Valentine’s Day sounds so much better in Italian, La Festa Degli Innamorati.

The customs in Italy go back to the Roman Empire when February 14th was the feast of the goddess Juno. Fast forward. It’s still a celebration for lovers and Baci Perugina are a popular gift. These candies include a poem on a small strip of paper in four languages, a nod to the old traditions when lovers attended poetry readings on this day.

When I think of Valentine’s Day and Italy, Verona and Venice are two of the most romantic cities on this earth. Amore is everywhere roaming the alleyways and waterways or sitting down to an intimate candlelit meal. Verona celebrates with Verona In Love for two days (pictured above). People share chocolates and wine and expressions of love. A proposal in the piazza is the ultimate romantic gesture.

If you want to celebrate Valentine’s Day in Italy, start planning by the fall.