An evocative Medieval castle, floodlit at night, overlooks the town of Avio. Surrounded by the hills of the left bank of the river Adige, the Castle of Sabbionara d'Avio has dominated for centuries the lower Val Lagarina, one of the principal historic routes of communication between the Mediterranean South and Northern Europe.
It is a vast complex featuring an 11th century keep, five towers, the baron's residence and the 13th century walls. The castle is first mentioned, at the Age of the Longobards, as the home of the newly-wed King Authari and Theodolinda.
The prominent feature of the castle is the trapezoidal keep with its rounded corners, which hosts the Stanza d'Amore - the Room of Love - decorated with frescoes painted in the courtly style.
Next to what remains of the baron's residence is a tower, the Torre della Picadora, which has been transformed into residential unit, and the Casa delle guardie, the guards' quarters, which features an extraordinary cycle of 14th century frescoes depicting military subjects.
A stone-paved path through the vineyards leads to the Romanesque gateway of the upper castle, which no longer features the fourth internal quarter. Famous guests of the castle include the Holy Roman Emperors Charles V and Maximilian of Hapsburg.