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Things to do in Verona
There are many things to do in Verona or in the nearby areas. Located between Milano and Venice, and 30 minutes from the Garda Lake, it is strategic base of operations for tourism. I will list five main options, concentrated in the city area.
Arena di Verona and Piazza Bra
This iconic landmark of the city is in the central Bra square, and it is a well preserved roman amphitheater. It hosts nowadays shows (e.g. opera, concerts) giving a unique experience. The arena is also open to regular visits.
Piazza Bra is the central square nearby the Arena and the largest square of the city. The square is characterized by a large amount of historic buildings (like palazzo Beriberi), public amenities and lots of bars and restaurants where you can eat or drink facing the Arena.
Basilica di San Zeno
The Basilica of San Zeno is not only a stunning example of Romanic architecture. It is one of the main churches in Verona, and the fictional place where the marriage of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet was celebrated.
You can admire the beautiful rose window on the facade, and the bronze ornate wooden door. Inside the Basilica – that can be visited with a small fee – are the relics of Saint Zeno, protector of the city, and its simply but beautiful architecture: the marble columns holding the arches and the elaborate tile work of the ceiling.
Inside the church there is a beautiful cloister.
Piazza delle Erbe and Lamberti tower
Piazza delle Erbe is a beautiful square in the city center of Verona. It hosts several restaurant and historical palaces. During the Christmas time it also hosts a very cozy and traditional Christmas market.
The Torre dei Lamberti, located nearby the square, is the tallest building in Verona.
Its construction started in the 12th century towards the 15th century. You can notice the different time periods and the sequence of enlargements when looking at the tower.
The tower’s top is open for visits, and it offers a unique view of Verona from a different perspective.
We cannot forget how Verona is famous as the scene of several plays from William Shakespeare. In particular, of the epic and tragic Romeo and Juliet play.
The Casa di Giulietta and its balcony are supposed to be the set of the famous dialogue between Romeo and Juliet (when she speaks to him from the balcony).
Many lovers come here to pay their respects to this symbol of love. A picture near the statue of Juliet (touching her… on her breasts!) is a must do in the city.
Food and wine experience
We cannot be in Italy without mentioning the local food and wine experience!
Verona has a historic farm tradition of farms. As a result, there are many meat dishes including horse and donkey (patissada de caval, an horse stew, or the traditional, home made, spaghetti-like bigoli, with duck or donkey meat sauce). Following the veneto tradition, I recommend the Osteria il Ciottolo among other restaurants.
The Verona surroundings (in particular the Valpolicella) are famous for their wines. The prosecco, sparkling white, and the red, full-bodied Amarone, are landmark of this region. I recommend to visit some producers in the area, if you find the time. But there are very beautiful osterie where to try the local product.
Antica bottega del vino, in the city center, is a perfect example of this concept.