Why plan a holiday at Lake Trasimeno?
Because the lake boasts accommodations of all types and for all budgets: from the classic agriturismo with winery, to family-friendly tourist villages, campsites with caravans to self-catering apartments and historical noble villas. The choice is vast, and it is all of good quality!
When it comes to sports, as we said, the lake region has it all: from horseback riding to biking, nordic walking and cycling, not to mention the water sports: sailing, fishing, kitesurfing, windsurfing and canoeing. And let’s not forget the fine food and wine, and the nearness of the famous art cities of central Italy: Perugia, Assisi, Castiglione del Lago and Siena, just to mention a few!
We have designed our programmes so that you can enjoy this region in the very best of ways, indulging in your favourite sports during the daytime and then enjoying wine tastings and sunset dinners. The area also boasts a fair number of museums and there are plenty of concerts for all musical tastes. Explore and discover the nature and beauty of our ancient and fascinating region!
Lake Trasimeno is located in the northwestern part of Umbria. It’s surface area covers some 128 km² and it has a circumference of almost 45 km, making it the largest lake in central Italy and the 4th largest in all of Italy.
Sitting on the border between Umbria and Tuscany, it’s steeped in history.
It was on its shores in the Tuoro area in the spring of 217 BC, when Claudius was Emperor of Rome, that the bloody Battle of Trasimene took place. The Romans, under the command of Roman Consul Gaius Flaminius, were ambushed and defeated by Hannibal, who led the smaller Carthaginian army. Many Roman soldiers lost their lives that day and a field with descriptive plaques can be found in an area known as Sanguinetto, from the Italian word for blood, sangue. It is well worth a visit.
The hills surrounding the lake make for a breathtaking landscape of extraordinary beauty at any time of year and are dotted with olive groves and vineyards which in turn produce olive oil and wines of excellent quality. The hills also have woods and many a medieval village to visit. The entire area is, truth be told, ideal for nature and open-air sports holidays. The trails and paths that crisscross the gently rolling hills are perfect for hiking of all levels and even Nordic Walking. The 62 km signposted path that goes around the lake, on the other hand, was conceived as a cycle path and the many offshoots from it offer a chance to explore other parts of the area as well!
The lake - which is actually quite shallow, often reaching only some 4.5 meters at its deepest point - boasts three islands. The largest is Isola Polvese, followed by Isola Maggiore and then Isola Minore. Isola Polvese is situated in the south-eastern corner of the lake and has a surface area of some 128 square kilometres. In 1995 it was declared a scientific-educational zone and there is much scientific research and educational activity going on there. There is also a lovely path that takes you all over the island. Maggiore Island, further to the north, is the only island with permanent residents, officially 18 of them. This island has a surface area of 24 hectares and a perimeter of 2 km. It is crisscrossed with trails so you can roam about and visit the places once so dear to Saint Francis of Assisi. The smallest of the islands, Minore Island, is privately owned and covered in pine groves and stands of oak trees. Lots of cormorants call this little island their home.
Lake Trasimeno is also an ideal place for bird watchers, as many migrating flocks stop here along their long yearly routes thanks to the institution of the Trasimeno Park and the protected La Valle Oasis, whose cane thickets are home to many species. Along the shoreline that goes from San Feliciano to Sant’Arcangelo one can spot a wide range of water fowl. The wetlands that comprise the oasis boasts a wide range of wildlife, from fish to amphibians, reptiles, mammals and birds. In winter, there is an increase in birds from northern Europe, here to winter in a milder climate. In many cases, these Nordic birds often increase the resident population of their own species. Among the medium to large sized birds most represented are the coot (Fulica atra), various ducks – in particular the wigeon (Anas penelope), pochard (Aythya ferina), teal (Anas crecca), shoveller (Anas clypeata) and mallard (Anas platyrhynchos) - cormorant (Phalacrocorax carbo) and the great crested grebe (Podiceps cristatus). Large flocks of coots, which form characteristic black ‘islands’ on the water visible from a great distance and made up of thousands of individuals, feed on the vast prairies of submerged aquatic plants.
Spring sees the arrival of migratory species from Africa, who come to nest here, and even various species of herons can be spotted!