Difference between revisions of "Sirmione"
Revision as of 12:59, 23 June 2013
Sirmione is a walled historic resort town near the tip of the 3.3km long Sirmio peninsula on the southern shore of Lake Garda in province of Brescia, in Lombardy northern Italy.
The Sirmione commune encompasses the modern town of Colombare which stretches inland from the base of the peninsula.
Settlements on the Sirmo peninsula have been traced back to over 5,000 years BC. In Roman times the peninsula was used as a resort by the rich and powerful.
With its unique peninsular position the town was an important centre of power in medieval times controlling traffic in the southern part of the lake. The preserved historic town with its' entrance guarded by the turreted 13th century Scaliger Castle with its' drawbridge fortified harbour attracts many day visitors. The only land access to the old town is via the castle drawbridge, vehicular access to the old town is restricted by permit.
The town is connected to other resorts on the lake by ferry, the ferry jetty is located in the historic area in the Piazza Gisose Carducci.
13th century Scaliger Castle with its' drawbridge form the only entrance to the town, the magnificently restored castle is very popular with day trippers and in high season can be very overcrowded.
Catullo's Grotto is the he excavated ruins (scavi) of the massive Roman villa at the headland on the tip of the peninsula. The villa is known as "Grotte di Catullo" (Catullo's Caves) stuns the visitor with its' amazing scale. A small museum at the entrance provides some extra interest. There are wonderful views from the headland and a wonderful olive grove with magnificently gnarled ancient trees.
Visitors staying in the historic part of Sirmione may enjoy a stroll out to the villa scavi after breakfast before the sun gets too hot and the crowds too hectic. There is a small park and cafe at the museum entrance which provides a welcome chance to cool off.
As with other towns on the southern part of Lake Garda Sirmione enjoys a a particularly pleasant climate in the summer months characterised by hazy sunshine and gentle breezes. Rain storms do occur and while infrequent can spectacular.
Sirmione is well served by the lake ferry service which connects the town to almost all the other resorts on Lake Garda. However be aware the ferry fares are no longer as cheap as they once were particularly if undertaking journeys to the northern half of the lake. Also bBe aware Lake Garda is very large and an excursion from Sirmione by ferry to a northern town on the lake such as Riva will take full day Daily Hop-on Hop-off tickets are available, the "Bottom of the Lake" ticket is particularly handy for visiting other towns such as Garda and Bardolino if staying in Sirmione.