The city of Verona - Destination Verona
DISCOVER THE CITY

The city of

Verona

Verona is one of the most famous cities in the world, both for its history and beauty, as well as being the city that symbolises love.

Dante Alighieri also fell in love with the city when he was a guest of the Della Scala family, Lords of Verona, during his various visits between 1303 and 1320.

Every day, tourists from all over the world are entranced by the wonder of the historic centre, declared a World Heritage Site by Unesco. Its wide-ranging and varied architecture hugs the banks of the Adige river, the large squares and the characteristic streets are bustling and full of luxury shops. Verona is also a city of art that offers numerous cultural highlights, including a wide selection of museums to visit and a great number of intriguing shows and entertainment.

A magical city where art, history and culture come together to give you wonderful memories..

Departing from Piazza Bra, the heart of Verona which houses numerous eateries, we find the "Liston"; the current layout of this large space is defined by four centuries of history, apparent in the prestigiously crafted buildings. One example is the beautiful Palazzo degli Honorij, the construction of which dates back to the mid-sixteenth century, designed by the Veronese architect Michele Sanmicheli. There are numerous cafes and restaurants for lunch or a drink on the Liston. Visitors can comfortably sit outside, under the shade of the awnings designed by the famous maestro, Franco Zeffirelli. The location offers the incredible opportunity to admire the splendid Arena di Verona, Palazzo Barbieri - a nineteenth-century building that is now the seat of the Municipality - and the imposing Gran Guardia building from the seventeenth century.

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The Verona Arena, the undisputed emblem of the city (together with Juliet's house), inspires incredible joy and amazement in anyone who glimpses it. A reference point for the world of entertainment, the Arena welcomes thousands of spectators attracted by large events and concerts, such as the Opera Festival. The Roman amphitheatre was constructed with red Verona marble, a stone found in Valpolicella, a splendid hilly area located north-west of Verona. Valpolicella has always been renowned for the richness of its terrain and especially, since Roman times, as a wine-growing region.

Visitors should raise their eyes so as not to lose sight of the wonderful historic buildings when walking along Via Mazzini, which leads to Piazza delle Erbe. Built on the ancient Roman Forum, it is the oldest square in the city; the great variety of styles and history sets the stage for the bustling daily life of Verona's citizens.

The ritual of the aperitif takes place between Palazzo della Ragione, Torre dei Lamberti, the Mazzanti houses, Palazzo Maffei and Domus Mercatorum, the ancient seat of the Guild of Merchants. The marvellous Fountain of Madonna Verona is situated at the centre of the square (the name derives from the contraction of the Latin word mea domina, my lady), the Veronese people are very fond of the monument which also symbolises the city. The statue holds a copper scroll with the following inscription: "EST JUSTI LATRIX URBS HAEC ET LAUDIS AMATRIX”, in English: “it is a city that dispenses justice and loves praise”.

Near Piazza delle Erbe, visitors encounter the Torre dei Lamberti, the tallest lounge in Verona which offers a 360-degree panorama of the entire city. The construction of this 84-metre medieval tower began in the twelfth century and then continued over time. The clock was incorporated into the tower in the eighteenth century.

Juliet's famous house is just stone's throw away from Piazza delle Erbe - the fabled home to the protagonist of what is perhaps Shakespeare's greatest tragedy - a symbolic place of the saddest and best-known love story in the world. An enchanting Gothic-style facade leads to the internal courtyard of the building, where visitors can admire the bronze statue of Juliet and the famous balcony, from which - legend has it - Juliet listened to Romeo declare his love.

Near Piazza delle Erbe, visitors can also explore the Arche Scaligere, a Gothic funerary complex dedicated to the important Della Scala family which reigned in Verona for one hundred and twenty-five years, from 1262 to 1387.

The imposing Castelvecchio, a medieval castle built in the fourteenth century, towers over the banks of the Adige river. Castelvecchio imparts a fairytale-feel to Verona and is one of the city's Civic Museums, an interesting place to visit and admire.

Continuing along the Adige river, the Roman Theatre is situated at the foot of Colle San Pietro. The ancient theatre dating back to the 1st century B.C. was recovered during the second half of the nineteenth century and now sets the stage for the Shakespearean Festival every summer.

Castel San Pietro, situated on the hill of the same name, can be reached by a funicular railway that lets visitors enjoy an incredible view of the city. After several vicissitudes, the Castle was transformed into a military barracks in the nineteenth century.

Leaving the centre of Verona behind, visitors will reach the Basilica of San Zeno, a church dedicated to the past Bishop of Verona. The Basilica is one of the most incredible examples of Romanesque architecture. Famous for housing the body of St. Zeno, the interior of the church features a rich array of art, paintings, and sculptures. The best-known example is the San Zeno Altarpiece by Andrea Mantegna, representing the first “sacred conversation”, with the Madonna and Child in the centre.

Over the centuries, an important defensive wall system was built in Verona to guard against enemies and conquerors, consisting of walls, towers, gates, and forts. From the centre of Verona, visitors can take a guided tour to admire and trace the remains of the Roman walls and the intact Della Scala walls characterised by battlements and towers that have survived the ravages of time. Some of the walls of Gallienus were incorporated into the buildings instead.

In addition to the view, the city of Verona is also able to satisfy its visitors' senses of smell and taste. In fact, the Verona area is famous for its wines and gastronomic specialities. Numerous bars within the city offer excellent wines from Valpolicella, Soave, Valdadige, Garda, and Custoza. Visitors can then go to an osteria to taste the typical dishes of the Veronese tradition, such as boiled meat with Pearà sauce, Tastasal (pork mince) risotto or tortellini from Valeggio.

 

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