Romeo & Juliet – The True Story

Juliet's purported balcony, in Verona. Beneath it, on the walls, there are love letters.

Fun Facts About Juliet’s House in Verona

Verona, Italy – There’s a curious gullibility that allows some people to believe myths or stories are real. How else can you describe the behavior of visitors to Verona, Italy? Every day hundreds of notes expressing true love are posted in an alleyway leading to what is purported to be Juliet’s home, of Romeo & Juliet fame. (A sign identifies it as the Capuleti house.) It is easy to spot because there are thousands of protestations of loved tacked and taped there. Yes, you’ll be surprised how many people believe the play by Shakespeare is true!

Juliet's house in Verona Italy
Juliet’s house in Verona Italy

The alleyway is more like a tunnel that opens onto a courtyard. It is a tunnel lined with the names of lovers, and they’re beloved. When the paper wasn’t available, these love messages were scrawled on the walls and the gate.

Tourists leaving love notes at Juliet's house
Tourists leaving love notes at Juliet’s house

If you can get through the crowd into the courtyard, you’ll see the very balcony on which Juliet pined for her Romeo. Or, so we are told. A careful reading of the guidebooks reveals that the balcony – which looks like it is from the Middle Ages – was built in 1935. And a legend is born!

Love notes at Juliet's house wall
Love notes at Juliet’s house wall

The story goes that the Capulets and Montagues lived in Verona and had, in their history, a tale of young lovers and suicide. A local storyteller embellished this information. Somehow, Shakespeare, who had never been to Italy even though he wrote about it often, heard the story and “borrowed” it to create his now-famous play.

Fast forward several centuries to find the Verona city fathers realizing the tourism potential of this creative “history” by building the balcony and promoting the legend of star-crossed lovers.

Vandalized gate at Juliet's house in Verona Italy
Vandalized gate at Juliet’s house in Verona Italy

True or not, couples of all ages find their way to Juliet’s balcony, stopping to post notice of their undying love on the walls of the entrance. Something is uplifting about so many pledges of affection fluttering in the breeze.

As I was taking these photos, a young romantic couple asked to borrow my pen. Their names, joined by my ink, were soon added to the layers of colorful paper scraps. Their love, proclaimed for all to see, contributing to the enduring legend of Romeo & Juliet, and – hopefully – a long and loving life together. Sometimes believing is a good thing.

Verona Travel and Tour Packages

Searching for the best Verona hotels, resorts, and affordable flights in the nearby Cities? Check out our list of affordable hotels and resorts via Agoda, or you may also see available Airbnb properties in the city.

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