There is no better way to enjoy the amazing landscapes offered by the two lakes of the Tuscia area, in Northern Lazio, than paddling in them. A canoe or a kayak will allow you to explore them from a different perspective and appreciate that feeling of freedom that only a full immersion in nature can give you.
The Tuscia area is off the beaten path of mass tourism therefore is a destination where you can still enjoy the pleasure of an authentic exploration. In this sense, a kayak is the ideal way to discover the beauty of Lake Bolsena and Lake Vico, paddling between the blue of the water and the blue of the sky. Both lakes have a volcanic origin – hence their round shape – and they both are a beautiful destination, although they present different characteristics.
Lake Vico and its Natural Reserve
Lake Vico is preferable if, whilst canoeing in it, you wish to get in touch with nature: the lake in fact is included in the Natural Reserve of Lake Vico, created in 1982 by the government of the Lazio region in order to preserve the beauty of this area. The Natural Reserve currently spans an area of 4.000 hectares with an altitude that ranges from 505 to 963 metres above sea level. Of this vast area, the lake – with a perimeter of 18 Km – occupies more than 1.200 hectares.
From a faunistic standpoint, the main attraction is the variety of aquatic birds that you can spot here: the symbol of Lake Vico is the crested grebe because of its massive presence but there are also coots, mallards and white herons, just to name a few. It is not unusual to be accompanied by some of these birds during a canoe tour of the lake. The landscape is rather impressive here: lots of different shades of green that you can admire if you manage to look away from the fascinating reflection of Mount Venere in the water. On the lake shore, there are several groups of kayak and canoe enthusiasts that organize tours; alternatively, you can rent your boat and the safety equipment from one of the local beach resorts.
Lake Bolsena and its varied coastline
The scenery is slightly different if you head to Lake Bolsena. The fifth largest lake in Italy is surrounded by lovely villages – such as Bolsena (that takes its name from the lake), Marta and Capodimonte – that enliven the landscape and its coast is dotted with peninsulas and promontories such as Mount Bisenzio, Punta San Bernardino, Capodimonte’s peninsula and Punta di Sant’Antonio. There are also two islands called respectively Bisentina and Martana.
The latter is the smallest one and is located opposite the village of Marta: unfortunately, visits are not permitted at the moment as the island is privately. With an area of 42 acres, Bisentina is the largest island and is accessible via a ferry service from Capodimonte. On the island there are groves of evergreen oaks, an Italian garden and various monuments. Its rich and green side to the East and the deep blue of the water to the South will not fail to amaze you as you paddle around the island.
A kayak or a canoe tour of Lake Bolsena will let you experience the routes that our ancestors took when they went fishing in the lake, then a nice stop at a local restaurant will allow you to enjoy the taste of fresh lake fish which is healthy and very tasty!