Verona, a romantic city

“O Romeo, Romeo! wherefore art thou Romeo? / Deny thy father and refuse thy name. /  Or if thou wilt not, be but sworn my love / And I’ll no longer be a Capulet.” (William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet, 2.2) I bet you can quickly guess where the best place in the world to read this play is. The answer is, of course, Juliet’s famous balcony in the even more famous town, Verona. Shakespeare succeeded in writing an immortal love story that has been touching on us ever since and in making Verona a romantic city world widely acknowledged. The best part about Verona is that it is organized in such a manner as to give the hope we are all looking for, whether single or in a couple.

Juliet’s house

Verona ©

This is obviously the first place to pick so as to experience the romantic side of the city. Visiting this house brings the legend to life and what strikes you first are the thousands of messages written on the walls of the courtyard by the many, many people that visited this house. Reading their love hopes creates at once a magical atmosphere that will only be enhanced once you start your visiting tour. Even though you are constantly aware of the fact that everything in there is man-produced (even the balcony didn’t exist before 1936 when it was added during some restoration works), it is just so easy to go with the flow and feel ‘the love’. Once in the courtyard, you have to stay in line to get to touch Juliet’s right breast so as to have good luck in love. Ok, let me make this clearer: there is a bronze statue of Juliet’s in the courtyard and the legend has it that touching her (now glittering) right breast is sign of fortune. Of course it sounds a bit silly but who are we to question the paths of love. In the house, there are a lot of paintings depicting the balcony love scene as imagined by various painters. Then, you get to even send an email to Juliet as there are several touch screens especially designed for you write something to her. I know I sound a bit ironical because when I write about it is seems mushy but once you’re actually there, believe me, all you can think of is love.

Romeo’s house

Verona ©

Montague’s house and implicitly, that of Romeo’s is found on Via (meaning ‘street’) dele Arche Scalingeri nr.2-4. Unfortunately, this is closed for visitors so you can only admire it from outside. Still, it is an important part of Verona and you have to include it in your tour. It just seems a perfect means to unite them time and again in this way. Also, his house is not flooded with tourists so it gives you a moment to reflect in peace about their sad love story and maybe on your own (mis)fortune when it comes to love.

With these being said, I conclude my post on Verona, a romantic city and choose to quote, yet again, a true master of words: “He jests at scars that never felt a wound. / But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks? / It is the east, and Juliet is the sun”.

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