Yes, you can. That’s the short answer. And sometimes at our vacation rental homes on the lakes, you can jump into the water right from your front yard. But we have to tell you: Swimming is not, most definitely not, why you should think about coming to the Italian Lake District.
If you have in mind On Golden Pond or the Great Lakes or Maine’s Belgrade Lakes or Lake Tahoe or the Finger Lakes or Lake Shore Drive in Chicago, please put these images firmly out of your mind when planning your trip.
Also, put Tuscany out of your mind. The Italian lakes have nothing to do with Tuscany, and the houses and atmosphere are utterly dissimilar.
What, then, have the Italian lakes got to offer?
The Italian lakes are a sophisticated resort where people go to breathe (relatively) clean air, (somewhat) cooler in the summertime than the rest of the country. It’s full of grand hotels, luxuriant semitropical gardens, gorgeous scenery, first-class shopping, and charming towns in incredible positions.
Yes, there are sports of all sorts around, water-based and otherwise. Swimming is the least of them by far. Many towns along the lakes offer sports centers, right on the shore, where both local people and visitors go to swim (in a swimming pool) and play tennis. Boats of all types and sizes can be rented, both sailboats and motorboats, canoes and kayaks. Windsurfing and waterskiing are easy to find as well. On land, there’s great golfing to be had as well as hiking at all levels and mountain climbing, some technically challenging. For the less hardy, there are plenty of lake cruises around, where you just pay your fare, take your chair, and enjoy the spectacular views surrounding you.
What’s our point? Our point is that you be sure you understand what a lake vacation is and is not before you decide to go. In essence, it’s all about atmosphere and being in an upscale resort meant for relaxing, shopping, views, gardens, and the outdoors. It’s not about seeing much art or arty hilltowns, and it’s not about the beach or swimming.