Malcesine is one of the best spots on Garda Lake to do windsurfing with the Peler, the thermic wind blowing from the night (or dawn) until about mid-morning, and that reaches truly remarkable intensity.
Windsurfing, spot review: Malcesine (Lake Garda)
(Podcast available, for Supporters users, in the central part of the article)
To reach the spot (see map below), you need to drive along the eastern Gardesana road. From North, Malcesine can be reached in a quarter of an hour drive from Torbole (one of the villages at the top of the lake). From South, Malcesine is approximately one hour drive from Peschiera del Garda. There are several parking and exit points to start the session.
You can park at the public pay parking - named Retelino, just north of the Hotel Europe (see map below). The paid parking for cars and campers is accessed by passing the barrier and collecting a special token (which will then be used to pay at the exit). The car park is often crowded, especially on weekends, but it is located right next to the beach from which you exit with your gear. Alternatively, you can leave your car in the outdoor parking area, reserved for touristic buses. At around 9.30, the police usually arrive to make the cars be moved. Therefore, it is good to be at the beach at that time, if your car was left there. In this case, it is not necessary to pay for the parking by collecting the token.
Alternatively, you can park and get into water at the Lido Paina (a little further south). The parking, here, is large, and in the early morning there are certainly no problems finding a place, since this second spot is less crowded (it remains more sheltered from the wind near the shore - see further).
Early in the morning the Retelino parking lot soon gets full (campers are already there by night). At 7,00, it is already almost all complete, at least in summer (July-August), during weekends. At other times, and during working days, the situation is much better.
A third spot is Campagnola, a small village, in the Municipality of Malcesine, located a few kilometers north of the town centre. If you are not a guest of any accommodation facility in the area, park along the road (right side going north), and take your equipment to the beach, crossing the road. Less than 10 places are available here, which get full at 6.30 - 7.00. Parking is with a parking disc for two hours, starting at 9.00.
At Retelino, you can rig your equipment inside the parking area (once dirty, now paved), or in the lawn, or pebbles covered area, by the lake. You can enter into the water from the beach just north of the parking lot (and just south of the small dock, near the spot).
Or, you can enter into the water from the beach south of the parking lot, also used by kiters, and South of the landing point of the ferry that makes people service and that also carries cars (do note that when it comes, it is a big one!). In the middle of the two beaches you have a cliff (in some points, good to enter and exit from the water, launching yourself with your equipment, although a little uncomfortable), and the concrete platform of docking (to avoid).
If you go out at Lido Paina, you can rig at the parking lot, and then transport the equipment to the beach, passing through the parking entrance, or you can rig directly at the beach (usually, sheltered from the wind).
At Campagnola, it is better to rig at the beach, so as not to stay close to the road.
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In short, everyone must try Malcesine at least once in their lifetime. It's really a spot worth of note.
If you have suggestions, or additions to be proposed for this article, post a comment. Your contribution will be welcome!
Aloha. Fabio Muriano
Read also a report, of a recent session at Malcesine.
Click here, to enjoy a slidegallery shot at Malcesine
The video of a session at Malcesine