Verona, one of Italy’s most important touristic cities, is especially renowned for the legendary story of Romeo and Juliet which was originally put to paper by Luigi da Porto from Vicenza and a few decades later inspired William Shakespeare to write one of his masterpieces. Most interesting is the well kept Roman amphitheatre, simply known as the Arena, in which monumental operas and music events take place during the yearly open air Festival with space for an audience of 15000 people at a time.
Thanks to its geographical position and to the fact that Italy’s second river, the Adige traverses the city, Verona’s eminent history began more than 2000 years ago. Important and amazingly well preserved remains of past times can be seen throughout the historical city center.
Due to the amount of monuments of various historical periods, it is possible to undertake didactic tours in Verona, which are suited for school classes who wish to study a subject in depth.
The guides of Verona offer tours to discover the churches and city museums which contain unique artistic treasures. Among the museums, there are the Castelvecchio Museum, the underground excavations of the Scaligeri Palace, the Maffeiano Museum and the Archeological Museum together with its Roman Theatre.
Guided tourss in the Province of Verona
Farther, many guided tours take place within the territory of the province of Verona where the tasting of local specialties is also possible:
The Veronese part of Lake Garda offers a great variety of artistic, historical and naturalistic sites of importance.
Also of interest are the wine production areas of Verona’s province, which include the famous Valpolicella (Amarone wines), as well as the Bardolino, Lugana and Custoza wine zones.
In the eastern part of Verona’s Province a notorious white wine has its origin, the Soave, which is also the name of its little town with a castle and medieval citywalls within a hilly landscape of kind and noble beauty.
Besides the mentioned tours, the guides of Verona also will personalize any specifically requested tour for both groups and individual tourists.
For further information and details or to book your tour in Verona do not hesitate to contact Assoguide Veneto.
Verona itself is a work of art, altough it’s mainly known for the tragical history of Romeo and Juliet.
Beautiful Roman and Medieval buildings are boasted along narrow streets in the ancient city-centre embraced by a winding river and cozy hills.
The whole town offers a variety of sites for different tastes. It’s even a perfect set for a romantic stroll, especially at sunset.
An half-day sightseeing tour will give you the knowledge of all the highlights of the city, covering Romeo’s and Juliet’s House, the Roman Arena, the ancient Castle, lovely squares and dramatic landscapes.
A full-day could include the visit of some monuments such as the Roman Arena, the Romanesque Basilica of Saint Zeno, the Renaissance Giusti Gardens, the Art-Deco Synagogue; another opportunity could be to experience a wine-tasting in the countryside or a boat tour on Lake Garda.
Duration: half-day city guided tour 2 hours circa, 2 and a half with bus/ coach; full-day city tour 5 to 6 hours circa
Difficulties: the 2 hours classical city-tour suits everyone; some Museums, Churches, Wineries, Gardens might have some architectonic hindrances
Entrances: not included
It is not known if Romeo and Juliet actually really existed. Nevertheless, many traces and historical facts are present in Verona which are related to the tragic story written by Luigi da Porto and afterwards rearranged by the literary genius in the 1596 version of William Shakespeare. Verona actually was involved in the conflicts of Guelfs and Ghibellines which often led to the hatred between families within the city. Historical evidence confirms the existence of the Montecchi family (the Montagues in Shakespeare version) and certain elements suggest the existence of a family named Capuleti (the Capulets).
Guided Shakespearian tour
With a guided tour it will be possible to visit the sites related to the Shakespeare version of Romeo and Juliet. The tour includes the city walls mentioned by Romeo during his exile to Mantua, the buildings from the Scala Family, who owned the power in Verona at the time and of course the house of Romeo and the nearby house of Juliet with the famous balcony and bronze statue.
Duration of the guided tour: 2 hours
Difficulty: The tour does not presents any specific difficulties.
ROMAN VERONA TOUR
Ever since the three consular road connectionsPostumia, Gallica and Claudia Augusta had been completed, Verona became strategically very important during Roman times. In fact as far as to the number and amount of Roman remains, Verona is listed second in Italy after Rome.
Up to the present day, it is possible to recognize the typical Roman urban structure with the cardo anddecumanus maximus, the main roads of every Roman town, the forum (the main square) and the city gates.
