If your desire is to get to know this small town you can prepare yourself to discover a center that has lived, since ancient times, on the beauty and richness of its peninsula. A glimpse of land that creeps into the lower Lake Garda which over the centuries has been inhabited by the local populations of the Neolithic, by the Romans, as a military outpost of the Lombards, by the Venetian Serenissima and finally … by the many tourists who populate Sirmione every year , its spas and beaches.
One of the most suggestive towns at Lake Garda
A must see, if you are in the Benaco area (the ancient name of Lake Garda), the village is easy to reach and has many surprises, if you wonder what to see in Sirmione.
Its charm is extraordinary, and the so-called “pearl of Garda” welcomes you at the end of the peninsula which plunges for about 4 km between the blue waters, creating (in some places) a view from both sides of the lake. Arriving in the center of Sirmione you feel the elegance, the colors and the reflected light into the little street that reach you to the famous quiet beaches. Even if you only live it for a day, Sirmione reserves you one of the most romantic walks in Italy, around the medieval village.
Above all, to get inside the Medieval Sirmione (and to the Thermal Water of this town) you will pass through the imposing fortified castle, which seems to float on the water.
The castle of Sirmione, the legacy of the Scaligeri family
Sirmione is known for its castle on the water with an unique architecture in the world, the cast was built in the thirteenth century thanks to the Scaligeri family, the old lords of Verona.
This lake fortification is still intact as at the time of its construction, well preserved since the times when it protected the village, which was reached by crossing the bridge – the only way to access the historic center.
Still today, the Scaliger Castle of Sirmione is surrounded by a clear water, with an amazing panoramic view of the lake from the top of the towers and of the fortified walls. The Castle of Sirmione is open every day and can be visited inside but keep attention because there is a legend regarding the castle: it’s inhabited by a disturbing ghost.
Thermal SPA of Sirmione
Since Roman times the town has been famous as a spa resort, one of the most prestigious centers in Italy for its baths and regenerating treatments, thanks to the composition of his particular waters which gush out at around 37°C.
The waters of the Terme di Sirmione have been used for centuries for thermal treatments, in particular for disorders of the respiratory, cardiovascular, osteo-articular systems, for motor rehabilitation, at a dermatological and gynecological level, as well as for massages. If you arrive in Sirmione and want to enjoy the benefits of its waters, you must go to the establishments and spas. If you spend a day at the spa you can choose between thermal pools, steam baths, mud baths, whirlpools, saunas, wellness programs, emotional showers and various services for aesthetic and curative treatment. Enjoy!
Grotte di Catullo, the ancient panorama on Garda
It is one of the most important Roman domus in all of northern Italy, preserved over the centuries until now. The ruins were already called in the fifteenth century “Grotte di Catullo” in honor of the Latin poet, Catullo, who attended Sirmione (according to some historians this could be his father’s villa) and dedicated passionate verses to this land.
The caves are said to be the numerous rooms of this imposing Roman house, which over time have been covered by vegetation. Probably chosen for the fabulous view of Lake Garda, the so-called Villa di Catullo, extends for about 2 hectares and, to date, is still a “mysterious” site. Inside the park of the villa, there is also the Archaeological Museum of Sirmione, which hosts the ruins of the other Roman villas on Lake Garda and other amazing medieval archaeological finds.
Prestigious houses in Sirmione
Between 1952 and 1958, Sirmione was the home of the divine soprano Maria Callas. A place of peace that Callas adored to the point of writing, in a letter, of wanting to end her days in what she considered an “earthly paradise”. The “queen” took up a room at the Villa Meneghini, that has been re-named Villa Callas, an elegant building that still lives today, also transformed into several luxury apartments. Another building is named with her nam, the Palazzo Maria Callas, thas is located in the center of Sirmione, which represents an artistic center for exhibitions, conferences and events.
Sirmione and the most beautiful beaches of the Garda Lake
This is the most touristic part but it’s also one of the most beautiful of this town as the beaches of Sirmione are very popular. Most of the bathing establishments in Sirmione are well equipped, but the most beautiful beaches are located close to the Catullo Caves.
The most popular is the Jamaica Beach, named as the tropical country because of his white rocks and crystal clear water. You can access this beach through the gate near the entrance to the Caves.
Near the historic center of Sirmione, however, you will find the Muse beach (spiaggia delle Muse); a little lido with free access behind the Scaliger castle, perfect for immersing yourself in water at the foot of the fortress walls.
Poco più avanti, seguendo la strada panoramica della Passeggiata delle Bionde, sbuchi in un litorale considerato tra i più affascinanti e attrezzati del Garda, il lido delle Bionde.
A little further on, following the scenic route of the Promenade of the Blonds, you come out on a shoreline considered to be one of the most fascinating and well-equipped of the Garda, the Lido delle Bionde.
For the laziest … in Sirmione there is always the possibility of a boat ride on Lake Garda: you can rent a motor boat, even with the driver, and go to visit other places on the Brescia and Veronese shores in a few minutes!