ITALYHEAVEN.CO.UK: ITALY TOURISM & TRAVEL GUIDE
Images of Italy
Italy home Accommodation Airports Travel & transport Italy map Planning a trip Language Tours & packages Discover Italy
Destinations: Where to go in Italy & what to do there Holiday ideas: Itineraries, seaside resorts, islands, the best hotels ... Special interest: Activities, spas, art, cruises, events ...

Rome Venice Florence Sicily Amalfi Coast Italian Lakes Cinque Terre Tuscany Milan Verona Sorrento Puglia Sardinia More places


Verona by night; with the Roman Arena




San Matteo Church, Verona


Verona

Verona

Verona, in the Veneto region of north-east Italy, is one of Italy's loveliest towns, famous for its summer opera season. This has been a thriving and successful town for most of its history, and today smart shops and cafes fill the attractive medieval lanes of the historic centre. Verona is a popular day-trip from Lake Garda, and an appealing destination for weekend breaks or longer stays. There's a lot to see here, from Roman ruins to the so-called 'Juliet's balcony', and the town is also well-connected for exploring the surrounding area, including destinations like Lake Garda, Vicenza, Padua and Venice.

Verona was an important Roman town and is rich in archaeological sites, the grandest of which is the Roman Arena, where operas are now performed in the summer. It's easy to spend a long time simply exploring the narrow streets lined with handsome palazzi that make up the historic centre. The town's museums and churches contain fine works of art, while the ruined Roman theatre over the river has excellent views from the terraces where the ancients watched plays.

If you're planning a longer stay, or want to see more of Italy, Verona is usefully located for travel to Venice or to lovely Lake Garda. There is a lot to see in this part of Italy, and it is easy to travel around by public transport. Combining Verona with another local destination (perhaps the lake) would make a great and varied two-centre holiday.


Things to see

Verona's historic centre (centro storico) lies within the town walls in a tight curve of the Adige river. Entering town past the Porta Nuova gateway near the railway station, you head along wide car-filled Corso Porta Nuova before passing through the attractive fourteenth-century arches of the Portoni della Brà and entering the historic part of town. Immediately inside the town wall is Piazza Brà, a large open space dominated by the imposing Roman Arena. Verona's tourist information office is nearby, set in the old town wall to the right. Via Mazzini, an elegant pedestrian street paved with shiny Verona marble, heads straight through the heart of town to Piazza Erbe, Verona's most attractive square. It's a good idea to have a map or guidebook at this point, and to dive into the pretty historic lanes uncovering Verona's charms.
> More about Verona tourist attractions and sightseeing


Balcony, Verona

The Romeo and Juliet trail

Shakespeare is extremely unlikely ever to have set foot in Verona. However, his source for the plot of Romeo and Juliet was derived at several removes from an Italian story set in the town, featuring two feuding families with names similar to those of historical Veronese dynasties. So there is a connection, but whether you wish to feel that the real town of Verona has any direct link to Shakespeare's work is up to you. It doesn't stop the town from marketing Romeo and Juliet postcards, mugs, tea-towels, sliding pens and more. There is a busy Shakespearian tourist trail, and (mind-bogglingly) you can post a letter to fictional dead character Juliet at 'Juliet's tomb', or email her at 'Juliet's balcony'. The city organises various 'romantic' initiatives, including events around Valentine's Day.


Travel to Verona

Verona is very easy to reach from other parts of Italy and Europe. It's on a major railway line - with trains travelling as far as Paris - and the town has an international airport very close by, and several other airports within a couple of hours travel .
> Read about Verona Airport and transport links to and within the town


Eating and drinking

Osteria, Verona

Verona's two main hubs for sitting down with a drink or a light meal are Piazza Brà and Piazza Erbe. Of the two, Piazza Erbe has a much nicer atmosphere and you'll find lots of locals at the appealing but somewhat pricey bars lining the square. Piazza Brà is more of a thoroughfare where you'll pay a lot for a rather touristy experience. However, if you're in a hurry or on a budget you'll find two useful eating places here - speedy self-service restaurant Brek and the Italian fast food chain Spizzico.

For cheaper or more atmospheric meals, try wandering through the small lanes of the centro storico. Small restaurants and bars are scattered secretively through the centre - try spotting them at lunchtime when busy crowds of locals will indicate the best food.


Restaurants

For a charming and authentic feel, join local workers in the cosy little Osteria Al Duomo (Via Duomo, 7; closed Thursdays, summer Sundays), where you can eat good local dishes and enjoy wine from €1.50 a glass. Another spot for an atmospheric meal is Piazza Erbe, the attractive market square. Along one side of the piazza is a row of cafe-bar-restaurants where you can sit at outside tables and enjoy a light meal or drinks. These establishments aren't very cheap, but their tables occupy prime positions; it's a lovely spot to sit on a sunny day and watch Verona go by.

I enjoyed the hearty Tirolean-influenced food at Ristorante Tabià (Via Zambelli 14; closed Mondays), a cheerful restaurant with a large, rustic-style interior, good prices and incredibly fattening dishes. Another spot for a cheap and filling meal is the Ristorante-Pizzeria San Matteo Church (Vicolo del Guasto, close to Porta Borsari), which, as its name indicates, is actually located in a former church. There are memorial tablets on the wall, a crypt displayed through glass floor panels, and dinner tables where the high altar would have stood. Locals come here in their lunch hour for a quick self-service meal, but there is also waiter service with a long and varied pizza menu.

Verona by night

Other good restaurants include the Ristorante Sant'Eufemia (Via Emilei 21), close to the church of the same name. There's a misleadingly offputting multilingual menu outside but inside the restaurant is like the ground floor of a 19th-century mansion - you sit on fine old chairs - with a serious and secretive air, attentive service and good meals (including house wine) at a modest cost. For a cheap fixed-price lunch in a family restaurant, you could try the Trattoria alla Pergola, by the Ponte Garibaldi very close to the Duomo.


Verona accommodation

Verona has some good central hotels, but it's not a cheap place to stay and it is worth booking in advance. My Verona hotel selection includes an excellent, reliable four-star, some budget options and one or two really special, romantic places to stay.
> See a selection of the best places to stay in Verona



On this site

Hotel Accademia - hotel review

Grand Hotel Verona - hotel review

Venice

Lake Garda

Brescia

Trains in Italy




Useful external links

Verona hotels (Booking)

Verona hotels, B&Bs & apartments (Venere)

Verona Card

Verona Airport

Verona Arena

San Matteo Church Restaurant

Ristorante Sant'Eufemia

Italy car hire




Advertising
Advertising
Read Blog
Italy Heaven © Copyright Tourist Heaven Limited
This site provides tourist and visitor information for Italy, from Piemonte to Sicily. Designed for travellers from around the world who want to plan a trip, take a holiday, book accommodation in Italy, or just learn more about the country: its geography, art, football, culture and entertainment options.