Verona, one of the most romantic cities in Italy
Verona, who sees you and soon does not love you of irresistible love, these, I think, does not love himself, is devoid of any sense of love and detests every beautiful thing.Giovanni Cotta
Famous for being one of Italy’s most romantic cities, Verona has a charm which is recognized all over the world. It is no surprise in fact that generations of poets and writers have told its beauties, a case in point being William Shakespeare who made it the setting to the work he is probably most famous for, which to this day lends Verona that area of mystery which is so typical of this town.
Verona, he who sees you and immediately does not fall in love with you, he I believe does not love himself, does not know what love is and hates all beautiful things.
When we think of romance the first city that comes to mind is Verona. Let us be clear and state that there are other romantic cities in Italy but Verona is shrouded in love and mystery that will always characterize it. For over 400 years this town has earned itself the title of city of lovers thanks to William Shakespeare’s tragedy set in the Italian town: Romeo and Juliet.
But the thing that more than any other strikes about Verona is the mystery that hovers like fog on the tale of the most famous lovers of western literature. There is no evidence that they ever existed, yet Verona seems to be shaped by their romance. Shakespeare’s mastery has made the tale feel so real keeping that fire burning for over four centuries.
Romeo and Juliet’s places
Among the most iconic places in Verona is the famous balcony of Juliet, facing the cloister of the Stallo del Cappello where today there is a bronze statue of Juliet. This ancient house-tower dater to 1300 today holds the collection of garments and props of the famous movie by Franco Zeffirelli.
Although there is no historic evidence that this house ever belonged to the Capuleti family, Juliet’s balcony is one of the most visited places in the city and certainly the most photographed by the crowd of lovers who choose Verona as destination for a romantic weekend. But there is more than Juliet’s house. Not far from the town center in fact there is a building that is traditionally claimed to have belonged to the Montecchi family.
As testament to how Shakespeare’s work has shaped and permeated the atmosphere and history of Verona, next to the Bra’s doors there is a bust that portrays the English poet and a plaque with the famous verses said by Romeo when forced to leave Verona.
“…There is no world without Verona walls,
But purgatory, torture, hell itself.
Hence-banished is banish’d from the world,
And world’s exile is death...”
Last but not least among the most attended places by lovers of literature is Juliet’s tomb. Places in the crypt of the church of San Francesco al Corso, in an old Franciscan monastery, this open and empty sarcophagus stands for the place where everything would end and where, according to the story, the two lovers would finally find peace forever, far way from a world that did not want them close to each other.
The places beyond the myth
Beyond the myth what remains is a city rich with history that oozes tradition. The starting point for a walk in the old town center has to be Piazza Bra where you get to marvel at the Arena of Verona, year after the setting of many important shows and events.
From Piazza Bra you easily get to Piazza Erbe by crossing the town’s most famous shopping street Corso Porta Nuova. Between a shop and another you will easily end up in small lovely alleys from which you will get to see romantic views, perfect to be the backdrop of a day at the discovery of one of the most charming and romantic cities in Italy and in the world.
Cover Image: mondoaeroporto