About a 15 minutes drive from Cortona, it is possible to visit Lake Trasimeno, one of the largest Italian lakes.
Thanks to the the low tide, the “Oasi Valley” is an interesting part of the lake from a natural perspective; it is a stop for birds during the migration period.
On Trasimeno Lake there are 3 islands: Polvese, Maggiore, Minore.
Polvese island, the biggest one, is located on the southern part of the lake. Since 1995 the island has been used for scientific research and environmental experiments. Due to the high humidity, the southern part is a refuge for several birds species.
Maggiore island is the only inhabited and it has 18 people living there permanently.
It is possible to reach the island by ferry from Tuoro Sul Trasimeno, Passignano sul Trasimeno and Castiglione del Lago. Walking along the paths on the island, one can admire the typically Mediterranean plant life such as the olive trees and the pines.
Minore island, the smallest one, is fwooded and a refuge for cormorants.
Around Lake Trasimeno there are some characteristic villages including: Castiglione del Lago with its bastion and Passignano with its fortress. In both places there are also good lake fish restaurants.