While in Bardolino, we went in a day trip to Sirmione, one of the most beautiful peninsulas of the word. Lake Garda is Italy’s bigger lake bordered by the Eastern Alps and the most beautiful villages you can imagine.
Italy never stops to amaze me! Although almost impossible, Brescia, Bardolino, Peschiera di Garda and Sirmione made me see a different Italy. Different and yet so familiar.
For sure the lakes are something else and now I understand why so many, like George Clooney choose Italy’s lakes as their home. I mean, you want to move in here that’s sure!
And look how it was our day visiting Sirmione Lake Garda Italy:
Arriving in Sirmione with the ferry
We took an early boat from Bardolino*, and arrived in Sirmione at about 10:30. Immediately after debarking, we were surprised to see how animated was the city! I mean lots of hotels were already closed, like the famous and magnificent 5 stars Hotel Villa Cortine!
*Timetable and prices for the public transport ferries here. From Bardolino, round trip we paid 19,20 euro – it was a beautiful journey on the lake!
Don’t get me wrong but it was the end of the season here at the end of October, I can imagine how this place looks like in full season!
Sirmione is a narrow peninsula of only 3 square kilometers, with thermal brings, a water castle, medieval churches and beautiful architecture. Then, great food, amazing ice-cream, shops and perfect places to just hang out.
Peninsula tour with Sirmione boats
Immediately after we arrived, we went in a peninsula tour, with Sirmione boats. While in the season are lots of trips available, now this was the only one.
The tour is wonderful as you get to see many beautiful sights and also to enter the castle gates in a small boat which is so nice! I wrote here about our tour, with more details about the trip!
Wandering around the peninsula
There are many things to do in Sirmione, you can even go to the beach, or to the Thermal Baths. And shopping, as there are some beautiful stores with unique merchandise, perfumes, jewelries and more. Amazing quality.
Visit the Scaliger castle – a beautiful 13 centuries castle. Here you enter only using the mobile bridges, as the castle is surrounded by waters. It belonged to the powerful family Scaliger, from Verona. If you wanna see the best views of Sirmione from above, get in the castle’s tower!
Grotte de Catatullo – ruins of a huge Roman villa, it will leave you breathless!
Beach, thermal public baths, parks – in Sirmiofe there are some public beaches, a public thermal kind of rocky beach but where people do bath and some beautiful parks. Small parks, it is a small peninsula, yet very charming. You can also admire Maria Callas villa.
Churches: Sant’Anna della Rocca, 12 century, near the castle. The frescoes are from 14-17 centuries. Then there is San Pietro in Mavino church, bult in 765 AC, that was renovated in the 14 century – on a hill. Also you may want to visit Santa Maria Maggiore, a church that is right in the old center, 15 century, including the frescoes.
And wander, wander the peninsula. This place is amazing – everywhere it is the perfect view. You know that destinations, where there are magnificent buildings and then some not so great. It is not the case of everything I saw in Lake Garda: each street/place/building is amazingly beautiful and well maintained. So whenever you’ll go, will end up in a beautiful place!
Food and drink – indulge in Sirmione
Pizza at Ristorante ”Al Grifone” – or another small restaurant. Grifone is a small cozy restaurant near the Scalier castle. The pizza is great, so the other products and then the beer was also amazing.
Prosecco in Giuste Carducci Square – the square where is the ferry station. Here there are many restaurants and pizza houses, the perfect place for people watching. And to enjoy the sun! Along with a prosecco, ice cream, cappuccino, whatever.
Eat a lot of ice-cream – ”artigianale” traditional style even! There are so many ”Gelaterias” – ice cream shops in Sirmiofe so it is very difficult to choose. They are all great, so… just pick one. I look a white chocolate one, was very smooth and with huge chocolate pieces inside, amazing!
There are so many beautiful places to stay in Lake Garda and in Sirmione! We stayed in the 4 stars Aqualux Resort SPA & Suites in Bardolino, which is a great choice also if you want to do some hiking or mountain bike etc. The beautiful thing in Lake Garda is that you can easily visit all the places and villages, with the ferries, boats, buses, cars etc.
But, no matter where you want to stay, the best is to book in advance, the hotels, villas are all full in the season!
And take a look at the Sirmione blog, for more inspiration:
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