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Verona, famous in Italy and around the world for the Arena and Juliet's house

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: then banished, Is death mis-term'd: calling death banishment, thou cutt'st my head off with a golden axe, and smilest upon the stroke that murders me."


William Shakespeare

     

Verona is an Italian city of about 265.000 inhabitants, capital of the province of Verona in the province of Veneto. It is one of the main tourist destinations in north-eastern Italy, thanks to its artistic heritage, several annual fairs, shows and operas, such as the lyrical season in the Arena, the ancient amphitheatre built by the Romans.

Verona is a very important city for its unique and breathtaking range of works of art  and monuments and has recently been awarded the status of a "World Heritage Site" by UNESCO. The city has a complex structure, emphasised by the walls that separate the Roman and the modern part (up to the second half of the nineteenth century). The Roman walls circle the city between Porta Borsari, Porta Leoni and the walls of Gallieno, on the other the ring road with Renaissance fortifications (finished under Austrian rule).
 

Arena of Verona

Piazza Bra, tel. 045 8003204, open every day from 8.30 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. except Monday, open from 1.45 p.m.

The Arena, together with "Juliet's House" is the monument for which Verona is famous not only in Italy but all over the world. It is the third biggest amphitheatre in Italy after the Coliseum in Rome and the arena in Capua. It has a capacity to hold twenty thousand people, which is thought to be the entire population of Verona in the 1st century D.C., when it was built. It was built just outside the city walls (still partially visible behind the amphitheatre) in a big open space that, with the construction of the new walls in the twelfth century, became Piazza Bra.  Naturally the amphitheatre was not built to  hold operas or concerts. Amphitheatres were in fact the place where the ancient Romans watched gladiators fighting and other cruel performances. The name "Arena" means "sand" and comes from the sand on the floor of the amphitheatre placed there  to soak up the  blood of the fighters. It is not clear whether naumachias, ever took place here: Roman naval battles using real boats in amphitheatres specially filled with water for the occasion! 

Juliet's House

Via Cappello, 23; tel. 045 8034303, open every day from 8.30 a.m. to 6.45 p.m., Monday from 1.30 to 6.45 p.m. 

Juliet’s House, in Via Cappello, has medieval type towers with a courtyard where spice merchants used to live. The courtyard was originally bigger than today and did not have the two sixteenth century additions which now house the souvenir ship and the foyer of Nuovo Theatre, and an early twentieth century block of flats.  At the end of the 1960s a bronze statue of Juliet was placed in the courtyard; tourists and lovers now have their photos taken with this in the picture. It appears that William Shakespeare, the important English writer who made Verona and its tragedy famous, never actually visited here!If these two young people, Romeo and Juliet, existed or not in Verona, this place remains one of those most visited in this city ,which indicates that the theme of love (even without a happy ending) is always popular!

Castelvecchio and Ponte Scaligero

From Porta Palio to Corso Cavour; tel. 0458003204, outside: always open; Museum: open every day and holidays from 8.30 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. except Monday from 1.30 p.m. to 7.30 p.m.

The Castle Castelvecchio and its splendid fortified bridge, the most important military construction of the Scaligero dynasty that ruled the city in the Middle Ages, is today an important part of the urban space and landscape. When it was built by Cangrande II della Scala in 1354 it was called Castello di San Martino in Acquaro, from the name of the little older church that was enclosed inside the castle . It was called Castelvecchio (old castle) when, after the construction of the “new” castle on the summit of the San Pietro Hills (1398), this one became "old". The medieval fortress  today houses an interesting museum, the Castelvecchio Museum (Museo Civico di Castelvecchio). The Scaligero bridge, finished in just 3 years (1354-6), was built  to provide  a safe escape route northwards to the Tyrol in the event of a rebellion or a coup d'état.

The Roman Theatre

Rigaste Redentore, 2; tel 045 800360, open every day from 8.30 a.m. to 7.30 p.m. except Mondays from 1.45 to 7.30 p.m.

The Roman Theatre is the oldest building in Verona. It was built in the 1st century A.D. close to the San Pietro hills, exploiting the natural slope of the land to construct the tiers of seats, as the Greeks  had done before the Romans. Despite its bad state of repair, the theatre, like the Arena, is still in use today. In the summer  a Shakespeare festival and the Verona Jazz festival are organised here. The entrance ticket to the theatre is also valid for theVerona Archeological  Museum (housed in the ex-convent of the Gesuits, built near the theatre) where the numerous  artefacts and objects donated by the city of Verona are displayed.

The Lamberti​ Tower

Via della Costa, 1; tel 045 9273027, every day from 9.30 a.m. to 8.30 p.m., Friday and Saturday until 12 midnight.

The Tower is called after its first owners, the Lamberti, it was probably the most eminent member of the family, Bozeno de Lamberti, who commissioned the building in 1172. About thirty years later, the Tower became an integral part of the building of the municipality of Verona, built around it because of its strategic position, and its height was raised several times until it reached its present height of 83 metres, making it the highest in the city.

For information about visits, the opera season and the Teatro Filarmonico see the internet site: www.arena.it

It is also possible to buy tickets for performances online.

 

Lungadige Porta Vittoria, 9
Tel. 045 8079400

Official site: mcsnat@comune.verona.it

Opening hours:
open from 9.00 am to 7.00 pm from Monday to Saturday, open from 2.00 pm to 7.00 pm on Sunday and Holidays, Friday closed

Inputs:
full € 2,10
reduced € 1,00

 

Via Redentore, 2
Tel. 045 8000360

Opening hours:
open from 2.00 pm to 6.30 pm on Monday, open from 8.30 am to 6.30 pm from Tuesday to Saturday

Inputs:
full € 2,60
reduced (groups and students from 14 to 30 years old) € 1,50 
reduced price till 14 years old people ​€ 1,00

 

Cicolo Pozzo, 1
Tel. 0458092390

Official site: www.museoafricano.org
Official site: museo.africano@comboniani.org