Verona's Palaces (Self Guided), Verona

It's no secret that Italy boasts some of the most remarkable palatial architecture in the world. A good portion of it is found in the incredibly charming city of Verona, the long history of which stretches all the way back to ancient Rome and is reflected in an array of Romanesque and Renaissance gates and bridges, but, most notably, the monumental palaces.

Walking the streets of Verona, one may stumble upon the treasures of the Roman period alongside some well-preserved Medieval and later period palatial edifices, such as:

Palazzo del Podestà – an imposing palace built on top of the Roman ruins; among its illustrious guests, over the centuries, have been the likes of Dante, Giotto and other prominent personalities.

Palazzo della Ragione – a historic palace from the 1190s; home to the city's oldest market yard.

Palazzo Maffei – in place since the 15th century; found beneath are the remains of the ancient Roman Capitoline Hill.

Palazzo Bevilacqua – a majestic palace built in the 1530s; currently serves as the headquarters of the Ippolito Pindemonte state technical institute.

Palazzo dei Diamanti (Diamonds Palace) – an impressive structure of 1495; named for its exterior clad in thousands of white marble, diamond-shaped stones, glittering like diamonds when lit.

If you wish to explore these and other architectural delights of Verona in more detail, and to understand why the city is often referred to as "The Gateway to Italy", take this self-guided walking tour.
How it works: Download the app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" from iTunes App Store or Google Play to your mobile phone or tablet. The app turns your mobile device into a personal tour guide and its built-in GPS navigation functions guide you from one tour stop to next. The app works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

Download The GPSmyCity App

Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for IOS   Download 'GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities' app for Android

Verona's Palaces Map

Guide Name: Verona's Palaces
Guide Location: Italy » Verona (See other walking tours in Verona)
Guide Type: Self-guided Walking Tour (Sightseeing)
# of Attractions: 8
Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 1.6 Km or 1 Miles
Author: Helen
Sight(s) Featured in This Guide:
  • Palazzo del Podestà (Podestà Palace)
  • Palazzo della Ragione (Palace of the Reason)
  • Palazzo Maffei (Maffei Palace)
  • Palazzo Bevilacqua (Bevilacqua Palace)
  • Palazzo dei Diamanti (Diamonds Palace)
  • Palazzo Barbieri (Barbieri Palace)
  • Palazzo della Gran Guardia (Gran Guardia Palace)
  • Palazzo Canossa (Canossa Palace)
1
Palazzo del Podestà (Podestà Palace)

1) Palazzo del Podestà (Podestà Palace)

The Palazzo del Podestà , or government palace, is a medieval palace in Verona, which is located between Piazza dei Signori and the Scaliger Arches . The palace was built by the Scaligeri , on top of the Roman ruins (it is located near the Roman forum, today Piazza delle Erbe ), and was inhabited at the end of the construction by Alberto I della Scala .

Many illustrious men found hospitality in the palace, including prominent personalities such as Dante and Giotto , who according to Giorgio Vasari made some portraits of Cangrande I , which however have not been found. Dante Alighieri , an exile from Florence , was hosted in his second stay in this building: in fact, Piazza dei Signori , which it overlooks, is also called by the Veronese "Piazza Dante", and in the center of the square there is a statue of the poet.

With the fall of the Scala dynasty , the Palace became, during the Republic of Venice , the seat of important magistrates. There were also the offices of the podestà, from which it took its name. In 1404 , they opened a new portal and added above the lion of San Marco adorned in 1533 by Michele Sanmicheli .
Sight description based on wikipedia
2
Palazzo della Ragione (Palace of the Reason)

2) Palazzo della Ragione (Palace of the Reason)

The Palazzo della Ragione is a historic palace in Verona, located between Piazza delle Erbe and Piazza dei Signori.

The construction works of Palazzo della Ragione began in 1193 and after three years they must have already been well advanced if in 1196 in some documents the presence of a Palacium Communis Veronae is mentioned. The palace was presented as a sober, simple and fortified structure. Originally it had to be completed by four corner towers; in addition to the Torre dei Lamberti , there was that of the Chapel or Torrazzo, located in the corner between piazza delle Erbe and the current via Cairoli, and the tower of the Masseria, in the corner between today's via Cairoli and via Dante. For the general architectural balance, another corner tower probably had to be built on the corner between via Dante and piazza dei Signori, of which, however, no documentation remains.

In 1493, when the City Council definitively passed into the Loggia in Piazza dei Signori , the Palazzo, as the seat of the main judicial body, changed its name to Palazzo della Ragione.

Around the end of the 16th century a grain market was placed in the courtyard of the building, over which the Venetian rectors were in control. The famine and the subsequent epidemic of 1576 determined a further change in the functions of the courtyard of Palazzo della Ragione which acquired the name of “Mercato Vecchio” to differentiate itself from the new grain market in Piazza Bra. The Palazzo market was used as a warehouse for the sale of flours for poor families, probably organized in a series of small warehouses with a shop counter on which flour was sold at a controlled price.

