This is not just another ancient site from the Roman period, or even an ordinary Roman arena. Verona's Arena is considered the well-preserved Roman amphitheater - the third largest in the world. Even if there is no performance, it is recommended to enter and be impressed by it from the inside as well.
As one of the most preserved Roman amphitheaters there, and thanks to its excellent acoustics, the Arena is still used for concerts, operas and classical concerts known all over the world. In July and August, each year there is the Verona Opera Festival, one of the largest summer events in Europe.
The entrance is a double archway called the Portoni di Bra. This arch remains as a remnant of the 14th century city walls. Here you will reach a large triangular piazza surrounded by large buildings from a variety of historical periods. At the entrance you will see the Lystone, a wide 18th-century sidewalk made of fine red marble, brought here from the quarries in the mountains near Verona.
The dimensions of the elliptical structure are 110 by 140 meters. In the past it was even larger, but during an earthquake in 1183, parts of it were muted and it is the size that remains. Many other stones were taken from here to build churches in the Middle Ages and other periods.
The orchestra area was restored in 1913 and has since been used for concerts during the summer season. Every year, Verdi's opera "Aida," whose plot takes place in ancient Egypt, is performed here.
The Arena, which was then built outside the walls of the city, is built of red bricks or a type of pink-white marble.
An earthquake that occurred in 1117 destroyed the outer arches of the Arena, leaving only a meager remnant that can be seen on the northwestern edge of the amphitheater. The ruins that surrounded it were used in the Middle Ages as a huge source for stone construction. From here stones were taken to new buildings and misery dominated the glorious amphitheater of yesteryear. It was only during the Renaissance that the central part of the Arena was restored.
In the 18th century, the Arena was again used for theater and entertainment. In 1913 the opera Aida by Verdi was performed for the first time. Since this premiere, the performance of this opera here has become a tradition of many years.
And in general - every summer there are spectacular opera performances to which viewers from all over the world flock to watch and listen to the Italian operas in an authentic, powerful, great place with excellent acoustics.
Tickets at the last minute can be bought, if left, on the morning of the show at the Arena ticket office. They occupy the back of the Arena and without a reserved place. The price is only 12 euros.