Verona – A city break full of music, history and architecture
Have you ever been to Verona or just thinking about traveling to? No? Then this is the moment when you should put the city with a 2000 years old history situated in the north of Italy – famous for the Arena and Romeo & Juliet – on your bucket list.
A coincidence and concert tickets brought me back for a 48h weekend break. Finally the trip was cut down to 42h due to the industrial action of the Italian air traffic control which was not the best start. At least we made it on time – thanks to the late beginning – to the concert at Teatro Romano located just across the beautiful Ponte Pietra. The history of Roman theatre lasts back to 20 BC. The view from the upper stone rows to the historic center, sitting under the sky full of stars, having a cold beer and the voice of Jack Savoretti made the Friday night unforgettable.
After the end of the concert right before midnight we were heading back when I realized I never get tired of the Roman architecture and the small alleys lit by the street lights. What would be more perfect to finish the night having a drink and people watching surrounded by the magnificent buildings Piazza delle Erbe?
On the next day the sun was out and a day full of sightseeing was waiting for us. But first it was breakfast time. Sitting at Piazza Bra, enjoying the view to the Arena di Verona and watching the hustle and bustle we started into our day. A stroll down the main shopping street ended at one of the most famous balconies. Juliets balcony situated in a courtyard is full of tour groups most of the time and as well as Shakespeares “Romeo&Juliet” a fiction.
Juliets house was belonging the Capello family for long years and long years ago the Veronese tourism board established the story they were the Capulets in Shakespeares play to decrease the number of tourists. The interesting background story – which most people even don’t know – is the balcony was added to the house in the 1930s and is a former sarcophagus. If you compare the balcony with the other balconies and the Scaliger Toms just behind the Piazza del Signori you will realize the story is true.
A short photo break at the courtyard Mercato Vecchio was my must do. The quiet place close to the hustle and bustle of the Piazza delle Erbe invites the few people who come around with beautiful architecture and two restaurants. For me this is a place I always will come back when I am in town.
Our way through the small streets and alleys brought us back to the Ponte Pietra from where we could admire the beautiful colored houses built next to the Aetsch during day time. From here we started our way up to the view-point in front of the Castel San Pietro. Overlooking the historic center and more further it was time for another break to enjoy the view. Communicating with a local by hands and feet he tried to explain us the history of Verona and the difference of life in Italy is for tourists and for locals as well as he told us about the history of Verona.
After our break we decided it is time to head back toward the Piazza Bra to pay the Arena di Verona a visit. We came across the Duomo and more historical buildings and found the Arena di Verona less crowded than in the morning hours. But before we started exploring the second biggest amphitheater we needed to refuel with snacks and drinks while watching the happening around us. The Arena during day time seemed to be bigger than I have in my mind from my first visit years ago when friends and I were watching Nabucco. What a wonderful and impressive ancient architecture almost 2000 years old!
Time for freshen up and get ready for dinners. The menu of the Enotecas around the center offer delicious meals and delicious Italian wines for good prices. If you try one of the restaurants in the small streets where the locals eat and you can’t go wrong to find lovely food in typical Italian atmosphere. Like during the daytime the bars and restaurants at Piazza Bra and Piazza delle Erbe are also crowded after the sun sets and are one more time our perfect locations for a Limoncello or Grappa as a nightcap to finish a great day full of impressions and La Dolce Vita in Bella Italia.