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Verona - what is open on Sunday?

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Sep 30th, 2012, 03:48 AM
  #1
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Verona - what is open on Sunday?

Hello fellow Fodorites!

Bikerscott and I are planning a return visit to Italy next June/July. We will base in Bologna and want to visit Modena, Parma, Verona, maybe Padua...

We are wondering what to do on Sunday. Thinking most towns will be closed on Sunday...will Verona have more stores and restaurants open seeing that it is a bit touristy? Any other suggestions?

Thank you!
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Sep 30th, 2012, 04:04 AM
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I wouldn't count on stores or restaurants being open, unless you want touristy ones. Verona is a business city. Good restaurants that are open on Sunday will morel likely be open for lunch.

However, I'm not sure what you mean that "most towns will be closed on Sundays." Churches, monuments and museums in all the places you mention are generally open to visitors on Sundays, and an up-to-date guidebook will give you the hours. If you haven't been to Ravenna, all of its mosaic sights are open on Sunday. If you are mainly interested in shopping and eating, you'll have to rest on Sundays!

Most stores are closed in Parma on Thursday afternoons, and many of its sights are only open in the morning, and some of its important churches close for the long lunch hour. Bologna also has a Thursday closure. I don't know which afternoon Modena closes it shops , and Verona is also likely to have an afternoon closing one day during the week.
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Sep 30th, 2012, 04:07 AM
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There will certainly be some food places open near the arena in Verona since there are opera performances on Sunday nights. But I would be picky about some of those food places since the offerings can be mediocre.
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Sep 30th, 2012, 04:09 AM
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Padova is also likely to have an afternoon closure, and if you were planning to go to its food market, you should check the hours.

I don't know if Bikerscott is a motorcyclist only, but much of the area is very bicycle friendly, and it is popular activity to rent bicycles and ride through the Po delta, generally around Comacchio. You can also rent bicycles in Ferrara, where most museums, churches and monuments and a few restaurants should be open for lunch.
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Sep 30th, 2012, 04:10 AM
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As a follow on...I'm not sure what you mean by "touristy" since we are all tourists in a way. Not trying to be snarky; we've found restaurants in Verona, as an example, that catered to a more so-called "local" crowd and some had better food and were memorable (for where they were if nothing else) and some not.

Have a good visit; the city is certainly worth visiting at least once IMO and for more than Juliette's supposed balcony.
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Sep 30th, 2012, 04:27 AM
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There may be some clothing stores closed on Sunday, but other than that I doubt you'd notice much difference from any other day. The entire historic center of Verona is wonderful, full of beautiful architecture and interesting streets and churches. All of that will be available on a Sunday. There will be tons of restaurants open. I don't know about specific small off the beaten path upscale restaurants but you certainly will have a variety of places to choose from.

I do think of the places you mention, Verona will be the most lively. I've been to all the towns you mention - plus Ferrara and Mantua which I highly recommend. The one that seemed the least lively, even on a weekday, was Parma. While most other cities seem to have churches/museums/stores close for one to two hours mid day, everything in Parma seemed to be closed from just after noon till around four pm.

My photos of all these places: http://www.pbase.com/annforcier/italy__the_veneto

http://www.pbase.com/annforcier/italy_emilia_romagna
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Sep 30th, 2012, 04:34 AM
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I know what Jamikins means by "touristy," especially when it comes to Verona, which is one of the very few Italian destination with certified, phony tourist "traps" having to do with Juliet balconies and Romeo's tomb. It's all fake, trying to mislead people into thinking there is some historic connection to Shakespeare's play.

But it is also true that there is a real difference in commercial rhythm to a town like Padova or Bologna and places in the middle of the Chianti or along the Amalfi coast, or Venice or the Lakes. There the tourist economy is so important, they have lost the tradition of the Italian Sunday closure. Those towns are touristy more than they are traditionally Italian in daily life.

It's true that we're all tourists in some sense, but some people travel mainly to observe foreign cultures in action, and it is helpful, I think, to know that if you go to some places with spectacular attractions, you can enjoy the spectacular attractions, but you'll not see much in the way of foreign culture (or you'll see a canned, commercialized cliche version to meet tourist expectations). Some people have no interest in anything but the spectacular attractions, but for those that do, it's a distinction worth making.
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Sep 30th, 2012, 05:11 AM
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Thanks for all the replies!

