Survival tips for tourists

Here are additional recommendations about food and tourism respectively:

Food

There is not much to say here about Italian cuisine, because its worldwide reputation precedes it everywhere, unrolling a red carpet of fresh tomatoes on a bed of basil leaves with fine herbs falling from the skies in every gourmet’s culinary imagination. Restaurants are simply everywhere. Here are four tips to be mentally prepared to the Italian food culture:

  • When eating in an Italian restaurant, you usually pay around 2€/person for eating there, known as il coperto (“the cover”). Italian restaurants deem it indeed logical to make you pay for using their cutlery and wearing out the seats by sitting on them, so don’t be surprised. However, it has the advantage that you do not need to leave any tip for the waiter/waitress.
  • Whilst speaking about cutlery, the only socially accepted piece of cutlery used to eat pasta is the fork. This however doesn’t oblige you legally not to use a knife and cut the pasta (When in Rome, do as the Romans do, but this is not Rome, this is Verona).
  • When ordering a coffee, do not be surprised by its small size. Instead of eating caffeine powder mixed with some drops of water (called liscio), you can order a lungo (more drops of water), a macchiato (some drops of water and milk foam) or a cappucino (more milk). It is legal to have a cappuccino after noon, but be aware that the more milk you put in your coffee after what can be reasonably considered breakfast, the stranger people will look at you.
  • Keep in mind that butter is considered quite disgusting and unhealthy (unless well hidden, for example in the pasticcini), while olive oil is tasty and healthy (as confirmed by all medical surveys of the last 70 years). Heavy cream (unless in pasticcini) is considered a common ingredient of Italian cuisine only North of the Alps.

Recommendations concerning fermented beverages:

  • L’Accademia, Lungadige Porta Vittoria 33, has the best beers and alcoholic beverages in general. Located very close to the University, it is by far the students’ favourite bar.
  • More generally, if you have a choice between drinking the widespread regular Birra Moretti and drinking water, drink water. The Rossa however, a darker double malt beer, is worth the try.
  • Local products include Amaretto del Garda, Aperol Spritz and grappa.
  • The local wines are Valpolicella, Lugana, Custoza, Bardolino and Soave.

Tourism

Interesting places include:

  • Piazza Bra and the Arena
  • Castel San Pietro (with panorama over the city)
  • Santuario della Madonna di Lourdes (with panorama over the city)
  • Juliet’s balcony
  • Arche scaligere
  • Cattedrale di Verona Santa Maria Matricolata
  • Castelvecchio
  • Ponte Pietra
  • Giardino Giusti
  • Chiesa Santa Anastasia, where you can pray
  • Stadio M. Bentegodi, where you can pray for Hellas Verona to stay in Serie A
  • The Arsenal (not the football club this time, the Austrian Arsenal)
  • Chiesa di S. Fermo
  • Basilica di S. Zeno
  • Torre dei Lamberti
Torre dei Lamberti
Torre dei Lamberti seen from Piazza dei Signori