Tourists can enter Cortile Mercato vecchio, the oldest market yard in the city, which includes a beautiful Gothic staircase made of pink marble. Individuals may also enjoy various exhibits and/or free concerts held throughout the year.
Sight description based on wikipedia
3
Palazzo Maffei (Maffei Palace)

3) Palazzo Maffei (Maffei Palace)

Palazzo Maffei is a historical palace in Verona, on the north-western side of Piazza delle Erbe. A building existed in the current location in the 15th century, but on 20 December 1469 the nobleman Marcantonio Maffei decided to expand it by adding a third floor. Construction works ended only in 1668.

The three-floor façade of the palace is in Baroque style. It starts at a slightly higher level than the square: seen underneath are the remains of the ancient Roman Capitoline Hill, where the Piazza delle Erbe later was settled.

The first floor has five arcades between tympani. Over each arcade a window with an elegant balcony is placed, separated by Ionic semi-columns decorated by large masks.

The third floor is in the same style as the second, but with smaller windows and fake framed columns. The top of the façade is designed as a balustrade with six statues of divinities: Hercules, Jupiter, Venus, Mercury, Apollo and Minerva. The latter are cut from local marble, with the exception of the Hercules, which is believed to have come from an ancient temple once located on the Roman Capitoline Hill.

The interior is home to a bizarre helicoidal stone staircase, that leads from the underground stores all the way up to the roof.
Sight description based on wikipedia
4
Palazzo Bevilacqua (Bevilacqua Palace)

4) Palazzo Bevilacqua (Bevilacqua Palace)

Located on Corso Cavour is the majestic and beautiful Palazzo Bevilacqua. It was built by architect and engineer Michele Sanmicheli in the 1530s. The fortress is named after an important Italian noble family. Sanmicheli also designed the Palazzo Pompei, the Palazzo Canossa, the Cappella Pellegrini, and the Ponte Nuovo. The building now serves as the headquarters of the state technical institute of Ippolito Pindemonte and hosts art collections from Marco Bevilacqua and Veronese operas.

The building reflects the richness and texture of Bramante design. Large and small bays grace the structure while fluting decorates the keystones, cornices, and arches. As you enter the front doors of the palace, you are greeted by a courtyard that leads to the main living quarters. The ground level of the edifice is stone and is divided by low windows and pillars that feature the busts of Roman warriors. The top floor has a large balcony that is decorated with Greek-style ledges.

Other attractions within walking distance of the Via Palazzo include the Villa InCanto Opera Lirica, the Byblos Art Gallery, the Santi Apostoli, the Monumento a Aleardo Aleardi, the Itaca Gallery, the S. Lorenzo, the Museo d'arte, the Astra, and the Arco dei Gavi.
5
Palazzo dei Diamanti (Diamonds Palace)

5) Palazzo dei Diamanti (Diamonds Palace)

Italy boasts some of the most beautiful palaces in the world and the Palazzo dei Diamanti, or the Palace of Diamonds, follows in this tradition. The impressive structure was designed by Biagio Rosetti and built in 1495. It is very similar in appearance to the fortress in Ferrara that shares the same name. Like many other buildings, the Palazzo suffered extensive damage from World War II and was renovated in 1950.

The building receives it name from the thousands of white marble diamond-shaped stones, of varying sizes, that cover the exterior of the building. The effect that light has on the multi-faceted outer walls does give one the impression that they are looking at diamonds.

The palace includes a portal that has Doric columns on both sides and two mullioned windows on the main floor. Currently, it is the headquarters of AGEC. The building reflects the influence of designer Michele Sanmicheli.

The best way to enjoy the palace is by taking a self-guided walking tour. Other royal residences you can walk to include the Palazzo del Mercato Vecchio, the Palazzo Bevilacqua, the Porta Leoni, the Palazzo dei Diamanti, the Porta Borsari, the Palazzo Canossa, the Palazzo Canossa, and the Ponte Scaligero.
6
Palazzo Barbieri (Barbieri Palace)

6) Palazzo Barbieri (Barbieri Palace)

The Palazzo Barbieri is home to Verona’s city council. The palace is in front of the Piazza Bra where many shops, restaurants, bars, and other important historical buildings are located. Engineer Guiseppe Barbieri built the palace which was intended for military use. Construction began on the yellow-colored stone Neo-Classical structure in 1836 and was completed in 1848. It was originally named the Gran Guardia Nova.

The building was used by the Habsburgs during the war as their base for Austrian troops. Once the war ended, the building became the headquarters for the city government. The structure was damaged during World War II. Reconstruction began in 1945 and was completed in 1950. The renovation added a rounded back to the building as well as making it larger.

