The turquoise shores of the lake neighbour our leafy green vineyards. We are in the heart of Lugana, a stone’s throw from the shores of beautiful Sirmione, the Pearl of Lake Garda, rich in history and breathtaking views.
In Sirmione you can visit the Scaligero Castle, with its romantic swallow tail battlements and its enclosed harbour that shelters boats; the Roman villa of Catullus, where the poet found inspiration on its lush shores and Mount Baldo, which protects the lake from a distance; Jamaica, one of the 10 wildest and most beautiful beaches in Italy.
But words are not enough to describe all this, you have to experience it to believe it.
The Scaliger fortress, with its towers and fortifications, is the symbol of Sirmione. You can stroll around its walkways, once occupied by ruthless soliders, admire the harbour that once sheltered ships and fishing boats and climb up the highest tower of the Castle to enjoy a breathtaking view down the peninsula and the lake.
The Grottoes of Catullus
Sirmione has always been the destination of anyone who wants to be charmed by its landscape. Among the first people to holiday here was the Latin poet Catullus, whose marvellous villa is right on the tip of the peninsula. As you walk among the ruins, colonnades, thermal pools and ancient olive trees, you will become completely lost in the beauty of the lake.
Punta Grò and the fisherman’s houses
Sirmione is not just at the tip of the peninsula. There are many other suggestive places to visit, for example in Lugana you can visit Punta Grò, a large green open space dotted with Poplars that overlook the lake. There is a pleasant 20 minute walk from behind Lugana Church to reach the typical fishermen’s cottages on the lake shore.
Stroll through the streets of medieval town
Lose yourself in the narrow and enchanting lanes of the old town of Sirmione, with ancient archways, stone walls, the church of Santa Maria della Neve, the ruins of San Salvatore and the beautiful church of Saint Anna in front of the castle. Then go to the romantic beach of the muses and observe the colourful bougainvillea that dominates one of the small squares in the historic town centre.
Take a dip in Jamaica, one of the 10 wildest beaches in Italy
Jamaica is one of the ten wildest and most beautiful beaches in Italy, so called because of its turquoise water. You can sunbathe on its long and flat stones, which turn pink at sunset, cool off in the shade of the olive trees, or dive into the blue lake water. If you can turn your gaze away from the lake you discover that you are directly under the ruins of the Grottoes of Catullus.
San Pietro in Mavino Church
Legend has it that the fishermen of Sirmione built the ancient Romanesque church of San Pietro in Mavino. It seems to date back to the VIII century where there were once vineyards. “Mavino” in fact means “ad summa vineas” a place where the vineyards are situated on higher land.
Inside you will be fascinated and enchanted by the frescoes of the XII-XVI century with Christ enthroned, the Madonna and saints with big eyes.
The Spa Baths
After walking up and down the peninsula, why not take a moment to relax at the Terme di Sirmione-Aquaria spa baths. You can enjoy beautiful sunsets completely immersed in the warm sulphurous waters and swim between the indoor and outdoor pools in the gardens.
Canoeing along the peninsula
Another way to enjoy Sirmione? From the water! You could take a boat trip, enjoy one of the many organized tours, or if your arms are strong enough and you want to experience a little adventure, take up the paddle and sail around the peninsula in a canoe.
A cycle ride among the vineyards
What is the best way to visit the vineyards? By bicycle! There are many cycle trails and riding through the Sirmione countryside is priceless. Whether in the summer, when the vines are a bright emerald green, or in the autumn when the vines are yellow and red, Lugana is worth visiting in any season.
Sirmione’s sunsets are amazing, from every point of view, but our favourite places to watch the sun go down is either in the vineyard or at Jamaica Beach, where the last light of the day tinges the lake and the white rocks on the beach with rose pink hues.
Sirmione what a show!
Sirmione is not just history and nature but also great events. In addition to the exhibitions at the Palazzo Callas Exhibition Centre there are other dates that must not be missed such as the Homage to Maria Callas (a festival in honour of the Divina opera singer, who loved spending her holidays in Sirmione). Saturday at the Palace, theatre shows and the Sirmione Photographic Award (a photography contest in Sirmione, which in recent years has also become a Photo Marathon in the streets of Sirmione).
Mille Miglia, the most beautiful race in the world
The “Mille Miglia” is a vintage car race. Also known as “the most beautiful in the world”, it runs along the Brescia-Rome-Brescia route and makes a stop in Sirmione, where the cars are usually paraded in front of the castle, stamped and checked. It is a spectacular competition that combines the charm of vintage cars with stunning Italian scenery, especially that of Lake Garda. It traditionally takes place in May.