Spring in Europe [Part 1] | Sirmione, Italy

Winding through mountainous terrain to get to Sirmione, Lake Garda from Bressanone started off wonderfully breathtaking. Unfortunately, I get car sick and mountain roads are not my friends. When we finally got back onto Bianca-friendly roads, I noticed how the landscape was slowly changing as we drove further from the North. It was March and spring had arrived. Trees and plants were blooming in a multitude of colours. Daffodils and speed traps lined the road as we drove along Lake Garda, watching our speed like our lives depended on it. Oh, Europe.

We pre-booked a place to stay in Sirmione and pre-registered our car plate number. When we arrived at the bridge leading into the main town, we were stopped by guards, who then waved us through after a cross-check on their list of expected cars. This is to control traffic within the town, because…tiny. Narrow laned cobblestoned streets, sprinkled with oblivious tourists strolling in the middle, obviously made for a stress-free ride as we tried to look for the hotel, Albergo Marconi. A quaint family-owned hotel, we quickly acquainted ourselves with the lake view and our beds.

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Next stop? Food. Why? Because Italian Pizza. Specifically Ristorante Pizzeria La Roccia. Delicious, as expected. After the hearty meal, we made our way to Sirmione’s main attraction – Grotte di Catullo (Grotto of Catullus) located right at the tip of the Sirmione Peninsula. Roman ruins of a private edifice surrounded by olive groves and cliffs staring down into clear green-blue waters and all but some wooden rails and “Pericolo” signs to warn us of the dangers below.

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Once we were done playing Indiana Jones, we walked through the residential area nearby the Roman ruins and found a lane lined with the lake on one side and a tall stone wall on the other. We skipped pebbles and pointed at skinks sunning themselves on the wall. We found hedges of rosemary taller than we were, in full bloom and smelling delicious. We also couldn’t help ourselves but to stop a couple of times to pet cats and dogs. By this time we were really thirsty, so we set out to find a place to quench our thirst and enjoy the sunset.

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Ristorante Pizzeria Al Pescatore offered a mouthwatering menu of fresh pesce (fish), which sold us instantaneously. Faces stuffed and bodies exhausted, we gratefully said hello once more to our beds.

We woke up to the smell of freshly baked pastries and pretty much teleported down to the hotel restaurant. After stuffing my face once again, I had the great idea to take bread and feed the birds outside. A feeding frenzy followed and it got a little cray, all to the fortune of budding photographers and copycat kids…my brother told me to get more bread. I snuck in to grab more bread and got caught redhanded and was strictly told not to feed the birds. I said I was getting it for myself, tore off a small piece, shoved it into my mouth and walked away extremely embarrassed.

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It was our last day anyway…

On our way out, a castle in the sky bade us farewell (The castle is called Scaliger Castle and dates back to the 13th Century). Sirmione is a great little lake town for a one night stay, but try to avoid human traffic time (peak seasons)!

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Sendin postcards from Italy is the most costly out of all the places I’ve posted from previously. It costs a whopping €2, excluding the price of the postcard. Also notoriously slow, but at least the postcard arrived. I kept it classy by getting my brother to censor it with Gary.

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