Farther, the two grand buildings of entertainment are present: an elongated half circle shaped theatre, the so called Teatro Romano, as well as an amphitheatre, the so called Arena. Besides these buildings several remains of both public and private edifices, such as temples and luxurious houses (domus) paved with mosaics can still be seen under the Palazzi of the historic center.
Roman Verona Guided Tour
The tour commences at the triumphal Gavi arch, a monumental celebrative construction which was commissioned by one of Verona’s most important families of the time. The tour continues along the ancient Postumia road, today’s Corso Cavour, across the Borsari gate, which was originally dedicated to Jupiter, until it is possible to reach the river Adige where the Postumia bridge had been positioned. From here it is possible to see the Teatro Romano below the hills which surround Verona in the northeast together with the Roman arches of the Pietra bridge (1st Century b.C.).
The guided tour then continues towards Piazza delle Erbe, which used to be the Roman Forum and is in fact positioned at the crossing of the ancient decumanusand cardo maximus, today’s Via Cappello which ends at the Roman Lion gate. This gate still has part of its double facade, stone upon brick corresponding respectively to the imperial and republican periods. Thanks to partial excavations of the Lion gate in modern times, it is possible to look down to the ground level of this fortified structure with the remains of two round towers.
By following the traces of the ancient city walls, Verona’s most distinguished and eminent monument of Roman times, the Arena, which dates back to the 1st century AD, can be seen.
Duration of the guided tour: approximately 2 hours
Difficulty: suitable for everybody
Visit within a Roman theatre, Roman excavations or a Museum: by request and adding an additional hour.
The access with a wheelchair presents difficulties only in the Archeological Museum.
MEDIEVAL VERONA TOUR
The history of Verona during the Middle Ages include the Communal period as well as the times dominated by the the Scala Family, the so called Signoria Scaligera. This period highly distinguished decades of Veronese history: up to today the imago urbis (the city’s layout) is characterized by the numerous churches, palaces, both city and bell towers from these times. Quite often Verona is known as the “Scala city”, but also as the “city of love”, because of the world famous romance of Romeo and Juliet which took place in Verona in the early 14th century.
Throughout Medieval times Verona grew in terms of economy, agriculture and trade in the context and areas of the important religious orders and monastic centers, such as the Benedictine San Zeno area. As the Scala Family gained the power an important position was obtained among the European courts, which reached the highest level during the rulership of Cangrande I della Scala (1291-1329), thus becoming politically and economically so important that also the cultural aspect was not neglected when hospitality was given to the great poet Dante Alighieri and Francesco Petrarcacame to study ancient manuscripts in Verona and both Giotto and Pisanello created or influenced magnificent works of art in the city.
Castelvecchio – Verona old castle
The guided tour at the discovery of Medieval Verona can begin at the castle of San Martino in Aquaro, better known as Castelvecchio. This castle together with its magnificent bridge and towers, built during the 14th century, was the home of the Scala Family at the time and nowadays is one of Verona’s most important city Museums containing Medieval sculptures and an entire floor of paintings and frescoes of six different centuries.
From these powerful defensive castle and wall structures the tour continues in the historic city center near the Roman Iovia gate, called porta dei Borsari in Medieval times, when so called Bursari, men with bags, collected taxes for those who intended to trade merchandise within the city in specific trading areas, such as the Stal de le Vecie or else the Sgarzerie, which represented the center of wool production during the Scala era.
Piazza Erbe and Piazza dei Signori
Still today, the heart of Verona consists in the commercial center of piazza delle Erbe, with its Medieval town hall the Palazzo del Comune and the high Gardello and Lamberti towers, the Madonna Verona fountain and the Domus Mercatorum; whereas the political city center is the nearby piazza dei Signori, surrounded by buildings of administration which include the Palazzo of the Scala Family and the little nearby Romanesque church of Santa Maria della Scala adjacent to the magnificent gothic Scala cemetery and tombs, known as the Arche Scaligere.
To conclude with, an ideal Medieval tour in Verona must include the legendary houses of Romeo Montecchi (Montagues) and Juliet Capuleti (Capulets).
Duration of the guided tour: 2 hours
Difficulty: solely on foot or else with a bus at disposal, the tour does not presents any specific difficulties.
