The past few days of our time on Lake Garda, saw us happily adapting to the gentle pace of life here so that starting the return journey proved quite a jolt to the system for us holiday hedonists.
A delicious ‘penne all’arrabbiata’ was a good precursor to our journey, so with a slightly emotional air, we said goodbye to our favourite restaurant and hotel staff. Setting off in good time with friendly airport taxi driver, I enjoyed an exchange of Anglo-Italian conversation and learnt more lake bumf. To our delight, the driver suggested a quick detour en route to see the attractive town of Sirmione.
It’s a place I’d heard and read about, and certainly sounded alluring, so rather than the airport we got to spend an hour exploring the area.
Sirmione is beautiful. Positioned on a promontory at the southern end of the lake between Desenzano and Peschiera, we were very taken with the ‘Rocca Scaligera’, which is a breathtaking 13th century castle.
We were also lucky enough to see the remains of ‘Villa Romana’ – a Roman villa set in olive groves - with spectacular views across the lake, where I had a brief but enjoyable DH Lawrence moment! Our weary cameras got yet another workout, having thought they’d retired, as we took in the gorgeous location and sights. The village even has thermal springs just to add to its many charms.
After this we headed to a cafe in the centre of Sirmione for a quick cappuccio. I almost indulged in another ice-cream but my inner conscience decided to postpone such delights for another time. Vaguely forgetting that we had a plane to catch, we reflected on our experience of Lake Garda to date.
It had all been most pleasing and still some parts to visit and explore.
Early June is a good time to go if you want the floral beauty of spring, but we surmised that autumn and winter would be equally spectacular and might be even more beautiful, were that possible.
For a seasoned Italy traveller, Lake Garda really did impress me.