Explore Verona with Elegant Resorts
Verona is, perhaps, one of the lesser-known cities in the north of Italy, but boasts a great deal of charm and history, and would be a fabulous option for a romantic weekend away or as a base from which to visit an interesting array of nearby cities during a longer holiday, including Venice, Milan and Vicenza, along with the magnificent Lake Garda, which is very close by. Almost entirely surrounded by walls dating back to the sixteenth century and sliced in half by the snake-like River Adige, Verona is awash with fabulous Renaissance architecture, while its centrepiece monument, the first century Arena di Verona, is an incredibly well-preserved Roman amphitheatre that dominates the spacious, cobbled Piazza Bra (which is also home to The Liston, a collection of super restaurants and bars). Each summer, the city hosts a world-famous opera festival that utilises the Arena di Verona as a spectacular open-air venue - an event not to be missed - while at other times of the year, it is used for rock and pop concerts. The compact nature of the city means that it is easily walkable, allowing visitors to experience a great many of its cultural riches within a relatively small area, including a number of Romanesque and Gothic churches, the riverside Castelvecchi, built on the site of a Roman fortress between 1354 and 1376 and now home to the Verona's fine art museum, and the stunning Renaissance gardens known as Giardino Giusti. Of course, visitors familiar with Shakespeare's adapted tale, Romeo and Juliet, will recognise the city as the setting for the book and a favourite attraction is the fourteenth century Casa di Giulietta on Via Cappello, which is set in a courtyard and boasts an ornate balcony. Despite it not being the actual residence of the Capulet family portrayed in the story, this restored property remains a mecca for tourists and has a small statue of Juliet beneath the balcony in the courtyard. By complete contrast, Verona is an excellent place in which to enjoy a spot of shopping, with designer labels and lingerie shops aplenty along the pedestrianised Via Mazzini, along with a wealth of bookshops and wine bars, while Corsa Porta Borsa is the sacred road to the city and boasts a third century gate and Renaissance palazzi. Here, you'll find shops, gourmet restaurants, bars and cafes.