Sanctuaries, Monasteries and Hermitages on the Lake Garda
Lake Garda and its beautiful surroundings offer many opportunities to visit religious places such as sanctuaries, monasteries and hermitages.
For anyone who has a religious faith, is interested in visiting sacred places rich in spirituality, or simply wants to discover architectural jewels that blend perfectly with the surrounding landscape, we offer a list of the most fascinating and popular Marian shrines, hermitages and monasteries on the lake di Garda which can be reached by walking, cycling or by car.
Sanctuaries on Lake Garda
Sanctuary of the Madonna della Corona
The Sanctuary Basilica of the Madonna della Corona is a special place to visit and explore and is probably the most famous of the sanctuaries on Lake Garda. It is a proof of the great spirit that animates the people who live near Lake Garda since building and maintaining a shrine halfway up a steep rock face is a sign of devotion that nowadays can rarely be found anywhere else.
The Sanctuary of the Madonna della Corona is located in Caprino Veronese, a few kilometers from Verona. It rises 774 meters above sea level, clinging to the rocks that surround it as if it were dug into the walls of the mountain that guards it, surrounded by abundant vegetation.
Today it is an important pilgrimage destination for both devotees and trekking enthusiasts, who have the opportunity to reach this monastery on Lake Garda with a footpath known as the Sentiero dei Pellegrini, which starts from the village of Brentino and reaches the Sanctuary of the Madonna della Corona.
Sanctuary of the Madonna del Frassino in Peschiera del Garda
The Marian sanctuaries of Lake Garda are a place where devotion and art blend perfectly. The church Sanctuary of the Madonna del Frassino is an example of this, given that it preserves valuable works of art and various frescoes that can be admired together with the large cloister, adjacent to the Franciscan convent, which houses the ex votos of those to whom the Virgin Mary granted graces.
The name of the sanctuary is linked to an apparition of the Madonna who appeared in response to a farmer's request for help by chasing away a snake and thus giving rise to the place of worship and pilgrimage we know today.
The Sanctuary of the Madonna del Frassino is easily reached by taking the Gardesana road from Peschiera del Garda and heading inland following Via Frassino.
Sanctuary of the Madonna of Montecastello
The Sanctuary of Montecastello in Tignale stands high above Lake Garda and offers a spectacular view of the lake and Monte Baldo. It is a sanctuary dedicated to the Madonna della Stella. Tradition has it that the miraculous appearance of a star was what brought about the end of a bloody battle between the inhabitants of the cities of Brescia and Trento.
This monastery overlooking Lake Garda offers breathtaking views and the church is worth a visit for the exquisitely crafted frescoes, one of which is attributed to Giotto's pupils.
This sanctuary dedicated to the Madonna can be reached with a short walk from the parking lot located along the provincial road 38, on the western shore of the lake.
Sanctuary of Carmine in San Felice del Benaco
One of the most beautiful sanctuaries on Lake Garda celebrated its jubilee in 2015. Its creation dates back to the construction of a small chapel in 1542 dedicated to the Madonna delle Cisterne, as thanksgiving for the abundance of water found in these parts.
This sanctuary was built by the Carmelite friars but was abandoned in 1770. The complex was only reopened to visitors in 1952 when the present convent was built.
The Sanctuary of Carmine can be reached starting from Sirmione, along the provincial road 572, towards Salò and then turning towards San Felice del Benaco.
Hermitages on Lake Garda
Lake Garda boasts a particular geography, which seems to descend like a drop from the Alps and spread out over the Po Valley surrounded by luxuriant vegetation, which over the centuries has allowed the birth of a large number of places of refuge to be dedicated to meditation and contemplation.
Hermitages on Lake Garda are places where man is in perfect balance with the surrounding nature, respecting the quiet and allowing one to experience a moment of profound intimacy and connection with the sacred dimension of life.
Hermitage of San Giorgio
The Hermitage of San Giorgio, also known as the Hermitage of the Camaldolesi del Garda, is an ancient monastery which stands in a very panoramic position on the homonymous promontory which dominates the eastern coast of Lake Garda from a height of 300 metres.
Up until 1532, the small church of San Giorgio stood at this point. The Camaldolese monks have settled there since 1665 and still today they take care of this hermitage on Lake Garda.
The Camaldolese friars of Garda welcome visitors with great cordiality and warmth, who can attend masses and religious functions, that are celebrated regularly.
Hermitage of San Paolo in Arco di Trento
The Hermitage of San Paolo located in Arco di Trento is one of the oldest hermitages in Trentino and Lake Garda. It is a building with rather simple features which bear witness to the modesty of the hermitages that once occupied this place.
The beauty of this hermitage is given by the fact that it is dug under a rock in a kind of cave or natural roof. Other highlights are the altar which dates back to 1186, the frescoes depicting the Last Supper and the life of St. Paul, the terrace and the external stone staircase.
A curiosity: in Arco there is also the Arx Vivendi Monastery, an ancient Garda monastery dating back to the 17th century, now converted into a luxury hotel and spa.
Hermitage of San Colombano
A Hermitage of Garda that is definitely worth visiting is the Hermitage of San Colombano located in Trambileno, in the province of Trento.
To get there you have to take a path in the woods after which the spectacular view opens up on this hermitage located overlooking the river Leno. The hermitage is clinging to the rock face and a part of the building is made up of bare rock.
Even the 102 steps leading up to the entrance to the hermitage are carved into the rock. Legend has it that a dragon once lived here which terrorized the local population until San Colombano confronted and defeated him.
If after the efforts of the paths and climbs to reach the Sanctuaries and Hermitages we have told you about, you would like to to relax with our Lake Garda Boat Trips, all you have to do is contact us using the references you find at the top of the site or with the Contacts button that you find below.