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Visit Lake Garda ItalyDESENZANO DEL GARDA
The picturesque small town, placed on the south part o f the lake on the famous
homonymous gulf, has got the widest and best equipped port o f Garda and the
ancient, characteristic small port surrounded by buildings on three sides. De-
*senzano is the seat of the Navigation Company on the whole lake. O n e among
the most important centres, it has had these years, a large commercial, tourist
and residential development.
HISTORY. Desenzano was one of the first places inhabited by man in prehistoric
times after the withdrawal of glaciers; the ruins of the Polada civilisation,
discovered in 1873, on the way to Lonato, witness it.
The prehistoric station discovered during excavations o f peat is still wrapt in
mystery, in spite of the numerous objects, tools and fossil remains come to
light and kept at the Ethnographic Museum in Rome. The Roman period was
particularly flourishing; it was the theatre of a victory on the go. We
have many witnesses on that period such as the remains o f a villa.
It was invaded by the Barbarians and given by Charlemagne to the monks ot
S. Zeno in 879. It was a feud of Count Ugone and in 1426 passed under
the Republic of Venice. After the fall o f Venice it passed under Brescia of
which it followed the destiny. The Venetian period was of great importance;
in that period the weekly market became famous (still now it keeps on
tuesdays); it was an occasion of exchange for all the regions with Venice.
We must remember the school of full speed founded at Desenzano from 1927
to 1937 where Agello and De Bernardi, piloting seaplanes, conquered many
speed records; a monument was dedicated to these pioneers in 1967.
Among the famous personnages of Desenzano we remember Angela Merid
(1470*1540), sanctified in 1807. She devoted to the girls* education, founding
the congregation of the Angeline.
TO SEE. The Roman villa of the Iiird cent. B.C - S. Maria Maddalena
CHARACTERISTIC POINTS. The old port, surrounded on three sides by
buildings among which is the Palazzo comunale and that of the supervisor which
is Venetian, works of Todeschini: the promenade.
EXCURSION. On foot: the Cesare Battisti promenade, to the hamlet of
Rivoltella, to the Gezze locality (the birth place of S. Angela Merici 1470-1540).
By car: to S. Martino della Battaglia (8 kms), where there is the museum and
the ossuary in memory to the famous battle in which the Franco-Piedmontese
defeated the Austrian army in 1859; to the various centres of the picturesque
Valtenes; to Lonato and to Maguzzano where an ancient abby is situated.
VISIT SPAIN:Spanish culture is celebrated in everyday
life, not just on holidays or special occasions.
such as Semana Santa (Easter week), but also
each region - even every village - has its
own unique Fiesta Mayor.
Dozens of different events take place during the
Spanish fiestas: big events such as bulls running
through the streets of Pamplona, or Valencia's Las
Fallas, where huge statues - which take months to
prepare - are set alight. Some events occur only in
certain regions. In Catalonia, for example, Els Castellers
make human towers or 'castles' up to 11 storeys high.
Smellier towns and villages offer their own versions of
traditional favourites like giants, dwarfs, dancing
devils or fire-breathing dragons.
A communal effort
All these spectacular traditions are the work of local
groups, often based in communities within large cities.
Some groups are small, almost family affairs,
but others are huge, with hundreds of members.
Many people return to their home town or village
to help celebrate the fiesta, even if they moved
away years ago.