Verona is a perfect town to walk in. It is not too big, it is flat and it is full of beautiful things…come for a walk through the lovely streets.
A good place to start is Piazza Erbe with its stunning fountain and beautiful frescoed buildings.
Our next stop was Juliette’s balcony, possibly the worst bit of Verona.
The balcony was built in 1936 to cash in on the story of Romeo and Juliette, a fictional tale. It has become extraordinarily tacky, with walls covered in scrawling signatures. Last time I was in Verona there was actually a wall covered in bits of chewing gum with notes stuck on. There has been some attempt to remove this, but it has not been entirely successful.
Now people push and shove to touch the breast of a statue of poor Juliette in the hope it will bring them luck and possibly romance.
In nearby Piazza dei Signori you can see Dante conjugating a few verbs while he looks down from his high perch. The square was largely covered in scaffolding, so I can’t really show you what it looks like.
From here you can walk through an amazing doorway into the courtyard of Palazzo Tribunale dating from 1365.
There is a spectacular arched entrance on the opposite side.
This building in Piazza dei Signori has an incredible facade.
On the opposite corner is an archway leading to some apartments. I would love one of these balconies.
Near the Piazza dei Signori are the Arche Scaligere, the mausoleums of the Scala family who ruled Verona in the 1200s and 1300s. They are a fine example of Italian Gothic architecture.
Beside this is another gorgeous archway.
A short walk away is a beautiful building…it makes me want to paint the front of my house.
The church of St Anastasia is one of the most beautiful in Italy. It was begun in 1290 and completed in the early 16th century. It is the largest in Verona. The interior is magnificent and I will show you more of that later.
The Verona Cathedral is not far away and almost as fabulous as St Anastasia.
Castelvecchio is a military structure from the 1300s with a bridge crossing the Aldige River.
Moving on…to the amazing arena in Piazza Bra. It was built in the 1st century and once held 30,000 people at a time. Now, because of safety, half that number gather to watch performances. It is one of the best preserved ancient structures of its type.
As you can see Verona is a beautiful city. It also has sophisticated shops and restaurants. It manages to combine the new with the ancient very well.
Don’t miss Verona when you come to Italy. Shakespeare used Verona as a backdrop for 3 of his plays with good reason.