Best Things to Do and See in Verona – Best One Day Itinerary
Verona is one of the most beautiful and charming places in Italy – at least, that was my conclusion after visiting this city!
If the first and only thing that comes to mind when hearing about Verona is Shakespeare‘s “Romeo and Juliet,” then you are like me. I didn’t know how pretty this city is and so I never really had it high on my bucket list.
But, guys, Verona is so pretty that I was totally overwhelmed, happy, and shocked. How could I have not known about the top attractions in Verona – apart from Juliet´s balcony?
I don’t know. However, if I had to name my 5 favorite places in Italy, Verona would be amongst them, and you will soon find out why to add the city to your itinerary and what to do in Verona. So, if you ware wondering what to do in Verona, where to go in Verona and what to see in Verona this post is for you!
This post should help you figure out why you should visit Verona in the first place, about the best things to do while there, about Verona’s best attractions and best points of interest (apart from Juliet‘s balcony), and the post can also serve as a one-day itinerary for Verona.
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VERONA TRAVEL TIPS
Before talking about your Verona itinerary, here is some info for your first trip to Verona.
Why Visit Verona
Verona is a medieval town/city, and besides its colorful and pretty buildings spread throughout the city, it is also well known for its archaeological sites (okay, I admit that I had not known about them prior to my visit), museums and lively piazzas, and the pretty Aldige River – with several interesting bridges. Verona has no shortage of beautiful places.
I truly believe it should be on any Italy itinerary, and while one day is probably not enough, it will at least allow you to get a good glimpse of the city (and it will make you hungry for a second trip).
Thus, it should be on any Italy and especially Northern Italy itinerary.
How to Get to Verona
Verona has an airport – Verona Villafranca Airport (also known as Valerio Catullo Airport) which is just 10 km outside the city center. The cheapest (and still convenient way) to get to the town center is via bus (one-way costs around $7).
We (my parents and me) came from Lake Garda and drove by car and parked quite far – just to avoid driving in the city center (Italian´s cities have narrow streets and people drive a bit…let´s say reckless, so I avoid city and town centers wherever possible). However, there are plenty of places to park but most you will have issues finding free parking spots, so especially during peak season, free parking will be almost impossible.
If you come from other places in Italy, then come by train. Public transportation in Italy is quite good – often very budget friendly and easy to use (and even punctual most of the time).
It just takes about 15 minutes to walk from the train station to the city center (but there are also buses going to and from the city center to the train station).
Tip: Verona Card
I did not have the Verona Card, which I actually regretted because it can help you save a lot of money and also some time (allowing you to skip lines).
I paid around 8€ for the Lamberti Tower alone. The Verona Card costs only 18€ for 24 hours (and 22€ for 48 hours).
You get access to most of the tourist attractions in Verona and can use the public buses in Verona with the ticket.
How to Get Around Verona
Verona is a very compact city – you can visit all of the mentioned places by walking.
While you can see all the places in 1 day in Verona, I wish I had more time to visit a few more places. There are sightseeing buses and Italy tends to have a good public transportation system in general. With the Verona Card, you can even use public transportation for free.
Bring a reusable water bottle – there are a few water fountains in the city where you can refill your water with fresh drinking water.
Wear comfortable shoes so you can visit all the pretty places and walk to most places.
How to Get Around Verona
Verona is a very compact city – you can visit all of the mentioned places by walking. While you can see all the places in 1 day in Verona, I wish I had more time to visit a few more places. There are sightseeing buses and Italy tends to have a good public transportation system in general. With the Verona Card, you can even use public transportation for free.
Where to Stay in Verona
We, unfortunately, did only a day trip but if I could change back the hands of time, I would stay at least one night in Verona. I highly suggest, picking a hotel directly in the city center.
Verona Best Things to Do – Perfect Itinerary
Okay, let’s start with the best tips for things to do in Verona, Italy ine one day.
Visit Casa di Giulietta ( Juliet´s House) and Write a Love Letter
Here we are, starting the day with William Shakespeare and the most famous love story: Romeo and Juliet. More famous than Juliet´s house is probably Juliet´s balcony.
Yes, you might be underwhelmed by the balcony, but you might be overwhelmed by the crowds, as this is probably the most crowded place in Verona.
If you get here very early in the morning, you might be able to escape the crowds. In one tiny space, people from all over the world mill around and rub against the bronze statue of Guilietta. What might sound like fun to some is really something in between a nightmare and a spectacle, so start here early or towards the evening when most crowds have gone home.
You can also write a letter to Juliet. If you put it in the mailbox, you will eventually receive an answer. No worries, Juliet hasn’t come back to life (how scary would that be?), but one of the volunteers will answer your letter, even if it may take a few months. You can also just leave a message on the wall.
For the entry fee, you can also visit the house (tickets are about 5€, free with your Verona Card) and stand on the balcony, where important scenes of Shakespeare´s play took place (apparently, it is not worth it unless you have a Verona Card and you don’t have to pay extra).
Located next to the Piazza dei Signori and close to Juliet´s house, you find the Scaliger Tombs. These are gothic, funerary monuments dedicated to the influential Scaliger family, who ruled Verona in the 13th and 14th centuries.