By adding an extra hour or more, it is possible to visit the Museum of Castelvecchio or one of the important Medieval churches (entrance fees not included) such as San Zeno, San Fermo, the Cathedral or Sant’Anastasia or else (with a bus at disposal) a panoramic city tour along the Medieval city walls in the beautiful hills surrounding the city of Verona in the north east, is possible.
In the year 1405 the influential members of Verona’s nobility decided to give the keys of the city to Venice which at the time was enlarging its land territories, the Terraferma. This put an end to the terrible bloodshed and disorders which had been affecting the city of Verona at the time. Thus, Verona became part of the powerful Serenissima Republic of Venice until Napoleon Bonaparte took control over the Venetian territories in the last decade of the 18th century. Almost four centuries of peace and economic stability characterized the Veronese history during this Venetian period and many important churches, city palaces and magnificent works of art were commissioned to artists such as Pisanello, Michele Sanmicheli, Paolo Veronese, Andrea Mantegna and many others.
The guided tour to discover Venetian Verona
Accompanied by a tourist guide, possibly by bus, the 16th century city walls and city gates of Porta Nuova, Porta Palio and Porta San Zeno can be seen which were part of the new defense system built and designed by Michele Sanmicheli, who was the most important architect during the Venetian domain of Verona.
Further, the church of San Zeno can be visited where the altar painting by Andrea Mantegna represents the purest example of Renaissance art in Verona, or else the Monastery of San Bernardino with a painting by Francesco Benaglio and the magnificent Pellegrini chapel designed by Sanmicheli.
The guided tour on foot continues in the historic center of Verona and includes the main buildings of the Venetian administration, such as the Loggia del Consiglio, which was the first example of Renaissance architecture in the entire Veneto region, the town hall Palazzo della Ragione and the Domus Nova.
In Piazza Erbe square the magnificently frescoed Case Mazzanti are an important example of mannerist art. Together with other frescoed Palazzi the Urbs Picta (the painted and frescoed city) of Renaissance Verona is still visible today. Standing in front of the Baroque Palazzo Maffei, the winged lion of Venice, placed high up on the top of a column, is the powerful expression of the long lasting Venetian Republic.
The guided tour will end at Bra square near the Gran Guardia Palazzo.
Duration of the guided tour: 2,5 hours
Difficulty: The tour does not presents any specific difficulties.
For any further information and detail or to book a guided tour of Renaissance Verona do not hesitate to contact Verona tourist guides.
From 1814 to 1866 Verona and the Veneto Regionwere ruled by the Austrian that organized a fortified area called ‘Viereck’ or Quadrilateral between Verona, Peschiera, Mantua and Legnago. In 1866 the Veneto was joined to the Italian Kingdom.
Verona, always considered a military city due to its strategical location since the Roman times, along with the surrounding territory offers a huge variety of fortresses, palaces, gates, walls scattered here and there that still marks this part of the Region.
Half-day guided tour: walking sightseeing tour, mainly in the city centre: starting from the Arsenal we will cross the River to see some fortresses on the hills, reach Palazzo Carli, Palazzo Gran Guardia, Palazzo Barbieri to continue to the Monumental Cemetery.
Full-day guided tour: first part by coach, to reach the outskirts of Verona seeing most of the Austrian Fortresses built on the hills; second part on foot as per the half-day tour.
Duration: half-day, 2 to 3 hours; full-day 6 to 8 hours.
Difficulties: compulsory mean of transport for the full-day tour; some steps and slopes.
The choice of a guided tour to the churches of Verona offers a lot of possibilities. The sacred edifices which can be visited with a tourist guide of Asso Guide Veneto include the periods of early Christian, Romanesque, Gothic, Renaissance, Baroque, Rococo and 18th century times. All these eras and epochs have used their own way of artistic expression in worshipping God.
Early Christian churches in Verona
The remains of early Christian times can be detected in the ensemble of Verona’s cathedral on mosaic pavements which date back to the 4th and 5th centuries. These decorations testify Christian belief in Verona shortly after the edict of Constantine.
Other examples which date back to these early centuries can be found in the votive chapel of the Saints Teuteria and Tosca near the Apostoli church along the ancient Roman consular connection Postumia. Beautiful sarcophagi made of Paros marble can be admired in the crypt of San Giovanni in Valle, whereas columns made of Assuan granite support the crypt of the S. Stefano church.
