The great thing about arriving at a destination early is the fact that you have almost the entire day ahead of you. The potential downside to that is that you might be far too early to check in and hence can’t change or get comfy once you arrive.
Thankfully, despite our early arrival into Verona, our rooms at the Hotel Milano Spa were ready for check in (such a fantastic location from the hotel – you can literally see the Arena sat in the rooftop hot tub).
Pretty much as soon as we walked out of the hotel, I knew the folks at srprs.me had gotten it right!
I don’t know if it was the sunshine, the fact that you walked right out of your hotel and stumbled onto the 2,000 year old Roman Arena or just the endless gelato possibilities but Verona was a very easy Italian favourite for me.
Like I mentioned in my previous post, this first day as much as I wanted to see all the sights, I really wanted to spend at least half of the day actually relaxing. I wanted a properly holiday!
With that in mind, we lazily ambled through the streets of Verona, mentally making notes of where to visit for lunch/dinner (breakfast would be at the hotel) and where to stop for gelato.
We didn’t get very far! Distracted by post-lunch gelato, we stopped off at the Arena, people watching in Piazza Bra…
…followed by even more gelato and people-watching.
Eventually, we made our way back to the hotel where we ordered up some prosecco, aperol spritz (and for some reason, sparkling water – which was mostly left un-drunk) and just relaxed in the Italian sunshine! It was amazing!!!
I promise we did do so much more in the days that followed but I honestly can’t remember when last I had a lazy afternoon like this. (As you might have gleaned from Twitter, I was also in birthday mode so I was so intend on just relaxing).
Eventually, almost as wrinkled as a prune from spending hours in the hot tub, we popped back to our rooms for a freshen up and hit the streets in search of dinner.
One of the guests at the hotel had recommended a restaurant they went to the night before so we made our way through the transformed streets of Verona to La Cantine Del 15 Ristorante. (*That’s the other thing about booking a surprise trip – you wing things like this a lot more and rely more on personal recommendations which is actually a much better way to find the best spots to eat in the city).
We started off with a little smoked tuna (compliments of the chef and, despite its appearance, very tasty) before going for carbonara for my primo piatti (first course) and steak for my second course.
FYI, the guy at the hotel was totally right – the food here was delicious! Every single bit of it. (Lloyd confirmed the same too). If you’re ever in Verona, it’s definitely worth popping in. (Just checked the TripAdvisor reviews now and it’s like one of the top 10 – out of 951 – restaurants in Verona).
Totally pleased as punch with dinner, we decided to pop by what eventually became our favourite gelato place for a couple of helping of that delicious stuff!
Verona was definitely shaping up to be quite the fantastic Italian getaway.