Lake summer holidays

Enjoy a getaway to one of the world’s great lakes

Lakeside holidays

What better than serenity beside the water’s edge?

Sophie Gackowski

Sophie Gackowski
HomeAway travel expert

Lake ComoWhether you want to swim and sunbathe without experiencing the hassle of sand-filled shoes, or have a penchant for sailing, windsurfing or snorkelling in fresh water, lakeside holidays are a fantastic alternative to beach breaks. We have some of the world’s most beautiful and unspoiled lakes here in Europe, and yet British tourists haven’t quite caught on to the fact! Frequented by Germans, Italians and Slovenians in the know, the likes of Lake Constance, Lake Como and Lake Bled are simply stunning during the summer months. But don’t leave it to the rest of Europe; we deserve some of that beauty too! Think mountains, fresh air and pine-scented forests, and you’re that bit closer to lakeside holidays.

When considering a blissful break by the banks of a lake, browse through HomeAway’s selection of private accommodation. While we offer a huge number of European apartments in popular resorts, we also have traditional chalets in the hearts of forests, as well as cottages at the foot of majestic mountains. Whatever you’re looking for, and whoever you’re travelling with, you’ll find the perfect property to suit. So why wait? Read on for our rundown of Europe’s best, and most [picturesque, lakeside destinations.


Top five lakeside holiday destinations


Lake District Lake District

An article on lakeside holidays just wouldn’t be right without mention of the Lake District. Yes, while you can always pop across to Germany, Italy or Hungary, you can have an equally peaceful break in England’s foremost green and pleasant land. Encompassing 14 lakes and seemingly countless villages and hamlets, it’s an area with something to offer everyone. Families can enjoy sailing along Lake Windermere, whilst couples may enjoy travelling the pretty train line to Coniston. Groups, meanwhile, will love tackling the sloping fells - or hills - so characteristic of the region.

View cottages in the Lake District



Lake Como Lake Como

When you look at a map of Lombardy, you’ll see the wonderful Lake Como trickling down its centre. A popular holiday spot for well over a century, this inverted “Y” shaped lake is known for its magnificent mountains, warm weather and fresh air; everything you need for a relaxing lakeside break. There are a huge number of places in which to stay around Lake Como, including Bellagio - one of the most popular resorts - and Menaggio - with its famed ice cream and coffee shops. When not on a boat trip or enjoying a spot of kite surfing, why not venture into the mountains?

View cottages near Lake Como



Lake Balaton Lake Balaton

Known as the ‘Hungarian Sea’, Lake Balaton is Europe’s largest body of fresh water. A haven for water-sports enthusiasts and a welcome relief for hot and bothered tourists, it’s the perfect place for a summer holiday. In the south of Lake Balaton you’ll find long, sandy beaches with safe, shallow waters for swimming, and boulevards lined with souvenir shops, restaurants and nightclubs; in the north, you’ll find a more tranquil atmosphere, with pretty towns filled with old churches, and thermal baths. Whichever side of Lake Balaton you decide to explore, the water itself is spectacular.

View cottages near Lake Belaton



Lake Constance Lake Constance

Bordered by Germany, Switzerland and Austria and offering 270 kilometres of shoreline, Lake Constance is one of central Europe’s most picturesque places to holiday. Over half the shoreline lies within Germany, and offers amazing views across the stunning Swiss Alps; when you want to get back to nature and spend a week enjoying outdoor sports, there’s nowhere better than Lake Constance. When not lazing along the water’s edge, there are dozens of vineyards to explore - and wine to taste, of course! - as well as curious museums, pretty villages and historical attractions.

View cottages near Lake Constance



Lake Bled Lake Bled

Surrounded by the magnificent forests of the Julian Alps, Lake Bled is one of Slovenia’s - if not Europe’s - most beautiful lakes. The tiny village of Bled sits along its edge; serving as the Royal residence for centuries, and brimming with fascinating architectural sites, it’s a wonderful place to stay. As for the lake itself, there are a number of activities by which you can really make the most of your surroundings: from canoeing to swimming, Slovenia’s Lake Bled is one of the most picturesque spots in the world in which to enjoy outdoor sports.

View cottages near Lake Bled


There are a couple of things, when on lakeside holidays, which will ensure you make the most of your break. Remember to bring or buy insect repellent, as you’ll be sure to meet critters along the shore; it’s all very well for nature enthusiasts, but we don’t want to be bitten all the same. Other must-haves include warm or waterproof clothing, as when you’re staying in the mountains, the weather isn’t guaranteed to deliver never-ending sunshine. But even if you catch a rainy spell, remember: there’s no such thing as bad weather; just bad clothes!

Lakeside Holiday Homes

Peaceful Location, 500 Meter Walk To Beach

Five bedroom villa 300m2, built / finished in 2010. Has a fully fenced garden of 700m2 with inside parking for 2 cars. FREE WIFI. Riva 30km, Salo 20km. Toscalano/Maderno 3km. Bogliaco centre 1km. Gargnano centre 3km. Bogliaco Golf Club and Restau...

COMFORTABLE APARTMENT 70M2 in a village house, fully restored

'THE APARTMENT is a welcome ALL COMFORT place for 5 people in the center of the village, close to all amenities. IT IS ALL INCLUSIVE: - TASTING THE ARRIVAL of Provençal specialties, - LINEN - BED (natural cotton) - LINEN - THE BOX AND COFFEE - PRO...

Great charming, dominant 180 ° view of the lake, 3 minutes walk to the lake

Great house with 2 floors with sea view, sunny. Located in the village of Colonno. House decorated with the French, custom furniture, comfortable and functional. Ideally located between Como and Menaggio, near the piers for Bellagio, Varenna, Menn...

Pleasant provencal cottage with swimming-pool and beautiful view on to montvento

cotage in nature, with swimmingpool. 3 km of buis les baronnies (drôme provençale), 15 km of vaison la romaine and 60 km of avignon.

Superb 2 Pieces rare. Skis on in the center of Val Claret

More apartments and schedule updates at www. appartatignes. com Superb 2 rooms, south facing balcony, 47 m2, in the heart of Val Claret, with direct access to the snow front. Standard mountain decor, location, south facing bay window. American cu...

Fantastic duplex apartment for 6 people recently renovated. Ski in/out location

Sleeps 6 people - foot of piste - ski in and ski out - Tignes offers snow sure skiing in an extensive area linked with Val d'Isère 'Espace Killy'. Enjoy pre-season skiing on Tignes glacier 'Grande Motte' and ski as late as MAY!!! Glacier skiing al...


Completly renovated appart - in TIGNES GRANDE MOTTE - résidence LE ROND POINT DES PISTES - fully equipment - nice mountain decoration - Large open vue on the GLACIER DE LA GRANDE MOTTE - Ski in and ski out - Center of Espace killy - 50 m from a...

Rare 3 rooms, renovated center Tignes Val Claret

This apartment building is Le Curling A, on the seventh floor, in the heart of Tignes Val Claret, the center of Curling Place. This beautiful 3 deluxe rooms of 65 m2, cozy, bright, warm and functional, is located in the center of Val Claret, the s...


At this apartment building Les Hauts du Val Claret A1, in the center of the square and Curling Skiing feet. This charming studio apartment of 18m2 and maximum 2 persons, tastefully decorated, with a north facing balcony with views of the Tuffs. It...

Peaceful Location Yet Less Than 3 Miles From Windermere

Our spacious, light and airy lodge, a perfect place to relax, has been recently refurbished and is situated 3 miles from Windermere on 5* Limefitt Park. A tranquil site with stunning views away from the bustling town of Windermere, yet close enoug...

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