Further churches of interest are Santa Maria in Organo, originally a longobard monastery and San Procolo where the first sanctified bishops were worshipped above the territory of an ancient Roman cemetary.
All the mentioned edifices were enlarged and adapted to the Romanesque style at the beginning of the new millennium.
Romanesque churches in Verona
The Romanesque architecture of Verona distinguishes itself by the construction of walls which alternate layers of bricks and tuff stone. The churches of this period were built on the left and right sides of the river Adige. The immediate access to water was necessary for the rite of baptism.
On the left side of the Adige river rises the church of Santo Stefano with its octagonal base made of red bricks, the church of Santa Maria in Organo with the precious Renaissance wooden inlays by Fra Giovanni and the church of San Giovanni in Valle which was the Arian baptismal church of the Ostrogoth King Theodoric.
On the right side of the Adige river lies the monastery of San Zeno Maggiore and the Cathedral which has been dedicated to Santa Maria Matricolare. Along the Postumia road, today’s Corso Cavour, rise the churches of San Lorenzo and Santi Apostoli, whereas the church of San Giovanni in Foro is situated along the former Roman Decumanus within the city gate Borsari, which had been dedicated to Jupiter.
Within the heart of the city lies a little Palatine church dedicated to Santa Maria Antica which in Gothic times was enriched above its doorway with the burial of Cangrande I della Scala. Again near the river, the Lower church of San Fermo Maggiore is a unique example of an 11th century Benedictine monastery, where the Ora et Labora rules dictated monastic living.
In all these churches works of art can be admired, such as preciously decorated capitals, votive frescoes and numerous paintings by great artists like Lorenzo Veneziano, Andrea Mantegna, Guercino, Titian and Paolo Veronese. Furthermore, the local artists Altichiero, Maestro Martino and many others left behind works of art which testify a great compositive and coloristic ability in several of the mentioned churches.
The Gothic style has been adapted in Verona in the times when both the Dominican and Franciscan religious orders arrived in Verona. A magnificent example is the church of Sant Anastasia, which was built by the ruling Veronese family of the Scaligeri, who welcomed the new aspects of the late 14th century.
Other important architectural expressions of this period are the Upper church of San Fermo, the church Saint Thomas of Canterbury and the church San Bernardino, the latter being both similar as to the Gothic construction, but incomparable as far as the works of art within the buildings are concerned.
With the end of the Signoria (the Scaligeri Lordship), the long lasting Venetian period commences in Verona, thus the Renaissance style takes over and enters the churches, raises the domes, adds new facades, altars and chapels made of precious marble.
A magnificent example of Renaissance art is the dome designed by Michele Sammicheli of San Giorgio in Braida, a church of early origin, which has been entirely renovated including the inside which will gradually be filled with paintings so to become a sort of art gallery. In churches which already existed, superb elements were added as, for instance the Pellegrini Chapel designed by Sammicheli in San Bernardino.
Especially beautiful are the frescoes and decorations in pure Renaissance style of the San Biagio chapel within the Church of San Nazaro and Celso.
Baroque churches in Verona
The theatrical aspect of Baroque style in Verona can be found in the church of Santo Stefano in the Varalli chapel and in 17th and 18th century churches which have been built by the post council orders, such as San Nicolò all’Arena, Santa Caterina alla Ruota, Santa Teresa agli Scalzi and San Domenico all’Acqua Traversa.
Guided tours in Verona’s churches
The aspect of Verona as a city is faithfully interspersed by the architectural beauty of styles throughout the centuries. Therefore, if accompanied by an expert guide, it is possible to undertake a great variety of interesting tours, which will constantly differ.
The tour can be personalized and in doing so can include the visit to a selection of churches which will either provide a general view or else focus on a specifically chosen period.
For further information and details do not hesitate to contact Asso Guide Veneto.
An unusual tour discovering the fascinating undergrounds of Verona; a guided tour for those who intend to enrich their knowledge of the traditional Roman tour of Verona.
As with many other Italian cities, also Verona conserves underground traces of antiquity at two to four meters under today’s city level. Some of these underground discoveries have become Museums open to the public.
