Travel Attractions

Piazza delle Erbe

Piazza delle Erbe

Quick Facts

LOCATION

The Piazza delle Erbe (“Market Square” or “Square of Herbs”),  is a dynamic heart of Verona to this day. Numerous restaurants have their tables and chairs on the streets and in the middle of the square, many market stalls are set up every day, where fruit, vegetables, and, above all, souvenirs are sold. 

It is one of the top 3 attractions and landmarks of Verona today and it attracts thousands of tourists every year.

HISTORY

In Roman times, the Piazza delle Erbe was the central square – the forum Romanum – where the political, economic, and social life of Verona took place.

The origins of the square date back to the 1st century BC.

The design of the square evolved during the Middle Ages and the anarchy that followed the collapse of the Roman Empire, which had rigid urban laws. While its size was reduced by half, it retained its position as the city’s economic and social hub despite its new shape and size.

Piazza Erbe, which literally translates to Herbs Square, was named for the spices market that thrived there. Spices were the most common item for sale, however, there was a lot of haggling.

Still in place is a stone pedestal marked with standard city measurements, which were used to ensure that products were measured accurately before they were sold.

 

Verona City Sightseeing Walking Tour of Must-See Sites with Local Guide

WHAT YOU CAN SEE AT THE SQUARE

In addition to the Baroque Palazzo Maffei and the Mazzanti House with their exquisite murals within, the area is bordered by several beautiful buildings. The 1370-constructed Torre del Gardello, a clock tower erected by the Scaliger Cansignorio, rises right adjacent to the Palazzo Maffei.

Clock faces were added to the bell tower in 1421 to provide inhabitants with more information than just the number of hours in the day. Venetians created the Colona di San Marco (a high column) in front of their palace to symbolize Venice’s power.

Located in the center of the piazza is Tribuna, a 16th-century elevated canopy that afforded the market supervisor a clear view over the area. Every person who was found guilty of any crime was chained to the Tribuna and forced to face the public’s contempt. The Tribuna also read out new legislation and notices.

Fontana di Madonna Verona, a lovely market fountain, features a Madonna sculpture with a banner celebrating Verona’s beauty in the middle. The bronze sculpture of Veronese poet Roberto Tiberio Barbarani stands right next to it (1872-1945).

Located on the southwest side of the plaza, directly across from the Torre dei Lamberti and Palazzo del Commune, the Casa dei Mercanti offers the greatest perspective of Verona. Originally built in 1301 by the Scaligians, the house of merchants is still a prominent feature on the square.

HOW TO GET TO THE PIAZZA DELLE ERBE?

The location of Piazza delle Herbe is very central and cannot be missed, but if you are coming from other areas, the bus station at P.za Viviani 10 is the best place to arrive closest to the house. Buses number 70, 96, and 97 will get you close to the square.

Top hotels near Piazza delle Erbe

Hotel Gabbia D'Oro

Hotel Gabbia D’Oro

The 5-star Hotel Gabbia D’Oro offers comfort and convenience whether you’re on business or holiday in Verona. The hotel offers a wide range of amenities and perks to ensure you have a great time. Property Location With a stay at...

Hotel Antica Porta Leona, SPA

Hotel Antica Porta Leona & SPA

With a stay at Hotel Antica Porta Leona & SPA, you’ll be centrally located in Verona, steps from Porta Leoni and Biblioteca Civica. This 4-star hotel is within close proximity of San Fermo Maggiore and Juliet’s House. Property Location With...

Due Torri Hotel

Due Torri Hotel

Set in a prime location of Verona, Due Torri Hotel puts everything the city has to offer just outside your doorstep. Offering a variety of facilities and services, the hotel provides all you need for a good night's sleep.

Travel info about Verona and Italy

Visit Italy: 14 things you need to know

Visit Italy: 14 things you need to know

Italy has it all: rich history, spectacular cultural heritage, great food, wonderful site seeing experiences, numerous world known landmarks, friendly people, affordable accommodation and easy transport from place to place.

Interesting facts about Piazza delle Erbe

Here are some interesting facts about this amazing historic landmark:

  • While tourists occupy the square during the day, in the evening hours locals come in large numbers and use the piazza as a promenade.
  • The central fountain has a statue of Madonna, instead of Mary, representing a noblewoman instead of a religious figure.
  • A mysterious whale rib is hung on the arch passage from the direction of Piazza dei Signori. It was not confirmed what was the purpose of this unusual ‘decoration’.

Safe travels!

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Last Updated on November 11, 2021 by Tours Editor @ gotravelyourself.com