25 Aug 2016

The Streets of Verona

Another place on top of the to-do list when in Italy last week was to visit Verona. Just a stones throw from peace and tranquility within the Italian countryside appears one of the countries most famous cities. We flew to and from Verona airport and it's amazing how little time it takes to get there from Lake Garda (just 14 minutes by train). Hallmarked by Shakespeare as a city of love and anguish in the setting of Romeo and Juliet, each year tourists flock to Verona to take in the sights and atmosphere of this beautiful place and I can see why. 

Verona has everything you could want of an Italian city; an amphitheater to wander round, piazza's, Roman ruins and charming cobbled streets. It is a lot more compact compared to cities like Rome and although you may get lost occasionally, it's not long until you get your bearings (although all the beautiful streets look pretty much identical..). We took a train from Peschiera del Garda (which cost just under 4 euros each way) and arrived in Verona's Porto Nuova station. From there, a five minute bus journey gets you into the centre of the city (for 2 euros each way). We stopped just outside the amphitheater which is still very much in use and would be a lovely way to spend an evening in the city. It is currently Opera season (until end of August) and looking at the website makes me wish we'd known this in advance (http://www.arena.it/arena/en). 

Piazza delle Erbe is somewhere we stumbled across and happened to be one of Verona's prettiest spots for a re-fuel and people-watching when you are starting to lag from exploring. I definitely succeeded in filling up my camera roll with photo after photo of the beautiful Italian buildings that line the streets of the city and are especially apparent in this square.  

After a much-needed Aperol spritz in the square, we headed for Verona's arguably most famous spot in the city for a dose of culture. The renound Casa di Giulietta (House of Juliet) is unfortunately but expectantly riddled with tourists at most times of the day. and is found right in the centre (a two minute walk from Piazza delle Erbe). A very small courtyard just off the main street houses the ever-famous balcony that so many have romanticized about. If you can get a photo without an awkwardly-posed tourist spoiling the view, you've done well and if you were staying in the city for more than a day, an early trip to this spot would make it a lot more special. Tours inside the house are quite expensive and looked uncomfortably busy; we were more than happy to simply take in the view from the ground like most others were. The courtyard is also famous for it's graffiti-ed walls - and if you've seen Letters to Juliet, visiting this place really brings the film to life and it is pretty amazing that letters are still written and posted here by people from all around the world. 

The restaurants definitely get quieter and more appealing as you head out of Verona's centre and toward the river. Walking along the riverbank at dusk is an especially tranquil way to spend your last hours in the city, not forgetting a customary two-scoop gelato to fill in the gaps after a carb-overload (When in Rome and all that..). Our day in Verona was ended with an unexpected stroll home in a thunderstorm (the weather was very temperamental during our stay and often it was much sunnier back home); rain is definitely one way to clear the streets of a bustling city in the height of summer.

Flights to Verona are relatively cheap all-year round (we found return flights with a budget air-line for under £100 return during the peak of summer from London Stansted). Beautiful sights, culture, history and food, what more could you want.

All ph. taken by myself on iPhone 6s.

1 comment

  1. I love this post, I'm glad you fell as much in love with Verona as I did! I recently visited in April, my blog post is here if you fancy a read: wp.me/p7MohU-fC

    P.s your photography is great, I need to use my iPhone camera more!
    Shannice x


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