Let me explain further...we basically travel on our stomachs and love to sit and absorb the atmosphere over a nice lunch and wine. WE have found that many places are traditionally 'closed' on Sundays, and I do understand why. We prefer to visit when it's lively and there are people about and at least some places open, rather than everything shut up tight.

I meant that I have found towns that have more popular touristy attractions tend to have more things open on sundays...I hope that makes more sense! Verona seems to have more well known sites. So looking at a map and places to visit I just wanted confirmation that Verona is likely to have some places open...also we have no interest in the fake sights in Verona, but want to see the roman sites and absorb the vibe of what I hear is a great town.

I do know about afternoon closures, thanks for some dates in some towns.

We went to Ravenna last year so want to find somewhere new.

Appreciate all your comments!!
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Sep 30th, 2012, 06:50 AM
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I don't wish to get into any sort of pissing contest on this thread, especially about the inherent value or authenticity of someone's travel experiences.

I can tell you this much: there will be outside activity in Verona at the time of your visit if only because there will be an opera performance that night in the arena which will be attended by thousands (the tickets are already on sale for next July).

There'll be foreign culture in action and a lot of it will be focused on catering to those opera attendees, many of whom are actually Italians!!!
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Sep 30th, 2012, 07:04 AM
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Monday is the day all the museums close (I try to avoid Mondays in Italy).

Do take time to include
Faenza (for the world class pottery museum)
Monselice for the old town in the walls and its position.
the other 4 walled cities in the area, which includes Ferrara (hire a bike) Soave, Cittadella and the other one
The Euganian hills for the walking and wine.

For food, Mrs Bilbo scans TA for hours, while I generally walk around at 7:30 and go into the noisest place going which is normally packed with locals. I think I'm ahead at the moment.
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Sep 30th, 2012, 07:21 AM
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Dukey1 - I have no idea why you think i would be having a pissing contest! My only question is whether there are things open in Verona on a Sunday so I am certainly not trying to start anything - I thought it was a fairly simple question!

Thanks for all the responses I am taking down all your notes!!
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Sep 30th, 2012, 08:10 AM
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Mr Bilbo - would 'the other one' be Castelfranco di Veneto?
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Sep 30th, 2012, 09:56 AM
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Actually I came up with Montagnana and then what about Este?
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Sep 30th, 2012, 10:25 AM
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Jamikins, you misunderstood my post. I do not want to engage in a pissing contest with Lorettajung
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Sep 30th, 2012, 10:30 AM
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Oh haha sorry Dukey1!!!

Thanks for all the feedback!! We have lots of time to plan but I love doing all the research!
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Sep 30th, 2012, 12:54 PM
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I was recently in Verona on a Sunday in September. In the historic center there were many restaurants open, as well as a variety of shops, and sites. If you want to visit the Roman Arena and will not be attending a performance, you should do so by mid-afternoon, as the arena will close to visitors a few hours before a performance.
I had a lovely lunch at Ristorante Entoca Cangrande, wonderful antipasti and pastas. There is outdoor seating on a quiet pedestrian street and its just steps away from the Arena.
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Sep 30th, 2012, 01:03 PM
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Maxima, thank you so much!! Exactly what I was hoping to hear!!
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Oct 1st, 2012, 12:53 PM
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I was in Verona on a Sunday this time last year, and it was very busy. The major tourist sites were open, restaurants and gelaterias were doing a huge business. Retail was spotty. Some high end retail opened or reopened from 3 to 7 on the assumption that everyone would be too busy eating before 3 to do any shopping.

The museum is extremely fine, and the Basilica of San Zeno, despite exterior renovations, is absolutely not to be missed, though it is an active and busy worship community so you will not be able to visit when mass is taking place.
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Oct 1st, 2012, 01:17 PM
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Thanks so much, it sounds like a good place for Sunday!
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Oct 1st, 2012, 02:30 PM
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>>I was in Verona on a Sunday this time last year, and it was very busy.<<

I agree. Was there on a Sunday in October last year. Wasn't really looking much at retail, but just about everything in the way of attractions, restaurants, and a street market were open. Beautiful city.
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