Anyhow, back to wonderful Riva. There are some people out there who take the view that holidays are all about getting involved, being super-active, and seeing every possible sight within a hundred mile radius.
The most famous family in the history of Verona - other than the Capulets and Montagues, of course - was the Della Scala, or Scaligero family. This dynasty ruled Verona in the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries, earning a reputation for ruthlessness but also as important patrons of the arts. The name, in each of its versions, means something like 'of the staircase' and the family's emblem, which you'll see around town, is a ladder. Even nowadays in Italy the adjective 'scaligero' is still used to describe Verona and its citizens. The Scaligero family tombs are an important stop on a Verona sightseeing tour. Called the Arche Scaligere, the memorials are grouped outside the little church of Santa Maria Antica, just off Piazza dei Signori. Look out for the ladder emblem and also for the dog iconography - several of the family were known by ferocious canine names, from Mastino (Mastiff) to Cangrande (Big Dog). Two of the equestrian statues are copies; you can see the originals at the Castevecchio (see below).