The Verona Underground tour enables a glance throughout the past which from Medieval times gradually descends to the Roman origin of the city.
The Domus Romana of Piazza Nogara
Just a few meters below the street level under a bank building, it is possible to visit a Roman domus dating to the 1st century which was inhabited and adapted according to the following centuries until the 6th century A.D.
The astonishing discovery was made during building activity in the year 1976. Clever excavations and restoration technics of the ancient site conserve the structure of the Roman house wherein the colonnades, the ancient heating system (hypocaust), and rooms covered with geometrically designed colored mosaics are visible.
The remains of the capitolium were discovered in the years 1983 and 1984 under a private city palazzo near the Erbe square, the ancient Roman forum, and have been unearthed below the wine cellar of a famous Restaurant.
This temple, dedicated to the Capitoline Triad of Jupiter, Juno and Minerva was situated along the Consular Postumia Road within the Roman city center on one of the short sides of the Forum. The edifice, built during the middle of the 1st century B.C. in times of great building activity included an artificial terrace accessible by means of a stairway. From the original ancient rectangular structure with a pronaos hallway consisting in three rows of columns, parts of this pronaos including marble columns of Tuscan order and the plinth of a cult statue are visible 9 meters under the street level.
The Roman Curia
The archeological site of a public Roman edifice of the political and religious city center, the curia, was discovered in the 1980s under a famous Restaurant. An axis along the religious building presumably dedicated to the Imperial cult and 37 meters of the basement walls have been excavated.
A large portion of the Roman lateral sidewalks and the sewage system, the cloaca, are visible, even though a massive medieval square tower was built with ancient building materials on top of the road axis.
The Scala excavations
The site in question, excavated in the years 1981 to 1986, includes remains of edifices near the Erbe square dating to the 1st century B.C. up to the 15th century A.D. The excavated area has become the International Museum for Photography.
A few meters under today’s city level, the mosaic designs of a Roman domus floor, stone paved roads with sidewalks and part of the ancient vaulted sewage system and tombs of the nearby church cemetery of Santa Maria Antica can be admired.
Duration of the guided tour: 2 hours
Difficulty: solely on foot, the tour presents slight difficulties for disabled people.
Do not hesitate to contact tourist guides of Verona for further information or to book an underground tour of Verona.
The art and architecture of the Castelvecchio Museum of Verona is unique.
The Medieval castle and a bridge over the river Adige, which were built to protect the territory and inhabitants of the city, became a Museum in the beginning of the 20th century. In World War II its military use was reestablished which caused serious damage during the bombings of the city towards the end of the war. In the late 1950s, the famous Venetian architect Carlo Scarpa restored the castle using modern elements, but avoiding alteration to the original structure. The architectural result became a creation of harmony between the past and the present.
Guided Tours of Castelvecchio Museum
The guided tour commences with a walk from the Medieval bridge of Castelvecchio to the inner court of the castle.
Within the Museum, on the ground floor, Medieval sculptures from all over the Veronese territory can be admired which date from the early Middle Ages to the 15th century. Thanks to Carlo Scarpa’s specially designed plinths, the effect of natural light and the display of these works of art, each sculpture gained individual character.
The stairway in the main tower, the so called Mastio leads to the upper floor of the Museum to the rich collection of Medieval armatures and weapons and to the art collection of precious gothic paintings on wood, detached frescoes and paintings from the late 15th to 18th centuries by the most important Veronese and Veneto artists including Pisanello, Paolo Veronese, Tiepolo. The displayed works of art in the Museum also include precious artifacts of the Langobard era, Medieval bronze bells and a section of Flemish paintings. The guide will explain the history and architecture of the castle as well as the main paintings and artifacts of the Museum.
Duration of the guided tour: 1-2 hours
Difficulty: Because of steps and stairways present within the Museum, the tour does present difficulties for visitors in a wheelchair.
Entrance fees: the cost of the ticket € 6,00 per person; € 4,50 for groups of minimum 15 persons; free entrance every first Sunday of the month.
Italy’s largest lake basin is the geological result of four big glaciations which followed each other in the past 600,000 years, the last of which took place just 10.000 years ago and formed the amphitheater–like morainic hills in the southern lake districts, thus giving birth to fertile agricultural land.
