviera. We have been swayed by the relaxed atmosphere of perfect food harmony between exotic and Italian styles. Still dream of those shrimps.
Note: this press trip was organized and sponsored by Bresciatourism. Thank you that everything was so perfectly arranged and worked out well. Of course, as always, I express my own opinion in my travel reports, whether it be praise or constructive criticism.
Frequent-Asked Questions about Brescia
Is Brescia a beautiful city?
Yes, with only 30 km from the southern end of Lake Garda, Brescia is one of the most beautiful cultural cities in Lombardy. Brescia has a beautiful old town with a large pedestrian area that encompasses several millennia of history.
Is Brescia worth visiting?
Yes, Brescia is definitely worth a visit. The historic old town with many buildings and cultural monuments as well as the proximity to Lake Garda, Lake Iseo, and the Franciacorta wine region makes the city the perfect destination for a short trip.
What is Brescia known for?
Brescia is the only Italian city with two cathedrals in one square. Built-in two different eras, they stand one next to the other and differ at first glance. The Old Cathedral, known as the Rotonda, dates from the 11th century.
What is the most famous place in Brescia?
It is the Piazza della Loggia
The Piazza della Loggia is Brescia’s drawing room and the most beautiful square in the heart of Brescia. In Piazza della Loggia there is something going on in almost any weather. There are restaurants and bars around the piazza. Even in winter you can sit outside on the sheltered piazza and enjoy the sun with an aperitivo. Around the Renaissance-style square are 16th-century Venetian-style buildings.
To the south of the piazza is the Monte di Pietà Palace, dating from the 15th and 16th centuries, built with stones excavated from Roman buildings.
However, the attraction in Piazza della Loggia is the clock tower with the astronomical clock.
How do I travel to Brescia?
Brescia has a very small airport 20km from the city center in Montichiari. It serves only a few destinations: Girona/Barcelona, London Stansted (both Ryanair flights), Olbia (Sardinia), Rome, Naples, and Crotone (all air-bee flights).
However, you can reach Brescia from Milan Orio al Serio Airport which is in the province of Bergamo (50km away) and hosts several low-cost airlines such as Ryanair, AirItaly, Transavia, and MyAir.
Brescia is also reachable from Verona Villafranca Airport (50km away), Milan Linate (100km away), and Milan Malpensa Airport (150km away).
You can reach Brescia by any train from the expensive Eurostars to the cheap and slow Regionale commuter trains. It is about an hour from Milan (costing €6 on the Regionale), and other cities including Bergamo, Verona, and Venice are within an hour or two.
MAP of Brescia, Italy
Further Links for Travelers about Brescia
Facebook: Visit Brescia – Bresciatourism