Verona is one of my favourite towns in Italy - its maze of sun-drenched streets is charming, the myriad colours of the buildings captivating and the story of its history can be seen on its walls, its streets, buildings and statues. Three of Shakespeare's plays are set in Verona - the most famous, of course, being Romeo and Juliet.
No wonder, then, that thousands of tourists flock here every year - visiting Juliet's balcony, rubbing her bronze statue in the courtyard for luck in love and leaving love notes in the walls of the entryway.
Beyond Juliet's house, however, there are many other enjoyable activities to do in Verona:
- Visit the stunning Arena di Verona - in ancient times the amphitheater was the site of gladiator battles held in front of crowds of 30,000 people. It is currently open for daytime tours and evening musical spectacles, including operas, ballets and other musical performances.
- Sit in quiet reflection at one of many sacred buildings, such as the Basilica di San Zeno Maggiore or the Duomo Santa Maria Matricolare.
- Wander the stunning gardens at Giardino Giusti.
- View ancient weaponry, statues, sculptures and more at the Museo del Castelvecchio - located in a restored palace.
- Shop at the outdoor market in Piazza Erbe or window shop at the numerous luxury shops.
- Drink coffee or enjoy a good meal at one of the many cafes and restaurants. For the best food and prices, always wander the side streets and look for a place where the locals gather.
- Hike the nearby hills to get epic views of the city of Verona, a UNESCO World Heritage site.
I've always found the best way to visit a new city is to first visit the main tourist attractions and then to simply wander and discover the hidden gems. Verona has many treasures - all waiting to be discovered.