Other attractions one can enjoy while visiting the palazzo include the SS. Nazaro e Celso, the Rivoli, the Teatro Filarmonico, the Listòn, the Museo Lapidario, the APT Arena, the Monumento a Vittorio Emanuele II, and the San Luca.

Those wishing to get a quick bite can try the cuisine at Liston 12, Trattoria Malavoglia, L'Oste Scuro, Il Cenacolo, Trattoria Cappuccini, or the Silver Star. The palace is often the site of weddings and is open 24 hours a day Sunday through Saturday.
Sight description based on wikipedia
7
Palazzo della Gran Guardia (Gran Guardia Palace)

7) Palazzo della Gran Guardia (Gran Guardia Palace)

The Palazzo della Gran Guardia is a grand palace that hosts conferences and art exhibitions. It is the former headquarters and registered offices of the city guard. The building was constructed in 1610 and was completed in 1853. The building, which features majestic arches, was designed by Domenico Curtoni. Cutroni’s work shows the influence of fellow designer Michele Sanmicheli. It is located next to the Portoni della Bra on the Piazza Bra, the largest city square in Verona.

Recent exhibitions include the works of Mantega, Mantua, and Padua. The Piazza Bar has many popular cafes, restaurants, and shops that visitors can enjoy. The Verona Arena, an amphitheater that can seat up 22,000 people, is a short distance away.

After viewing the stunning palace, one should also pass through the Via Mazzini to watch the Veronese perform the passeggiata, a ritual leisurely walk through one of Verona’s most elegant shopping avenues.

Whether you are attending a wine tasting event, business seminar, or an exhibition on eighteenth century paintings, the Palazzo della Gran Guardia has something for everyone and will not disappoint. Hotels within walking distance include the Le Camp Spa and Resort, the Verdi, the Europa, the Diamantino, and the Majestic Toscanelli.
Sight description based on wikipedia
8
Palazzo Canossa (Canossa Palace)

8) Palazzo Canossa (Canossa Palace)

The Palazzo Canossa is a stone palace that was designed by Michele Sanmicheli in 1527. Although construction began in the sixteenth century, the building was not completed until the seventeenth century. It is located between the Porta Borsari and Castello Scaligero and is a very popular tourist destination. The structure design reflects a Mannerist style. It is one of four buildings that designer built in the city.

Like many structures in the city, the building suffered some damage during World War II. Although frescoes by artist Gian Battista Tiepolo were lost during the bombing of Verona, many other elements remain.

Visitors will enjoy viewing the doorway that is decorated with marble columns, a portico, framed arched windows, and a gallery that is festooned with mythological creatures. Alexander I of Russia, Napoleon Bonaparte, and Francis I of Austria are just a few of the famous visitors who have graced the palace halls.

The palace is located near many interesting sites. Other attractions near the Palazzo Canossa that you can enjoy include the Arco dei Gavi, the Palazzo Scannagatti, the Basilica SS. Apostoli, the S. Lorenzo, the Museo Civico di Castelvecchio, the Byblos Art Gallery, the Palazzo Bevilacqua, and the Ponte Scaligero.
Sight description based on wikipedia

Walking Tours in Verona, Italy

Create Your Own Walk in Verona

Create Your Own Walk in Verona

Creating your own self-guided walk in Verona is easy and fun. Choose the city attractions that you want to see and a walk route map will be created just for you. You can even set your hotel as the start point of the walk.
Romeo and Juliet Tour

Romeo and Juliet Tour

William Shakespeare's insightful tragedy, Romeo and Juliet, immortalized both the doomed young lovers and its setting, the fair city of Verona. While it's uncertain whether or not Romeo and Juliet were real people, the Montague and Capulet families were Veronese aristocratic families. Relive the classic love story as you walk Verona.

Casa de Giulietta, House of Juliet, is a must-see....  view more

Tour Duration: 2 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 3.9 Km or 2.4 Miles
Verona Introduction Walking Tour

Verona Introduction Walking Tour

The embodiment of a true romance on the Italian soil, the city of Verona has been immortalized by William Shakespeare in his famous "Romeo and Juliet". There is also another, lesser-known play by Shakespeare set in Verona, called “The Two Gentlemen of Verona”. Whilst there's no evidence that the bard had ever set foot in Italy, let alone in this town, Verona's presence in...  view more

Tour Duration: 3 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 4.0 Km or 2.5 Miles
Verona's Museums and Galleries

Verona's Museums and Galleries

Art and history have been the pillars supporting the elegant city of Verona for centuries. Among other things here, you will find the abundance of grand museums and galleries holding unique collections of art and cultural treasures suiting all tastes.

Whatever your interest – ancient or modern art, archaeology, frescoes, Roman inscriptions, natural history, antique furniture, or wine – be...  view more

Tour Duration: 1 Hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.3 Km or 1.4 Miles