Verona: An overview - Part 1 - Orlando / Florida Guide
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Verona means one thing to most people and that is Romeo and Juliet, but there is so much more to this city.
The urban setting for William Shakespeare’s tragic star crossed lovers, Vstar-crossedng been a place of pilgrimage for couples seeking romance. 2016 marked 400 years since the Bard’s death, there where extra efforts made to improve the area for all the events. Though people flock here for Verona’s links with Romeo and Juliet, there’s plenty more to fall in love with. The ‘Door of Italy’, as it’s known, is usually the first city those entering the country from the north encounter. It has a wealth of Roman ruins and rich architecture which ensure it doesn’t lack appeal.
Getting there is fairly simple and takes from two hours, departing from Manchester, Southampton and London Gatwick. Its city centre is walkable, but also has an extensive public bus network stretching into the wider district. Single city centre tickets can be bought in advance from bus stations, tobacconists and newsagents for €1. 30 and provide unlimited travel within 90 minutes. Tickets bought on board both cost more €2 and are only valid for one journey. A 48-hour Verona Card costs €22 and offers unlimited travel as well as free entry and discounts to numerous attractions.
No one’s sure whether Shakespeare ever visited Verona, but its dramatic reputation certainly left a mark on him over 400 years ago. Second only to Rome for ruins, the jewel in the city’s crown is its 1st-century amphitheatre. The pink hued Verona Arena is the third largest in Italy and tours cost €10. It is still largely intact and hosts a popular annual opera festival in late summer. Despite Romeo and Juliet’s fictitious origins, many sites claim to have inspired its author.
The 14th-century Casa di Giulietta (Juliet’s House) is pretty but overcrowded, while its balcony was tacked on in the 1930s. Her ‘final resting place’ (Tomba di Giulietta) however is rather atmospheric, located below the old convent of San Francesco al Corso. The Basilica di San Zeno also claims to have been ‘the setting’ for the lovers’ wedding, and is especially impressive. However try to make time to look beyond the Bard’s legacy.
The charming Piazza delle Erbe is a fruit and vegetable market with its group of sun umbrellas, surrounded by historic buildings and monuments. It’s the principal characteristic of the most ancient square in Verona where the medieval buildings took place of the Romans ones step by step. Here you can see the most popular and energetic side of the city, even if you won’t forget the cultural side of your holiday.
The city even squeezes in the Romanesque Verona Cathedral and a number of enchanted churches.
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