Piazza dei Signori
A smaller, but still charming, Piazza is the Piazza dei Signori. Follow the highest tower in the area (Lamberti Tower) and you are almost there. Beautiful, historic buildings call the square home. In the middle sits the Statue of Dante Alighieri, a prominent poet, and philosopher who lived in Verona for a time.
The statue itself is a popular photo motif, but the buildings and restaurants around make this place even more special.
Torre dei Lamberti / Lamberti Tower
Standing on the Piazza delle Erbe, the Torre dei Lamberti is the tallest tower in Verona, standing at 84 meters high. It is not only great to visit, but the perfect meeting point (do you choose the highest building in a city as your meeting place when traveling with others, too?).
The tower can do more than just be a great place to meeting up. Among other things, it offers great views over Verona if you climb up the 368 steps. Decide for yourself if climbing so many stairs and paying an 8€ entry fee is worth it to see the whole city spread out before you. (Okay, you could also use a lift, but seriously, the most fun was climbing these stairs.)
Open every day (hours of operation are 8:30 am – 7:30 pm), and free with your Verona Card.
Tip: Though the tower stands at Piazza delle Erbe, the entrance is around at Piazza dei Signori.
Admire the Piazza delle Erbe
Just next to Piazza dei Signori is the Piazza delle Erbe. I judge cities, towns, and villages based on their (market) squares – and Verona had me with its charming, lively, busy, and fun squares. I can’t decide which square I love the most, but Piazza delle Erbe is one of my two favorites.
This diamond-shaped piazza lies in the heart of the historic center of the city with many beautiful buildings and statues, including the Fontana Madonna, the Torre dei Lamberti, and the Palazzo Maffei.
It is also a great starting point if you want to go shopping.
Tip: You have a lot of different restaurants and cafes in Verona, and if you like people watching while dining, this square is probably a good choice for your lunch break. Prices here tend to be more expensive, so if you are on a budget, head to one of the side streets to enjoy some delicious pasta.
Okay, here are some more Verona sightseeing tips.
Stroll the Adige River
The Adige River is the second largest river in Italy, flowing from South Tyrol to the Adriatic Sea. The Piazza delle Erbe is just a stone’s throw away from the river.
I recommend walking the river for 15-20 minutes, and see the most interesting bridge in Verona, so head to the Castelvecchio Bridge.
Castelvecchio Bridge / Scaliger Bridge
Walking along the river, you will see this interesting bridge. The Castelvecchio Bridge, also known as the Scaliger Bridge, is a fortified bridge that was built in the 14th century and was the longest one of its kind at that time.
The wall of the bridge is so high in some parts that you can’t look over it. Luckily, there are stairs that you can climb to enjoy an elevated viewpoint. On warm days, you might be lucky enough to find some musicians playing lovely music on the bridge.
From there, head to the Verona Arena. It is just a ten-minute walk (passing Piazza Pasque Veronesi, among others) and you will see the next main Verona attraction.
Arena di Verona / Verona Arena
The arena looks like the little sibling of the Colosseum in Rome but is actually a few decades older – though you wouldn’t guess it, it‘s 2,000 years old. It is actually the third biggest amphitheater in Italy and one of the best tourist sights in Verona.
Like the Colosseum, it was also a venue used for gladiator and animal fights. Nowadays, it is used for operas and theater plays, and it is open to visitors.
Despite its brutal and violent past, it is now a must-see place in Verona. Early in the morning, the lines aren’t that long, so I suggest you start here (or buy skip the line tickets). In the afternoon, it gets busy though (that is why I had to skip seeing the inside).
Opening times change depending on the season and whether an opera is going on, but normally, it is open from Tuesday to Sunday (closed on Mondays) from 8:30 am to 7:30 pm.
Prices are around 10€ (free with your Verona Card or if you have a Trentino Guest Card).
Another one that falls under the category “What to see in Verona, Italy”. I am all about market squares, and Verona has two main market squares. Two very beautiful market squares! And one of them is the lively and lovely Piazza Bra.
I was already in love when I arrived at Piazza Bra in the afternoon, but if I had needed another reason to love the city, then this would have had me completely convinced.
In mid-September, it was busy and full of people, but in a fun and nice way. Seeing all the pretty Italians strolling their city while we were sitting on a bench with a view of the arena, the colorful houses, and the Emmanuel Statue (Statue a Vittorio Emanuele II) made me wonder if I should live here for a year or so.
(If I were to move to Italy, then Verona would be it. While I still struggle with their political choices, which is actually why I don’t see myself living there, I sometimes still daydream of coming to Verona for a few weeks.)
Tip: While Verona can be wonderfully explored on foot, you could jump onto one of the small sightseeing trains that start here and do a quick tour to end the day.
Personally, I think these Verona activities will keep you busy for a day – these Verona sights were my favorites, but I can’t claim that I saw them all. If you have more time, then plan to visit some more top places in Verona.
More Things to See in Verona:
Castel San Pietro
Duomo di Verona
The Church of San Zeno Maggiore
Read more: The perfect 7-1o itinerary for Northern Italy – click here
I am sure that I will head back to Verona and explore it in a more leisurely way – the city has just a great vibe and it deserves more time than one day – but one day in Verona is better than nothing. So, hopefully, you enjoy the place as much as I did and this Verona itinerary helps you find the most beautiful places to visit in Verona.