Meeting time: 10.00 am
(at the bronze Equestrian Statue of Vittorio Emanuele II in pizza Bra, the square where the Arena is)
There is a hidden world three meters (9 feet) below the streets of Verona, made of mosaics of patrician residences, remains of columns of temples, bases of public buildings and ancient structures, which tells us how people lived in the city at the time of the Romans, two thousand years ago. Where you least expect it, under banks, shops, restaurants, squares and churches, our guides will accompany you on an exciting and fascinating journey. You will feel the emotion of walking on the pavement on which chariots ran 21 centuries ago, on the stone slabs of the forum where the market was held in Caesar’s time, you will touch the columns of the temple where the ancient Veronese prayed to their gods, and imagine the banquets that were held in the large rooms of the domus richly decorated with mosaics. Definitely not suitable for claustrophobes.
The Underground Sites
There are numerous underground sites that can be visited during the itinerary. Some are freely accessible, under commercial activities normally open to the public. For others it is necessary to make arrangements with the property according to its needs and availability. For others it is necessary to follow long bureaucratic procedures to get the chance to see them. Among the most interesting sites are:
- The Forum. The square in the centre of every Roman city, the heart of public, social, religious and economic life. Today Piazza delle Erbe corresponds in large part to the surface of the ancient forum. In several places, under restaurants, bars, palaces, you can see the remains of the cobblestones of the ancient forum, and the palaces that stood there: curia, basilica, capitolium.
- Capitolium. The imposing temple of Roman Verona, dedicated to Jupiter, Juno, Minerva. With its size was one side of the forum. The remains of the base and the cryptoporticus (underground corridor) of the capitolium can be seen at various points under a small square, a restaurant, a church and various other buildings on one side of the present Piazza Erbe.
- Domus. The residences of the patrician families. Normally square or rectangular, on one floor, with rooms that opened around a central courtyard (atrium), often richly decorated with mosaic floors and frescoed walls. In the centre of Verona, countless of them have been found, under shops, banks and religious institutes.
There are so many underground archaeological sites in Verona that it would be impossible to think of being able to visit them all with a single itinerary. Opening hours and methods of access to the various archaeological sites vary depending on the days of the week and the availability of the property. The itinerary will propose a selection of sites available on the specific day on which the tour was set, illustrated within the context of Roman Verona, with its superficial landmarks.
For further information please do not hesitate to contact us.