Desenzano del Garda

Desenzano del Garda
Città di Desenzano del Garda

Desenzano Harbour
Desenzano del Garda

Location of Desenzano del Garda in Italy

Coordinates: 45°28′N 10°32′E / 45.467°N 10.533°E / 45.467; 10.533Coordinates: 45°28′N 10°32′E / 45.467°N 10.533°E / 45.467; 10.533
Country Italy
Region Lombardy
Province / Metropolitan city Brescia (BS)
Frazioni Rivoltella, Vaccarolo, San Martino della Battaglia
  Mayor Rosa Leso (PD)
  Total 60.10 km2 (23.20 sq mi)
Elevation 96 m (315 ft)
Population (2011)[1]
  Total 27,788
  Density 460/km2 (1,200/sq mi)
Demonym(s) Desenzanesi
Time zone CET (UTC+1)
  Summer (DST) CEST (UTC+2)
Postal code 25015
Dialing code 030
Website Official website

Desenzano del Garda is a town and comune in the province of Brescia, in Lombardy, Italy, on the southwestern shore of Lake Garda. It borders the communes of Castiglione delle Stiviere, Lonato, Padenghe sul Garda and Sirmione.


Sometime in the first century, the area around lake Garda, including what is now Desenzano del Garda, became a favourite vacation spot for the Veronese élite, Verona being one of the largest Roman cities in northeastern Italy. On the twenty-fourth of June, 1859, four divisions of Sardinian infantry fought a gruesome battle with elements of the Austrian Eighth corps, under Feldzeugmeister Ludwig von Benedek, in an engagement encompassing Madonna della Scoperta, Pozzolengo, and San Martino (as Desenzano del Garda was known). This action was part of the greater battle centered in Solferino, during the Second Italian War of Independence, and was a vital step in achieving Italian unification - unification that was gained only eleven years later.[2] During the Third Italian War of Independence, Desenzano was bombarded by the Austrian navy.

Main sights


The city is a popular holiday destination in Southern Europe. It attracts myriad tourists from the immediate area owing to its beautiful view of the Alps from the southern shore of Lake Garda, its three large beaches (Desenzanino Beach, Spiagga d'Oro, and Porto Rivoltella Beach), and its 27 major hotels. Desenzano is the heart of nightlife on the southern shore of Lake Garda, with several discos and pubs. In the summer, its main squares, Piazza Malvezzi and Piazza Matteotti, are crowded all night with young and partying people.

At the heart of the city is a series of interconnected piazze that house numerous open-air cafés, various shops, gelaterie (ice-cream parlours), and bars.


The city has a main port near the Piazza Giacomo Matteotti, from where several ferries operate. On the south-western outskirts of the city is a large railway station, the Desenzano del Garda-Sirmione railway station (Stazione Ferroviaria), which connects the city to the European railway system. Desenzano also has its own exit from the A4 motorway, the main road between Milan and Venice.

World heritage site

It is home to one or more prehistoric pile-dwelling (or stilt house) settlements, which are part of the Prehistoric Pile dwellings around the Alps UNESCO World Heritage Site.[3]

Municipal government

Desenzano is headed by a mayor (sindaco) assisted by a legislative body, the consiglio comunale, and an executive body, the giunta comunale. Since 1994 the mayor and members of the consiglio comunale are directly elected together by resident citizens, while from 1946 to 1994 the mayor was chosen by the legislative body. The giunta comunale is chaired by the mayor, who appoints others members, called assessori. The offices of the comune are housed in a building usually called the municipio or palazzo comunale.

Since 1994 the mayor of Desenzano is directly elected by citizens, originally every four, then every five years. The current mayor is Rosa Leso (PD), elected on 21 May 2012. Leso is the first female to held the office.

This is a timeline of the direct-elected mayors of Desenzano since 1994:

     Left-wing;      Right-wing


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