Wandering Verona – first impressions

I wandered Verona in the late afternoon – still probably 25 degrees temperature and a glaring sun.

Odd mixture of a place – the main central attractions were interesting enough, but slightly lost in people and traffic, not least the terrible tourist trap that is Juliet’s house and balcony.

But on the banks of the river Adige I found some wonderful spots – the old roman theatre clambering up the hillside with multiple layers of medieval development on top of the roman base. Views across the river to St Georgio church and a tower way up on a hill beyond. The Castelvecchio with its calm inner courtyard and then access onto the delightful walled bridge the Ponte Scaligero which was wonderfully picked out in the evening light and thronging with walkers and cyclists using it to get home. If I lived here I would go a long way round to use this traffic free route on my way home to avoid the busy streets.

View across River AdigeAnd of course as always in Italy the gems. Tucked away in side streets are tiny scenes of calm, balconies and porticoes with tables to eat and swathes of greenery.

My favourite so far? The Roman Theatre is set up as an amphitheatre for plays and music and while I was wandering up its many layers a band was doing sound checks and playing odd tracks through the speakers. The sound was muffled outside, but as I climbed up the many chambers, cloisters and secret gardens the perfect acoustics of the theatre forced it to well up and drifted through windows, around corners and into private corners where I was almost alone and away from the city. Precious.


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