A fascinating and magical peninsula, which has been considered an exclusive place since the times when an inn was built there, among the oldest hotels in Italy, which hosted illustrious personalities. Since the Renaissance, it has hosted names such as Pietro Aretino, Napoleon, Tsar Alexander II, Prince Charles of England, Winston Churchill, the King of Naples, and also the director Laurence Olivier.
Today Punta San Vigilio is a place of great romance and atmosphere, part of the municipality of Garda (Verona) but not a public place, let’s see why.
The peninsula on the eastern shore of Garda, absolutely not to be missed
Considered the Portofino of Lake Garda for its refinement and frequentations, Punta San Vigilio is a privately owned place, belonging to the Guarienti di Brenzone family.
Both the peninsula and the Bay of the Sirens (nearby) are part of the Guarienti heritage, but accessible for passage and, in the case of the Bay, the beach can be enjoyed through a paid “ticket”.
The sunset from this strip of land is fabulous, and here there is a truly recommended walk for those who love romantic landscapes and want to discover a unique scenario on Garda. Already in 1787, Goethe praised this location, which is thrilling with every visit, writing “How much I wish my friends were with me for a moment and could enjoy the view before me!” praising Punta San Vigilio as a “wonder of nature, an enchanting spectacle“.
What to see in Punta San Vigilio
This corner of beauty is always worth a visit, and in any case, there are several things to do and see.
First of all, there is the aforementioned walk that passes through a long avenue of cypress trees and that allows you to reach the Villa Guarienti nearby, built by the Renaissance architect Michele Sanmicheli. Those who had it built were lovers of peace and beauty and adopted the motto “Beatus ille qui procul negotii” (blessed is he who removes material concerns): it was Agostino Brenzone, a humanist and philosopher, who composed the treatise “Della vita solitaria” right here.
Villa Guarienti is a sixteenth-century villa that houses a small church and an Italian garden. Attached to the villa is also a double loggia building overlooking the lake, used as a hotel with adjacent facilities that are part of a four-star restaurant and the famous inn. The villa reflects in Garda, and becomes a suggestive location ideal for organizing events and parties, including weddings that can be booked.
The marina of Punta San Vigilio
For those who love the marinas on Lake Garda, this one cannot be missed, as it presents a nice entrance arch with a plaque that defines this place as a place to leave business and worries in the city. From here, you can admire the scenario represented by the lake and the mountain that dominates it in front, with the Rocca di Manerba and the Gulf of Salò as protagonists. From the marina, you can also reach the Stella rock where the view is considered unique.
Touristically, Punta San Vigilio is famous for the ancient inn, where you can stop at the wine bar and drink while admiring the landscape.
The inn offers 12 rooms with a lake view, and from which you can access the spectacular lemon and olive grove park. There is also a relaxation area in the green, with a swimming pool. The Bay of the Sirens annexed, is instead considered a public bathing center – as we have seen, subject to a ticket.
The beach of Punta San Vigilio
For those who want to dive or sunbathe in this location, one of the most beautiful on Garda, the beaches to choose from are the Bay of the Sirens and the Naturist Beach.
The first, as we said, is for a fee and offers various services, while the second is located in the part of Punta San Vigilio towards Torri del Benaco and hosts a beach for nudists and gay-friendly. You can reach it on foot or by bike about 500 meters after the Bay of the Sirens before encountering the indications for Torri del Benaco.
How to reach Punta San Vigilio
You can start from Garda and reach it with a lakefront walk, but you can also comfortably reach it by bike or by car. The walk takes about 3 kilometers, and presents some unpaved stretches.
The most suggestive journey is the one to reach Punta San Vigilio by boat from Garda, and in particular early in the morning, when there is not excessive crowding. There are several tours that depart from Sirmione to then reach Punta San Vigilio and stop for an aperitif before lunch, or to stop and visit the locality.
To reach Punta San Vigilio by car you can take the Gardesana SR249 and follow the sign that indicates Villa Guarienti and the Bay of the Sirens.
Once you have arrived, the parking lots are subject to a fee except for those who enter the Bay of the Sirens, whose ticket includes parking.