Where is the most romantic city in Italy? Some would say Rome, others claim cupid to live among the canals of Venice and then there are fans of Capri. Each one of these glorious landmark sites have their respective place in our hearts, but we can never forget where unrequited, powerful love was not only recorded but staged for hundreds of years. We spent 24 hours in Verona and found that there is much more to love beyond a solemn balcony filled with stolen kisses. Verona is all about modern love with historic flavor.
Breakfast in Verona
El Cuciar in Piazza Duomo 6A, is the perfect spot to welcome the morning with a cup of coffee and light breakfast of fresh orange juice and a croissant while you admire the Cathedral of Santa Maria Matricolare, watching as the sun’s early rays touch this historic monument and gradually light up the dark corners of the square.
If you like a rich breakfast head to Elk Bakery in Via IV Novembre, 1A. Infused with a Brooklyn-meets-Copenhagen kind of spirit, this place stands out in Verona for its ultra-local’s address, hipster design and international breakfast dishes from eggs benedict to NY-style bagels, as well as vegan and vegetarian dishes. Great spot for weekend brunches.
The City Setting of Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet Main Attractions
A wander through the streets that were the backdrop for Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet will get you acquainted with the artistic, architectural and cultural history of Verona. What’s more, the city is of an ideal size to be best explored by foot. Verona is a city with two thousand years of history, so is undoubtedly a place full of characteristic sites that are worth visiting at any time of the year. The ideal starting point can only be the very central Piazza Bra, the heart of Verona life since Roman times. Here you can admire the ancient walls of the town’s Roman Arena, home to one of the most famous opera festivals in Europe. The other many monuments of the city can be reached with a pleasant walk that will leave you speechless at every step.
A visit to Verona cannot be said to be complete without having a look at Juliet’s balcony, immortalized by the pen of William Shakespeare. Take pictures of Juliet’s balcony and according to the tradition rub the shining breast on her bronze statue for good luck!
Lunch at Osteria Caffe Monte Baldo
Osteria Caffe Monte Baldo in Via Rosa 12, has been around since 1909 and is one of those places that will have you smiling while you sip your glass of wine, watching the locals gather for wine o’clock, waitresses ushering out platters of fresh Veronese tapas, and historic interiors so prominent it must mean passionately ‘Made in Italy’. Order a glass of Veronese ‘Lugana’ (white wine) or prosecco from Franciacorta, alongside a selection of 12 tapas from all combinations and live the moment. The pace out front is relaxed and happening, the place to be, while other diners may opt for a lunchindoors at the osteria.
Afternoon Shopping at Corso S. Anastasia
Corso Quindici in Corso S. Anastasia 15A
It is impossible to pass the window display and not notice the particular selection of items set at the window, a mix between Italian sophistication and French Riviera chic. Ensembles of lovely dresses with distinct accessories, weekend wear for men highlighted by the perfect pair of jeans and a sophisticated jacket. There is something different about the home-curated collection at CorsoQuindici, not what you would expect to see or much less find, not even in Milan. The interiors are equally impressive with artwork and furniture selected by the owner Maurizio, who ‘got it’ as far as exceptional taste goes. The first floor of this fashion atelier is dedicated to the men’s collection and accessories; upstairs is the women’s collection with items that will have you biting your lip with intrigue. Items here are worth the investment.
Momonì Boutique in Corso S. Anastasia 10
Born in 2009 with a pair of well-made culottes that took Italian market by storm, Momonì understood the importance of using soft, pleasant fabric to the everyday garment, rendering it a kind of jewel or accessory. Since then, the company launched a collection of clothing whose guiding principle is simple and refined lines. That doesn’t mean the garments lack feminine appeal, on the contrary. The soft fabrics flow so elegantly it is hard not to touch. The unexpected details are playful and hint at the designers’ passionate eyes. With shops in Paris, Florence and Bologna, this is a shop to know and keep an eye out for on the international scene.
Locanda della Seconda Balena in Vicolo Balena 2, is a quaint wine bar could not be situated anywhere more appropriate. Its location is classic Italian, along a narrow alleyway, with lounge chairs spilling out onto the narrow passage. The interiors have been restored but only delicately decorated, leaving history to speak for itself. Here, empty wine bottles serve an immediate after life as converted vases while the settled flowers emit their sweet perfumes. Experiment with the region’s wonderful wines and if pre-dinner tummy growls take over, the bar’s appetizers will definitely warm and open your palette.
Dinner at Ristorante Ponte Pietra
Classic goes far, and Ristorante Ponte Pietra in Via Ponte Pietra 34, is the ultimate destination for this kind of local experience. Located at a charming corner just by Ponte Pietra (Stone Bridge) whose first stones were set 2000 years ago, the restaurant was designed with lots of mirrors, where glasses hang from every angle, from the bar to the narrow overhead shelves willing to hold up the crystal ware. Sparkling lights twinkle everywhere, and setting are elegantly set up with plush seating and restored furniture from the 1800s. Relaxed romance is the order of the day. Under the direction of Veronese chef Michael Silhavi, guests get a taste for traditional cuisine with ingredients sourced by local suppliers, and yet, the well experienced chef manages to infuse a sparkling spirit into his dishes. Start with the Shrimp tartare with smoked Mozzarella, Cherry Tomatoes confit or go for Risotto with Peas, Ginger and Black Cuttelfish or the Guinea Fowl with Peas, Goat Cheese and Wasabi.
Late Night Drinks
‘The cure for everything’, the business card reads. There is a reason The Soda Jerk are doing good in running their affairs, too. The barmen at this secreted establishment know cocktails down to the last shot, and put their creative masterpieces on display on a long slab of marble stone, illuminated by minimal lighting. The hidden lounge bar behind the restored walls is intimate, cozy and intriguing, for you get a glimpse into Veronese nightlife. While most are lingering by the gates of Romeo and Juliet’s famous balcony, locals here have gone to the cave in search of something to call their modern own. Soda Jerk in Vicolo Quadrelli 5 marks the spot.
Looking to get a glimpse into local nightlife? Terrazza Bar Al Ponte in Via Ponte Pietra 26, is indeed what it claims that itself to be – but with much more edge. If you can get a spot outside at the bar, overlooking the Adige River, there is not much need to move, unless you want to casually dance in and out of the lounge area to order a second round of drinks.
Planning on visiting Verona?
Located in the northeast of Italy, Verona is a popular choice for a day tour from Venice. Our local travel designers are here to help you plan your perfect day trip to Verona.