Veneto Region - Peschiera del Garda
After Milan we travel to Lake Garda and will stay at the town of Peschiera del Garda.
Lake Garda’s touches three Italian provinces: Verona with its towns Peschiera del Garda, Castelnuovo del Garda, Lazise, Bardolino, Garda, Torri del Benaco, Brenzone and Malcesine, Brescia in the municipal districts of Lonato, Sirmione, Desenzano del Garda, Padenghe del Garda, Moniga del Garda, San Felice del Benaco, Manerba del Garda, Salò, Toscolano-Maderno, Gardone Riviera, Gargnano, Tignale, Tremosine and Limone sul Garda as well as Trento with Riva del Garda and Nago-Torbole. A daily ferryboat service connects all these places, so that they become easily reachable by water way too.
This is no secret hide-away. Evidently there are huge campsites almost the size of the city on both sides of town and numerous smaller villagios, hotels and hostels. There is a large theme park, Gardaland, just outside the town.
Four small islands turned the old centre of town into a fortress that has played a prominent part in most military campaigns conducted in northern Italy after 1400. Belonging to the Ezzelini, Scaglieri and Visconti families in Medieval times, in the 15th century the city succeeded to the Venetian Republic.
During the Venetian period that the fortress and defensive city walls were built. They are still preserved today.
Peschiera del Garda is a resort town at the southern tip of Lake Garda. Although a resort town, there is a good feel os history here. The 16th-century Porta Verona is one of the gateways through the old city walls that ring the historic center. The Palazzina Storica Museum houses frescoes and WWI objects.
The town is encircled by massive Venetian defensive systems that are a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 9 July 2017.
When Lombardy-Venetia was under Austrian rule, Peschiera was the northwest anchor of the four fortified towns constituting the Quadrilatero. The defensive system of the Austrian Empire in the Lombardy-Venetia region of Italy, which connected the fortresses of Peschiera, Mantua, Legnago and Verona between the Mincio, the Po and Adige Rivers. The name refers to the fact that on a map the fortresses appear to form the vertices of a quadrilateral.
In the Palazzina Storica Museo is the room where King Vittorio Emanuele III made his famous address to the Italian people after the disasterous battle of Caporetto urging them to keep on fighting.
The museum is only open on Saturdays. It is dedicated to all things to the sea and reiver. There are old fishing boards, tools and othe exhibitions about a fisherman's life.
Chiesa Parrocchiale di San Martino Vescovo is a well preserved church located close to the Mincio’s canals. Although not very large in size, thee are statues, altars and the stunning ceiling paintings and stained glass decorations.
This building housed prisoners and used to be a military hospital. There are tours, available from the Tourism Peschiera Info point. The tour takes about 80 minutes and involves going up and down some flights of stairs. In parts, it’s dark and torchlight is needed, which brings a creepy sort of feeling.
A few kilometers away is the peninsula with the walled town of Sirmione. We have not been back there for a number of years. It is a ten minute bus ride, take Ln026. Or, I think it will be best to take the boat. It is a 40 minute boat ride.
In Peschiera del Garda we will be staying at the Riviera Carducci Rooms
The Santuario dates back to 1510 when thew Madonna appeared to the peasant Barolomeo Broglia in Contrada Pigna outside the walls of Peschiera del Garda. While working in the fields, Barolomeo was attacked by a snake. He called on the aid of the Virgin and he saw the image of the Mother of God some to his aid.
The sanctuary of Santuario della Madonna del Frassino houses a little statue of the Madonna del Frassino, which miraculously appeared in 1510 between the branches of an ash tree. Since then, it has been preserved by the Franciscan monks who offer blessings and information about the story behind the statue.
It is located across the Mincio River and considered one of the greatest monuments in the area. The chapel for confessions (Penitenziaria) and the two cloisters called "Dei pesci" and "Degli uccelli" are worthy of been seen. Water birds inhabit the nearby Lago del Frassino nature reserve. The Sanctuary is open from 7 to noon, and then 3 to 7:30.
The walls were designed by famous architects of the time. You can walk along the walls and enjoy views across Lake Garda.
Porta Verona, the Lion of San Marco Returns, is a 16th-century monumental entrance of Peschiera del Garda. Whoever passes through does not escape the empty space in the center of the door, where the Lion of San Marco was set, destroyed by Napoleon's troops. Work on the restoration of the port, to include the facde the Leone Marciano. It appears the work starts in 2020 - I hope, not in 2019. We will see then we get there. Venice used to be the centre of the Republic and there were numerous fortications throughout the region. Peschiera del Garda is one of them.
Porta Verona was one of the two gates through the fortifications that were built (Porta Verona and Porta Brescia). With the Treaty of Campoformio in 1797 Peschiera del Garda came under the rule of the Austrian Empire and the city became one of the four forts to form the framous square that joins Legnago, Mantura and Verona.