Glimpses of Christmas Past: Photos from Verona 2019

Joe and Patricia Gartman have spent the Christmas seasons from 2017 to 2019 in Italy. Here are photos from their time in Verona in 2019

Mercatini on Piazza Signoria

A prosperous modern city of medieval squares, Verona has several historical claims to fame. It’s the town where Romeo and Juliet lived, loved, and, alas (spoiler alert) died.

Christmas lights on Corso Porta Bosari
Lights on Corso Porta Borsari

It’s where Dante, during his exile from Florence, found a friend and patron in Verona’s greatest Lord, Cangrande I della Scala. It’s home to an enormous Roman arena where, instead of watching gladiators battle to the death, you can now watch opera heroines like Tosca and Aida (another spoiler alert) die.

The Christmas star flies from the arena to piazza bra in verona
The Christmas star flies from the arena to Piazza Bra

The arena is also the source of an 80-tonne, steel “comet’s tail” that arches over the lip of the stadium to land as an exploding star in Piazza Bra every Christmas season.

market stalls
Dante watches over the market

In the picturesque squares of central Verona, Christmas markets – mercatini – spring up every Holiday season. Here, you’ll find both tourists and Veronese mingling among wooden booths that offer an endless variety of food and drink, souvenirs, toys, ornaments and gifts.

Christmas pastries and confections in Pasticceria Flego
Christmas pastries and confections in Pasticceria Flego

We enjoyed the splendid tree in ancient Piazza Erbe, and the galaxies of glowing stars and globes that floated above city streets like Corso Porto Borsari and Via Mazzini.

Christmas tree in Piazza Erbe
The impressive Christmas tree in Piazza Erbe

Words by Joe Gartman, Photos by Patricia Gartman.

See more photos of Italy in our archive.