Riva del Garda is spectacularly positioned at the northernmost tip of Lake Garda, surrounded on three sides by sheer rocky cliffs, and by the serenity of Lake Garda on the other. This is the dramatic end of the lake, and the best places to stay in Riva del Garda don’t have a monopoly on the best views in town, you’ll find fantastic panoramas everywhere. Turn corners in amongst its historic architecture and you’ll suddenly hear your own intake of breath as the lake views open out in front of you… Riva del Garda has a broad variety of accommodation, including a five star palace, a great hotel for active families, and an impressively large resort hotel — one of the few on Lake Garda. And if you don’t find somewhere perfect to stay here, you can head just up the hill to pretty Arco.
Some of our recommendations are in the historic heart of town, around the Piazza III Novembre, and there are certainly a number of architectural charmers around the square, including the Torre Apponale, a 13th century clocktower you’re most welcome to climb. This is the Austrian end of the lake, and the architecture and atmosphere are a little more staid than at the southern end, but there’s still a relaxing buzz of life in the waterfront cafes and bars and the food is wonderfully varied. There are good options for hotels in the hills just behind the town too, where the views are arguably even more spectacular!
Riva del Garda is a larger centre, with public transport links and plenty of useful facilities, so it’s a good choice if you don’t have a car, or want to explore without using one. It’s also much loved by walkers, hikers and climbers. We also think it’s a good choice for anyone who fancies a beachier break, with some watersports thrown in — Riva del Garda has a lovely long beach, and this is a famous spot for windsurfers and sailors. Riva del Garda can also be lively of an evening if you want it to be.
Just don’t forget that this is a seriously busy spot in the peak summer months. So if you want to guarantee a room in one of the best places to stay in Riva del Garda, get organised and book well ahead.
For a Special Occasion
- The LIdo Palace offers five stars worth of wonder between the shores of the lake and the foot of the mountains — this is really one of the planet’s most idyllic settings. Behind the beautiful, Liberty-style facade are 42 sleek, contemporary rooms, an award winning spa and a Michelin recommended restaurant. Expect lots of glass — some of the rooms and suites have all-glass walls — all the mod cons, huge beds and stand alone bathtubs.
- The majority of our recommendations for the best places to stay in Riva del Garda, and on Lake Garda, are much smaller than the Du Lac et du Parc Grand Resort, so if you’re looking for a larger resort-type experience, complete with onsite sports facilities and a full spa, then this might just be for you. It has more than 160 rooms, suites and private bungalows and villas — which provide up to four bedrooms and self-catering facilities. All the accommodation offers plenty of space and light, against simple decor. And the resort occupies around seven hectares along the shore of Lake Garda. The onsite facilities are many, but include three restaurants and a sailing club.
- The Active & Family Gioiosa is a much smaller pick, tucked away behind olive groves in the hills overlooking Riva del Garda. The title gives away the hotel’s mission, they offer packages for active families, so arrange canyoning, hiking, mountain biking and all sorts of watersports. But you can also just use the hotel as a super comfortable, contemporary base, with lush gardens and a great pool. The restaurant is very family friendly too.
Prefer a Self-catering Apartment or villa?
- Sometimes a villa or apartment is the best option if you’re travelling in a larger group, so if you decide that you’d prefer a self catering option, check out our online booking partner, booking.com for some inspiration.
- Riva del Garda is at the northerly tip of Lake Garda, so positioned between several international airports: Verona-Villafranca, Brescia-Montichiari and Milan’s Linate and Malpensa. Verona-Villafranca is closest by car, around an hour away, but it’s three hours by public transport. Brescia-Montichiari is closest by public transport, at just over two hours, but it’s around an hour and a quarter by car. Milan is about two hours’ drive, or four and a half by public transport.
- If you want to hire a car — which we strongly advise if you’re staying on Lake Garda and want to explore as much as possible — we recommend you visit our online partner, Rentalcars.
- Riva del Garda, is very popular in the summer, so if you want to visit at this time of year you’d be advised to book your hotel/s and restaurants early. However it is charming well into autumn and winter too, and spring is also very beautiful. May and June are a good compromise if you’re still hoping for warmth and sunshine, with temperatures reaching about 25°C (unsurprisingly it’s a popular time for walking holidays) and September is similar.
Still not sure where to stay?
- You could expand your search to include all the best places to stay on Lake Garda
- Consider including other local centres in your search Gargnano and Gardone Riviera are along the shore to the west, or you have Malcesine and Torri del Benaco to the east, and the Sirmione peninsula at the very southern tip, all the way across the lake from Riva del Garda
- You could also consider refining your search by the kind of accommodation you’re looking for, be it the best hotels with a view on Lake Garda, the best family hotels on Lake Garda or the best hotels on Lake Garda for foodies
- Alternatively, you could contact one of our friendly gurus for personalised advice.