Enjoy warm days and lighter, balmy evenings, long cool drinks and delicious ice creams on sun-filled terraces and in shady squares. European cities are often quieter, and more affordable, in high summer when their inhabitants flee for the coast. Lakes and mountains offer cooler climes and often a refreshing breeze.
We had not undertaken continental rail travel before, so we had some concerns about things that could go wrong. However, the whole travel plan went like clockwork. All trains and taxis were on time, booked seats were as they should be and food and accommodation along the way was all to a high standard.
We were very impressed with the Hotel Canal Grande, it fitted the bill perfectly. Lovely hotel, charming staff and great location. We absolutely loved Venice and felt that the first class rail trip to and from it was a real luxury, well-paced and via interesting locations (Zurich and Montreux).
Our side trip to Lake Garda as a separate arrangement also fitted in well with our trip.