Lake Garda, Connecticut, USA

Welcome to the ultimate guide to Lake Garda — things to do, where to stay, fun facts, history, stats and more. Let’s dive in!

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Looking for Lake Garda cabins or other accommodations? Save time and use this interactive map to find, compare and book at the best rates. Or explore our comprehensive list of favorite travel partners.

All About Lake Garda

Shortly after World War I Harry Battistoni left his home in Italy and immigrated to New Britain, Connecticut. He prospered in his new home and in the 1920’s bought two farms. Inspired by Lake Garda from his childhood, Battistoni dammed a creek-Rose Brook-and created his own Lake Garda. He dreamed of creating a summer community with cabins and tent camping for families. Today his dream is a reality with family homes nestled along the wooded shoreline of beautiful Lake Garda.

After creating the lake, Battistoni built a clubhouse and established a lake association to collect dues and maintain the roads and facilities. In 1943 the property owners banded together to form the Lake Garda Improvement Association (LGIA). Several clashes including some litigation between Battistoni and the LGIA marred the lake’s history, but eventually all were resolved. In 1998 years after Battistoni’s death, the LGIA bought the Lake Garda Dam and some remaining property and currently manage and protect the lake and surrounding facilities.

There is lakefront real estate available for sale and anyone who purchases a home or lot on Lake Garda automatically becomes a member of the LGIA with all the inherent privileges and responsibilities. The responsibilities are minimal – just annual dues and abiding by the homeowner rules. The privileges are extensive and include access to the private lake from one of the boat ramps for fishing, boating, canoeing and kayaking. There are also several beaches for homeowners including Battistoni Beach named in honor of Lake Garda’s creator. In the winter ice fishing, skating and hockey are all popular with residents.

Lake Garda straddles the line between the communities of Burlington (Litchfield Hills region) and Farmington (River Valley region) with easy access to both towns. In fact, it is mandated by the LGIA that it have board members from both communities. The area that would become the Town of Farmington was originally settled by the Tunxis Tribe. European settlers moved into the area in 1640 and in 1645 the land was incorporated into the Town of Farmington. It included present day Burlington which wasn’t separated out until 1721. Both towns still maintain their rich histories and small town charm. Lake Garda is in Hartford County near Unionville in the quiet central interior of Connecticut, and any amenities a visitor or resident might want are a short drive away including shopping, restaurants, and a variety of accommodations.

Nearby in Burlington, the Nassahegon State Forest has 1,352 acres to explore. Established in 1926, the forest is made up of mixed hardwoods and spruce and pine plantations. It is a fantastic place to bird watch or hunt, and there are trails for hiking across the forest.

With its lakefront homes, Lake Garda may have become more elaborate than Harry Battistoni’s original dream of cabins and tent sites. With its beautiful water, caring community and wooded shore, however, it is still every bit his “paradise in the pines.” Careful management by the Lake Garda Improvement Association ensures it will stay that way far into the future.

Things to Do at Lake Garda

  • Vacation Rentals
  • Fishing
  • Ice Fishing
  • Boating
  • Swimming
  • Beach
  • Canoeing
  • Kayaking
  • Camping
  • Cabin Rentals
  • Hiking
  • Hunting
  • State Forest
  • Shopping

Find Places to Stay at Lake Garda

If you’re considering a Lake Garda lake house rental or hotel, we’ve made it super easy to find the best rates and compare vacation accommodations at a glance. Save time using this interactive map below.

Recommended Sites to Book a Lake Garda Vacation

If you want to take a deeper dive to find waterfront lake cabins, cottages, condos, hotels or resorts, check out our favorite Lake Garda lodging partners.

  • VRBO – Use VRBO to find the perfect lake rental home, condo, cabin, cottage or other vacation property.
  • – One of the world’s leading digital travel companies, connects travelers to everything from cozy B&Bs to luxury resorts.
  • Expedia – Expedia is a popular online travel agency with more than 140,000 lodging properties worldwide.
  • – With more than 325,000 hotels in 19,000-plus locations, is an industry leader in online accommodations.
  • TripAdvisor – Read traveler reviews and compare prices on hotels, vacation rentals and more at TripAdvisor.
  • Trivago – Trivago helps travelers compare deals for hotels and other accommodations from a variety of booking sites.
  • KAYAK – KAYAK scours hundreds of other travel websites at once to find the best deals on hotels and other travel-related services.
  • RVshare –RVshare connects travelers interested in renting a motorhome with owners who have RVs to rent.
  • CampSpot – Campspot offers premier RV resorts, family campgrounds, cabins and glamping options across North America.

Note: These are affiliate links so we may earn a small commission if you book through them. While there is no extra cost to you, it helps provide resources to keep our site running (thank you)! You can read our full disclosure policy here.

Lake Garda Statistics & Helpful Links


Lake Type: Artificial Reservoir, Dammed

Water Level Control: Lake Garda Improvement Association

Surface Area: 43 acres

Average Depth: 5 feet

Maximum Depth: 15 feet

Completion Year: 1925

We strive to keep the information on LakeLubbers as accurate as possible. However, if you’ve found something in this article that needs updating, we’d certainly love to hear from you! Please fill out our Content Correction form.

Shop Lake Garda Gifts

Custom Lake Tumblers

Captain / First Mate Custom 20 oz Tumbler

Custom Lake T Shirt

Personalized My Boat My Rules Unisex T-Shirt

Custom Lake Coffee Mug - On Lake Time

On Lake Time Custom Coffee Mug – 11oz or 15oz


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