Lake Garda’s basin is protected from the cold winds by the surrounding mountains which at the height of the lake are an oasis of rich Mediterranean vegetation which include palm, olive, and lemon trees, oleander and vines.
Known ever since the 16th century as the ‘Hortus Europae’, the ‘Garden of Europe’, the Monte Baldo mountain chain which covers the total length of the eastern lake (Province of Verona) has peaks of over 2000 meters height. It is the ideal place to simply go walking or do mountaineering. Numerous panoramic places with breathtaking views over the lake can be reached either on foot or else with the cable car from the town of Malcesine.
The lake shores from Peschiera del Garda to Malcesine cover a distance of about 50 kilometers along which it is possible to admire the beauty of the nature with the blue colors of the water and sky and the green colors of the rich vegetation together with monuments of cultural interest, such as Roman remains, Romanesque churches, castles and Renaissance Villas.
Peschiera del Garda
The town of Peschiera del Garda still maintains its 16th century pentagon shaped defensive architecture, whereas the little town of Lazise is still surrounded by Medieval Ghibellin castellation walls, the nearby towns of Bardolino and Cisano both own unique examples of Romanesque church architecture (San Severo, San Zeno and Santa Maria) and just a little bit further north, the town of Garda is beautifully positioned below the surrounding mountains and hills.
Garda lies within a protected bay below a high and steep guarding rock mountain (‘Ward’ from which the name Garda can etymologically be deducted) and the Monte Luppia mountains which reach Punta San Vigilio. Here the beauty of the Renaissance Villa Guarienti with its Italian Garden has attracted famous visitors like D. H. Lawrence, Sir Winston Churchill and Lady Diana and Prince Charles.
Northern lake Garda
By heading further north along the eastern lake coast, the ‘Chianti wine bottle’ shaped lake becomes more narrow. The Medieval town of Torri del Benaco, follows before reaching the towns of Cassone and Malcesine where the old castle has been visited and admired by the German writer Johann Wolfgang Goethe.
Western side of Lake Garda
The western lake is mainly territory of the province of Brescia and therefor part of Lombardy. Protected by the mountains on the west, lemon tree terraces, so called limonaie can be seen immediately above the lake and below the steep geography of this landscape. Many 19th century aristocratic Villas were built along the coast between the towns of Salò and Gardone, an area which became notorious in World War II history as the Republic of Salò. In Gardone a unique botanical garden and the huge 20th century Villa complex Il Vittoriale of the Italian writer, poet and adventurer Gabriele D’Annunzio can be visited. Across from Salò, lies lake Garda’s biggest Island, the beautiful Isola di Garda, which is still private property of the aristocratic family Borghese-Cavazza.
Northern Italy’s largest Roman Villa, the Grotte di Catullo, can be admired on the enchanting peninsula of Sirmione, where the Roman poet Catullus was born in 87 B.C. and where the Opera singer Maria Callas used to live with her husband Giovan Battista Meneghini in the years of 1950-1959.
Tours: A qualified expert tourist guide will be able to suggest and choose the towns and areas to be visited. Do not hesitate to contact us for additional information or to plan your trip to lake Garda.
Duration: the duration of the guided tour varies according to the requested program.
Valpolicella indicates the name given to north of the city of Verona where notorious wines and pink colored marble have been produced and extracted ever since Roman times.
Today the Valpolicella has become an important destination for visitors who are interested in the cultural and enological aspects of this territory. The Amarone wine is a divine product from this area, in fact this highly praised wine is among the ‘Kings’ of Italian red wines!
A typical guided tour of the Valpolicella can include the visit of an early Romanesque church as well as wine tasting in one of the numerous cellars where it will be possible to learn a lot about the unique procedures of wine production in this particular area. Do not hesitate to contact an Assoguide tourist guide of Verona to undertake a Valpolicella wine tour.
Ever since Roman times, a wine called ‘retico’ has been produced in the Valpolicella valley, which was inhabited even earlier by a people known as the Arusnati which were of Etruscan or Raetic origin and in whose culture divinities were worshipped which were respected and partially adapted by the Romans.
The hill of San Giorgio which still today dominates the geography of the valley became the cult center of the Arusnati people. Throughout the early Middle Ages the religious importance of San Giorgio was maintained and in the 8th century A.D. a chapel was erected here for Liutprand, who was the King of the Longobard people from 712-740 A.D.
