A Brief Guide to Venice, Italy
Venice is a unique city made up of 121 islets linked by 435 bridges. Most of the monuments and sites can be reached by public transport so getting around is not as difficult as you might first think and the absence of car traffic greatly adds to the atmosphere of the city.
Things to see
St. Marks Basilica
Undoubtedly one of the mightiest Venetian monuments. The church structure is colossal with five great arches supporting five enormous domes. It’s the mosaics that steal the show though covering over 8,000 square metres. The church also houses a wide variety of precious treasures brought to the city from conquests in the Holy Land.
In front of the basilica is the bell tower. A golden statue of Archangel Gabriel hangs on top of this 97 metres high structure.
Probably the city’s most famous building, Doge’s Palace has played three fundamental roles for centuries. The Doge residence, the seat of the Government and the palace of justice.
The Grand Council Chamber with its stunning decorations is breathtaking. The Senate Hall, the hall of the Council of Ten, the Hall of the Compass, Hall of the Inquisitors and the voting hall are also all well worth a look.
Admire the scala dei giganti in the courtyard with its two giant statues of Mars and Neptune or venture inside to see the scala d’oro, a beautiful golden staircase leading to the doge’s apartment.
Doge’s Palace is also home to the prisons, the Chamber of Torment and Giacomo Casanova’s cell.
The most famous of the bridges that cross the grand Canal and one of the most visited tourist attractions in the city.
Thousands of tourists come to Venice to take part in it’s magnificent carnival and show off elaborate costumes. The carnival lasts for a month with shows, balls, plays and concerts organized all over the city.
Venice International Film Festival
Organized by the Biennale di Venezia, the International Film Festival promotes all aspects of international cinema and draws some of the biggest names from the film world each year.
Italian cuisine is world renowned and Venice is no exception. Traditional dishes include pasta and beans and the Venetian Style Liver. Duck is also a popular meat.
Fish and seafood is at the base of Venetian cuisine with dishes ranging from creamed cod to roasted eel.
In Venice the only traditional pasta is a thick and coarse spaghetti called Rigori. Rice is widely used.
Of course a trip to Venice wouldn’t be complete without a ride on the city’s classical Venetian boat the gondola. Although nowadays gondolas are mainly used by tourists they are the perfect way to view the city from the water and make for romantic memories of your visit.