Sirmione, Italy

When you’re on the road in Europe, travelling from place to place, you make occasional stops. Sometimes those are just restaurants by the road, and sometimes you’ll stop in a smaller but popular tourist destination. If you’re passing through Italy, you will probably stop to take a bite at Autogrill, or visit Pisa, Siena, Ravenna or Verona. But what about other small places that are not as popular but are also interesting and beautiful; places that are not crowded with tourists or traffic, where you can take a walk and stop for lunch or dinner.

When I was driving back home from Lugano (a town in Switzerland very dear to me), passing through Italian region of Lombardy, I turned and made a stop in Sirmione. Northeast part of Italy and Switzerland are beautiful because of many lakes in the area. Sirmione is situated on Lake Garda. This area was a favorite resort to rich families from Verona and other nearby cities from 1st century BC. During the Roman era Sirmione became a fortified strongpoint defending the southern shore of the lake, partially due to its position (look at the map). Over the centuries it came into possession of different kingdoms are republics. At one point the noble family of the Scaliger (Scaligeri), who were lords of Verona, took over the leadership. They built this castle below which is today about a thousand years old.

me in front of Scaglieri castle in Sirmione

Sirmione is a nice town to visit. There are a number of churches besides the Scaglieri castle and the ruins of Catullus residence. Maybe you read Gaius Valerius Catullus poetry and know who he was (he was an ancient Roman poet who lived in Sirmione). It was summer time when I visited. I took a walk, made some photos (as usual), stopped in some local shops to see what crafts they occupied with (mostly pottery and blacksmith)  and went to a local gallery.

local shopme in the local gallery

One of the things I liked the most is this house…looks even more unbelievable when you see it n front of you…

All in all, Sirmione was great. The amazing view of lake Garda, calm atmosphere of the town and a few interesting places were just right…

Did you make a stop in a smaller town that left an impression on you? Which is it?

Stella – European Travelling Advisor

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6 Responses to “Sirmione, Italy”

  1. January 29, 2009 at 4:50 pm

    Hi Stella .. Sirmione another for the list. We visited Lake Como, Florence, Pisa and the coast when we were kids .. & I have happy memories of sites seen & the countryside. I’ve been occasionally to other parts of Italy .. but again your descriptions & pictures are enticing .. well done – it’s always worth visiting your blog for an inspirational visit!!

    I look forward to your next post .. all the best Hilary

  2. 2 Stella Stopfer
    January 29, 2009 at 5:42 pm

    Hey Hilary,

    lake Como, lake Lugano…they are all so beautiful with towns and villas on the coast; and the landscapes – just amazing. I’ve been to both Florence and Pisa, so I know what you mean.
    Thanks Hilary for sharing!

    Stella – European Travelling Advisor

  3. January 31, 2009 at 11:14 am

    Stella, now that was beautiful. How wonderful it is to travel and see new things. I feel like I have taken a trip every time that I visit your blog. It is wonderful. Thank you for sharing.

    Dan and Deanna “Marketing unscrambled”

  4. 4 Stella Stopfer
    January 31, 2009 at 2:47 pm

    Hi Dan and Deanna!

    Thank you, it’s so nice to hear that people are responding to my stories… :)

    Stella – European Travelling Advisor

  5. February 12, 2009 at 2:35 am

    I’ve stopped at many wonderful small towns not in any guidebooks but just bacause they look so appealing and inviting. Countries such as Italy, France, Germany and Austria are full of themm and they often make for the best of experiences.

  6. 6 Stella Stopfer
    February 12, 2009 at 4:54 pm

    Hi Mark,

    I agree with you. I usually stop to those places to take a break for driving and I always enjoy the beauty; even more if I find something special or meet someone, which is not uncommon at all. Mostly I enjoy them because I love taking photos, and there is nothing like an undiscovered place to me.
    You’ll find most those places anywhere in the Mediterranean really. I think almost every country has them, the only difference is which country is more popular tourist destination and what do people think they like more.

    Thanks Mark for your comment and sharing your thoughts!

    Stella – European Travelling Advisor

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