The Rediscovered Charm of Venice Italy

The Rediscovered Charm of Venice Italy

The Rediscovered Charm of Venice Italy


Venice, the capital of northern Italy’s Veneto region, is built on more than 100 small islands in a lagoon in the Adriatic Sea. 

It has no roads, just canals – including the Grand Canal thoroughfare – lined with Renaissance and Gothic palaces. 

The central square, Piazza San Marco, contains St. Mark’s Basilica, which is tiled with Byzantine mosaics, and the Campanile bell tower offering views of the city’s red roofs.

Introduction to Venice

At only 80 miles from Rome, Venice is only about four hours by train. You will see the stunning Rialto Bridge as you depart Florence and marvel at the Vatican on the Rome train. 

The short (2.5-hour) bus ride from Rome (via Milano) to the central train station in Venice takes you through the canals of the Lido, as you watch canalside apartment blocks transform into European islands. 

Arrive at the train station on Sunday, the best day to visit Venice, so you can see its parks and plazas filled with colorful local markets. 

Then take a (1-hour) ferry ride to Murano, a craft island with the famous glassmaking industry. 

For the most part, if you’re a novice, you can just hop on a gondola taxi, or take one of the regional buses that run on a fixed schedule.

What Makes it Magical?

At over eight square miles, Venice is almost as big as its equally vibrant and often more lively (and compact) next-door neighbor, Milan. 

The maze-like city takes on the feel of a village: it’s easy to get lost and find yourself surrounded by water. The “Floating City” attracts over 10 million tourists each year. 

One of the main draws is the canals, which get their distinctive canal-boat look from the buildings around them – many of which have for centuries been converted into hotels and private residences. 

Venetians have their own carvings on the city walls. The Pantheon has enormous marble pillars. Saint Mark’s Basilica is in the center of Venice, Italy. The Grand Canal in Venice. 

The Cathedral’s cloister. Inside the Cathedral of St. Mark.

Why is Venice so Fascinating?

Many people flock to Venice to view the "Waterworks," the grand aqueducts and bridges which cross the lagoon and connect the islands. Others are drawn to the atmospheric churches. 

They are home to the Little Chapel of San Giorgio Maggiore, with a dovecote above its entrance, or the Chapel of St. Anthony of Padua, home to a rare painting of the saint. 

They are hardly the only beauty spots in the city. Renaissance architecture lends a regal air to the Grand Canal, which is lined by gondolas and elegant palazzos. 

The stunning Venetian palaces on the other side of the river, built as a showcase for luxury in the 16th century, still attract tourists in the 21st century. St.

A Brief History of Venice

Venice has long been the symbol of a unique Italian city, as much an attraction as a point of interest. The city has been populated by Greeks, Lombards, Arabs, 

Hungarians, Romans, and Austrians, among others, throughout its history. Venice is also the birthplace of many key architectural styles, including Gothic, Renaissance, and Baroque. 

An unimpressive stronghold, on the other hand, the city was the center of early Christianity and was an important merchant hub. 

Venice is one of the oldest continuously inhabited cities, dating back to the year 7th century BCE. 

The existence of the city was declared a World Heritage Site in 1985, it’s one of Unesco’s ‘Cultural World Heritage Sites in Europe.

A Couple of Stats on the City

1. Venice has more than a million residents, many of whom are commuters from around the region who use a 2.7 km (1.6 mi) subway system. 

2. The last five years have seen the world’s biggest cruise ships, the ‘passenger ships’ largest to date, docking in Venice. Most of these visit during the first half of the year, which tends to bring the city’s many tourists to a standstill. 

3. There are six species of lizard found in Venice, more than anywhere else in Italy, including the sleek Water Dragon, which is related to garter snakes. 

4. The term ‘Italian food’ dates back to the 1500s, with ‘made in Italy’ appearing in English-language cookbooks as early as 1863. 5.

Population

~455,000 Food Venetian coffee – also called Marengo coffee – is brewed with espresso, steamed milk, and sugar. 

While Venice is best known for its many canals, its food scene is remarkably rich and varied. Dining on the Rialto Bridge’s Iruka restaurant is a must-do for anyone visiting the city. 

The Iruka features modern, innovative fare such as beef carpaccio and grasshopper ravioli. 

In Venice’s Trastevere neighborhood, Café Bastia offers simple, authentic food. 

The city is also known for its pasta (la Chiesa, in particular), but it’s the pizza – in which a thin rectangular slice is topped with tomatoes, olive oil, and spices – that’s most highly praised. 

The Leather Barge Dinner Cruise The leather barge, named Anne Marie, is no ordinary boat; it’s an authentic Venetian gondola.

Area

To get the best view of the city, wander the narrow cobblestone streets of the northern part of the city, walk along the San Marcuolo canal or take a Vaporetto (water bus) to the island of Rialto. 

Stroll to St. Mark’s Square to see the Monument to the Fallen, an 18th-century art nouveau structure that recalls the scaffoldings used during the Roman Empire. 

What to do Hike the 1.4-mile-long (2.3 km) Wallacea Trail on the island of Murano for views of the city from above. The route begins at the bridge over the Grand Canal and includes waterfalls, 

Venetian gondolas, and other island sights. Enjoy a city tour by Vaporetto, or see the city’s religious treasures from the viewpoint of the hill at Rialto. 

Alternatively, see the buildings around the Giudecca Canal, such as the St.

Conclusion

If you don’t know what you’re getting yourself into, make sure to talk to your Italian host before you go. 

They will be able to help you navigate the city, and assist you if you get lost. 

In the end, you will not only have a new cultural experience but a much deeper appreciation of Italy’s incredible beauty.


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