One cannot deny the beauty of Lake Garda, but it’s a relief to escape to the unpopulated land of Lombardy. This 19th-century cascina has been in the Serenelli family for two generations; siblings Vittorio and Anna are justly proud of their 28-hectare working family farm. Everything is organic, solar panels provide electricity and a wood-chip burner the heating. Le Sorgive, crowned with a pierced dovecote, houses the rooms, flanked by carriage house and stables. Big guest rooms, with wooden rafters, are a mix of old and new. Some have attractive, metalwork beds, some a balcony, two have a mezzanine with beds for the children, all are crisp and clean. This is a great place for families to visit as there’s so much to do: horse riding and mountain biking from the farm, go-karting and archery nearby, watersports, including scuba diving courses, at Garda. There is also a large gym and a well-maintained pool. Anna runs Le Volpi, the cascina only a stroll away where you can sample gnocchi, Mantovan sausages and mouthwatering fruit tarts – great value.