The Museo Civico di Storia Naturale (Museum of Natural History) in Verona has its seat in the Palazzo Pompei, a historical building designed by the architect Sammicheli. The collection consists of mostly natural science objects collected over the centuries by the city of Verona.
Museum of Natural History Verona
Opening hours: 09.00 to 17.00 (Sundays and holidays: 14.00 to 18.00). Closed: Friday. Entrance fee: 4,50 Euro (Reduction: 3 Euro). Free with Verona Card.
Phone: +39 0458079400. Address: Lungadige Porta Vittoria 9 – 37129 Verona. Public transportation: Bus: 11, 12, 13, 51, 73, 90, 92, 98, 510.
History and description
Since 1926 the museum has been housed in the Palazzo Pompei. During World War II, the building was severely damaged and it was not until 1965 that it reopened to the public.
The museum is divided into 5 sections, namely Zoology, Botany, Geology, Paleontology and Prehistory.
The most famous parts of the collection are the fossils found in Bolca and the prehistoric artifacts surfaced near Lake Garda.
Room 1-3: Fossils, Stones and Rocks.
In the first room there are the already mentioned fossils from the area of the mountain village of Bolca, for centuries a site of perfectly preserved flora and fauna from the Eocene (50 million years ago, when there was a shallow sea here). The second and third rooms are dedicated to minerals and rocks respectively.
To reach the next halls one must climb a staircase, along which the different types of famous marble from Verona are exhibited. At the bottom of this staircase one can see an extremely rare and extremely well preserved fossil of a 70 million year old sea turtle.
Rooms 4-11 + 14: Animal species
The following rooms are dedicated to different animal species, while the 8th room is dedicated to the history of Veronese natural science. The insects (the smaller ones) are only dealt with in the 10th room, while the largest animals, starting with the skull of a mammoth found in Quinzano, a short distance from Verona, can be admired in the 14th room.
The 9th room “Water, Earth and Air” shows how the different animal species have adapted to the different types of climates on Earth over the centuries in order to survive.
Rooms 12-13: Geology
The 12th and 13th rooms are dedicated to geology and in particular to the dating of the different layers of stone on earth.
Room 15: Mushrooms
For fossils of the different species of mushrooms that have lived on the earth, one can visit the 15th room.
Room 16-17: Prehistory
The 16th room is dedicated to prehistory in general, while the 17th and final room displays the prehistoric finds from Verona itself in chronological order.
Before getting to the exhibition halls, one enters a large atrium and then a courtyard used for temporary exhibitions.