Brescia and its province offer numerous itineraries to explore, starting from the historic centre of the city up to the villages and localities surrounding it, many of which are located on the shores of Lake Garda and Lake Iseo.
Known as the “Lioness of Italy”, Brescia boasts a very eventful historical past, such as its courageous resistance during the famous Ten Days of 1849, which saw the brave citizens against the Austrian oppressors.
For example, not far from Brescia, the Camonica Valley, known internationally for its petroglyphs, and the Franciacorta, known for the rich production of fine wines. The list of places is long and full of landscapes to admire.
Brescia and its historic center
In the historic centre of Brescia, a visit to the Loggia square, which owes its name to the Palazzo della Loggia, built between 1492 and 1570. In addition to the Monti di Pietà and the arcades with the astronomical clock tower, known for the two bronze statues that mark the hours called “i macc de le ure” in the local dialect, the square also boasts the presence of talking statues.
These are sculptures used in past eras to post anonymous messages against the rulers, among which the Lodoiga considered by Brescians, a spokesperson for the people.
The Castle and Roman Brescia
Perched on the Cidneo hill, the Castle of Brescia represents a fortified complex among the largest in Europe. It is the city’s symbol and features the central keep, with the Tower of the Prisoners, the drawbridge, and the Mirabella Tower.
Also, in Brescia, it is possible to visit the so-called Brixia, the Roman archaeological park declared a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, with its Capitoline Temple and Roman theatre. Brescia, whose ancient name is Brixia, was founded by the Cenomani Gauls in the distant 7th century BC.
Cain and the Hermitage of San Giorgio
In the province of Brescia, in the Garza Valley, is the town of Cain. A small village that also represents the starting point for reaching the Hermitage of San Giorgio, located over three hundred meters high. Dating back to the 13th century and probably born as a small Benedictine chapel, the hermitage was recently restored and contained some frescoes executed in 1512, the year that refers to the sack of Brescia by Gastone de Foix and his troops.
The Hermitage of San Giorgio represents a privileged panoramic point to admire the nearby Monte Doppo and Lake Garda.
Sirmione on Lake Garda
Not far from Brescia, on the Brescia side of Lake Garda, is the village that Catullus defined as “the pearl of peninsulas and islands”. We are talking about Sirmione, surrounded by water on three sides and characterized by a historic agglomeration that allows you to admire the lake from a privileged point of view.
In Sirmione, it is possible to visit Scaliger Castle, one of the best preserved defensive structures in Italy, and the famous Grottoes of Catullus, which preserve the ruins of an ancient residence built in Roman times.