“Go wisely and slowly. Those who rush stumble and fall.” 

Those wise words are written by Shakespeare (and we take them very serious on this journey). To be more precise, the words are written in the beautiful love story ‘Romeo and Juliet’. You probably know where I’m going now. Well, we didn’t actually. After walking the streets of Verona in search of the tourist attraction we got lost, amazed by the beauty of the city and awed by incredible buildings we wouldn’t see if in normal times we would follow the flock of tourists to a tiny alley. That tiny alley leads to the reason of tourism in Verona. But, I think that would not do Verona justice.

Romeo and Juliet

To be honest, I do not know much about Romeo and Juliet, even though I got the complete works of Shakespeare in my home. But, I do know of the balcony in Verona and the wall covered in, not love notes but gum. Luckily the walls are cleaned and no tourists could be found anywhere near the balcony. We had the whole place to ourselves, we could’ve written as many love notes as we wanted. We didn’t write any… We also didn’t touch the breast of the statue of Juliet. Normally I find it kind of weird to touch the breast of a woman I do not know and that feeling doesn’t change with a statue, whether it brings luck or it doesn’t. Also, it is not allowed to touch her breast at the moment. Not because of a #metoo initiative but because of Covid-19.

Whether this is the balcony Shakespeare writes about is not known, still many many tourists come to this particular part of Verona just to see the balcony.

The military defence architecture of the city

However, Verona is more much more than a balcony and touching the breast of Juliet. There are amazing buildings, tombs and churches and there is even an arena! Not as big as the Colosseum but still, pretty impressive. Verona also has a castle, cute squares and two city gates to enter the old town. You can find good food, nice drinks and very kind people in the city.

The history of the city spans more than 2.000 years! Already in the first century BCE a Roman colony was established at this strategic spot. Isn’t that amazing? Verona belongs to the Venetian Republic from 1405 to 1797.

The tusk of the elephant

Something I found rather interesting is the tusk of an elephant hanging below an age. Of course that has a story, so here it comes; it is said that the elephant tusk would fall on the first bypassed who is free of sins. So, of course it hangs there for centuries and will keep hanging there for centuries. But, a fun fact is that thousands of tourists, including popes from Rome, are passing through the arch. We did as well and guess what? It still hangs there.

We visited Verona just for a day and I think that is enough but I’m sure when all the museums are open you can stay here for a weekend, enjoy some opera, eat your way through the city and get to know all about their buildings and the strange stories like the Elephant Tusk Story.§

Love, Milene & Yuri