Villas and Parish Churches
Precious monuments of a rich cultural past can be visited throughout the Valpolicella valley, such as the early Romanesque churches of San Giorgio in Valpolicella and San Floriano, magnificent Villas of the aristocratic families of Renaissance times which often became important wineries, such as Villa Santa Sofia designed by the famous architect Andrea Palladio or Villa Serego Alighieri belonging to descendants of the famous Tuscan poet Dante Alighieri, Villa Novare in Arbizzano di Negrar, Villa Giona and Villa della Torre where the extraordinary and unusual fireplaces designed by the artist Claudio Ridolfi can be admired.
The towns within the Valpolicella, from Negrar to Marano and from San Pietro In Cariano to Fumane and Sant’Ambrogio are characterized by a hilly landscape of vineyards, cherry and olive trees. But the wine and in particular the Amarone red, is not the only resource of the Valpolicella. The stone industry has been important here ever since Roman times, in fact a precious type of Valpolicella marble in red, pink or cream colors has been generously employed to build the Roman Arena, city gates and to pave the city of Verona.
A selection of the described attractions and a lot more can be visited with an expert guide in this valley favored by the Gods. Do not hesitate to contact us!
Tours: A qualified expert tourist guide will be able to suggest and choose the towns and areas to be visited in Valpolicella including a visit to a cellar, panoramic drive, villa tours, etc. Do not hesitate to contact us for additional information or to plan your trip.
Duration: the duration of the guided tour of Valpolicella varies according to the requested program.
If you pass the A4 highway (the Milan – Venice connection) and you look towards the left at the height of the highway exit Soave-San Bonifacio, you will notice a Medieval fortified town, Soave, which is truly worth paying a visit!
Soave is a Middle Age village surrounded by an intact castellation of the Veronese Scala era. Cansignorio della Scala, XIV century lord of Verona, reconstructed the walls of protection with 24 towers and a panoramic castle on the hilly top of the harmonious landscape which ever since has been surrounded by the vineyards of the delicious white Soave wine.
Soave is in fact also the name of the famous white wine produced in this area.
The historical nucleus has maintained its Roman origin of an important road connection throughout the Middle Ages. In fact during the Roman period and the Longobard era, the so called via Postumia, which connected Genoa with Aquileia, passed through this territory, thus becoming highly strategically important in the 13th and 14th centuries, known as the Veronese Scala era.
But Soave did not have an easy destiny! Being geographically positioned between Milan and Venice, and yet not near enough to Verona governed by the Scala, it was easily and brutally destroyed by Maximilian of Austria during the Venetian domain in the first decade of the 16th century. In fact, in the main square of the little town, Piazza Antenna a wooden column has been erected by the Venetian Republic to remember the heroic gestures of the Soave population during the mentioned destruction. On this square, today’s Via Roma, the 15th century Palazzo Cavalli, built in the typical manner of the Venetian-Gothic style, has been frescoed with today scarcely visible paintings attributed to Giovanni Maria Falconetto, whereas the 1357 Palazzo di Giustizia stands in front of it with its splendid portico, today one of the numerous wine tasting enotecas (wine bar) of the town.
Further north, towards the Porta Aquila gate, the Palazzo del Capitano is a beautiful example of 14th century architecture. The building which used to be the Scala headquarters and then became the administration center of the Venetian Capitani is now the town hall of Soave.
Along the main street numerous wine tasting places, the Enoteche, can be found. Here it is possible to taste many of the best labels of this wine, which is produced with pure Garganega grapes or else in addition is given a minimal percentage of white Trebbiano.
The Castle of Soave, high up on the hilltop of the village is a beautiful example of Medieval architecture consisting of three walled enclosures with a high tower, the so called Mastio and a well at its center.
An expert Assoguide guide will be able to illustrate all the historical, architectural and cultural aspects of Soave, a visit suited not only for groups and school classes but also for individual visitors who are interested in the history of both the wine and food aspect of this delightful little Veronese town.
Duration of the guided tour: 1-2 hours
Difficulty: The tour does not present any specific difficulties, besides entering the castle, which involves walking on uneven and stony surfaces.
Extra entrance fees to the Castle or for wine tasting.