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Basilica di San Zeno Maggiore, Verona

4.7
#3 of 36 in Historic Sites in Verona
Religious Site Church
The Basilica di San Zeno is a minor basilica of Verona, Northern Italy. Its fame rests partly on its architecture and partly upon the tradition that its crypt was the place of the marriage of Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet. It stands adjacent to a Benedictine abbey, both dedicated to St Zeno of Verona.HistorySt. Zeno died in 380. According to legend, at a site above his tomb along the Via Gallica, the first small church was erected by Theodoric the Great, king of the Ostrogoths. Erection of the present basilica and associated monastery began in the 9th century, when Bishop Ratoldus and King Pepin of Italy attended the translation of the saint's relics into the new church. This edifice was damaged or destroyed by a Magyar invasion in the early 10th-century, at which time Zeno's body was moved to the Cathedral of Santa Maria Matricolare: on May 21, 921, it was returned to its original site in the crypt of the present church. In 967, a new Romanesque edifice was built by Bishop Raterius, with the patronage of Otto I, Holy Roman Emperor.On January 3, 1117, the church, along with most of the city, was damaged by an earthquake; the church was restored and enlarged in 1138. Work was completed in 1398 with the reconstruction of the roof and of the Gothic-style apse.
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Where to stay in Verona

The historical center of Verona is packed with famous luxury hotels, which offer all the modern conveniences but also tend to be very expensive and require booking months in advance. If you're a spontaneous traveler visiting on a budget and staying in the central area is not one of your musts, consider checking into a small B&B or family-operated farm just outside the city. Verona's picturesque countryside offers less expensive but comfortable lodgings with good food and friendly hosts, all within a short drive from the bustling city center.
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4.7
  • Don't get me wrong, I liked visiting the Verona Duomo, but I visually enjoyed this basilica more. The basilica's entrance was the first notable difference with its large bas-relief wall tiles surround...  more »
  • Located a little bit out of the beaten tourist tracks of Verona you will find Basilica of San Zeno, said to be one of the most beautiful and better preserved examples of Romanesque architecture in the...  more »
  • I had the pleasure to attend the coral evening with Lassus Choir in San Zeno Basilicia Verona on 27/05/17. It was a wonderful occasion this is a very special German Choir and the setting was spectacul...  more »
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  • Very cool basilica. Verona Card compatible, and just far enough away that 90% of the tourists don't make it.
  • This church is definitely worth a visit. The cloister is beautiful, the altarpiece is pretty extraordinary, and the raised chancellery is very unusual (although a lot later).
  • Beautiful cathedral. Worth a visit.
  • I visited on a pretty rainy day but even then the building looked extraordinary.
  • Very beautiful basilica with a lovely garden and surrounding area. The inside provides some great history and allows you to visit the lower levels.