Don't miss this episode for all the details about the Verona Carnival: its history, why gnocchi are tied into Verona's Carnival celebration, what to eat and drink, what else to see in Verona, and how to make a quick day trip to nearby Venice.
If you think of Romeo and Juliet when you think of Verona you'd be right: Juliet's balcony is right in the city center.
Or maybe Verona conjures up all the amazing Veneto wines produced in the area: it's another of Verona's incredible features.
BUT: right now it's CARNIVAL SEASON and you may not know it but Verona is perhaps the oldest Carnival Celebration in all of Italy, if not the world!
It gets started earlier than other Carnival celebrations, in the third week of January with the selection of the new "Papà del Gnocco" and continues on until the Friday before Lent, February 9th in 2024. The highlight is the great parade, with floats and dancers from all over the world who wind their way through the city center.
Verona is a UNESCO World Heritage city in northern Italy’s Veneto region, with a medieval old town built between the meandering Adige River. It’s famous for being the setting of Shakespeare’s "Romeo and Juliet." A 14th-century residence with a tiny balcony overlooking a courtyard is said be “Juliet’s House." The Verona Arena is a huge 1st-century Roman amphitheater, which currently hosts concerts and large-scale opera performances.
In 2024, the Carnival of Verona, traditionally called "Bacanal del Gnoco", will be held for the 494th time with the parade on Friday, the 9th February.
Gnocchi have a long history linked to the Verona Carnival. Back in the 1500s gnocchi in Verona were made with flour and water. Nowadays the best gnocchi are made with potatoes. My recipe is made with a delicious tomato sauce.
Nearby Venice is the place to experience the magnificence of Carnival costumes. If you're staying in Verona it's easy to jump on a train and in just over an hour you're there! Check out my post, The Flavor of Venice, for everything you need to know about this magnificent city.
Have your camera ready: you won't want to miss one single gorgeous costume, nor the beauty of the city itself.