Well Planned Travel

Sirmione on Lake Garda Italy

Lake Garda is the largest lake in Italy. It is half-way between Brescia and Verona, and between Venice and Milan.  While Lake Como is much more beautiful, the town of Sirmione is worth a visit even as a side trip from Verona.
Lake Guarda

Lake Garda

About Sirmione Sirmione traces its history from the 6th or 5th century B.C. and starting in the 1st century it became a vacation stop for rich people from Verona including the poet Catullus who praised the beauties of the city and spoke of a villa he had in the area. Later it fell under the power of the noble family of the Scaliger, was a possession of the Republic of Venice from 1405 until 1797, later the Habsburg Empire and became part of the Kingdom of Italy in 1860.  Sirmione is a small peninsula that sticks out into the lake. IMGP1526.JPG Visiting Sirmione Getting to Sirmione can be easy. The nearest railway stations to Sirmione are at Peschiera.  From Peschiera you can take a bus or take a taxi, it is about 11km (7 miles).  You can also take the train to Desenzano and take the bus or taxi from there as well.  It is about 10km (a little more than 6 miles)from there.  You can also drive, it is about 45 km (28 miles) from Verona, 140km (87 miles) to Milan and 150 km (93 miles) to Venice. What to do in Sirmione The main sight in Sirmione is the Scaliger Castle. The castle had been built in the 13th century and had been a port fortification.  The castle dominates the landscape of the town and has a large moat where ducks and swans can be seen today. There are 150 steps which lead up to the ramparts and the tower is open to public for viewing. Castello Scaligero is one of the few medieval port castles to be so well preserved and which has with the walls fenced "darsena". Darsena is a dock and was a place of refuge of the Scaligeri fleet.
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Ancient Gate

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Beautiful walls

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Water Gate

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medieval port castle

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The castle

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Walls and Lake Garda

Castello Scaligero

Castello Scaligero

Grotte di Catullo is another main sight in Sirmione.  It is not a Grotto but the ruins of two villas one which was believed to be owned by the poet Catullus. The ruins are at the top of the isthmus and are hard to find.  You have to walk through the historic center and past the  villas to the top the entrance is on the right.
The beach at the end of Grotte di Catullo

The beach at the end of Grotte di Catullo

The Town Sirmione is a resort town, so there is plenty of places to stay, shop and eat.  The streets are tiny and winding and there is plenty of trinkets for sale and gelato.  Expect to eat a long outdoor meal and as there are lots of outdoor restaurants.  There are plenty of regional wine including Lugana, Custoza, Garganega, Trebbiano di Lugana all of which are white wines and will go well with the lake fish that you can eat there.  If you are tired from walking, there are thermal hot springs and if you like adventures you can windsurf.  There are places to stay for the ultra rich with villas and fancy hotels to budget hotels, well semi-budget hotels, if you want to stay in a truly budget hotel, you will need to stay in a different town.
In Sirmione you will find lots of outdoor restaurants. Expect to spend long lingering meals there.

In Sirmione you will find lots of outdoor restaurants. Expect to spend long lingering meals there.

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One of many outdoor restaurants

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Long meals are a must here

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Gelato is a #1 requirement when visiting Sirmione

Gelato is a #1 requirement when visiting Sirmione

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Beautiful buildings are everywhere

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There is not an ugly area of this place

Enjoy walking around the winding streets and look at the colorful buildings

Enjoy walking around the winding streets and look at the colorful buildings

Lots of places to shop and by trinkets.

Lots of places to shop and buy trinkets.

Sirmione is a great place to visit, whether you are coming for a day trip or spending some time relaxing.  Sirmione has something for everyone.
Sirmione has something for everyone

Sirmione has something for everyone

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