Verona is a small and compact city and lends itself to just strolling and wandering around. We did this on our first afternoon here and had a great time.
We started off at the Piazza delle Erbe - the buzzing heart of the city. This was home to the Forum in Roman times and is still a focal point of the city. It contains the Madonna Verona fountain, the 14th century Gardello Tower and a market, that, while picturesque is a bit of a tourist cliche.
We did enjoy browsing the market stalls - our 4 year old loved it and picked up several tacky but to him valuable souvenirs. He also enjoyed taking off his shoes and joining some Italian children playing in the waters of the fountain.
We next went to the Lamberti Tower. This was completed in 1463 and is the tallest of Verona's towers. The clock tower looms over the square below.
There are 340 steps from the bottom to the very top. You pay 6 Euros to go in - irrespective of whether you use the steps or the lift. My husband, a glutton for punishment, chose the hard route and went up the steps, while my son and I chose the glass walled lift. You do still have to go up 2 flights of steps at the top, but it was a much easier option.
The views are amazing and breathtaking. You can see the rooftops and buildings of the city and the countryside beyond - it really is a feast for the eyes.
We climbed down the tower and sat on the steps of the Loggia del Consiglio in Piaza dei Signori, where we ate delicious ice cream and admired the architecture.
To the north of this square we had a look at the Scaligeri gothic tombs. You get a good view of them from outside the wrought iron 14th century enclosure. We also went into the small, simple and very atmospheric chuch of Santa Maria Antica - the Scaligeri's chapel. It is beautiful and well worth a visit.
We carried on in this direction until we reached the River Adige where we walked along the banks of the river for about 20 minutes.
We walked back to the Piazza Bra - had a coffee and a rest in one of the open-air cafes there, before strolling back up Via Mazzini and looking in the windows of the exclusive shops to get back to our hotel.