Venice: The Floating City in Italy That is Every Traveler’s Dream
Whether it be the backdrop of a spy mystery tale or that of a romantic Bollywood movie, Venice has captured the imagination of the world since forever. A city of bridges, a city of canals, the floating city – Venice has been known by many names but has evoked a single emotion – fascination. From tourists to architecture enthusiasts to city planners, Venice has grabbed the attention of countless people over the decades.
A must on all travel checklists, Venice is the shining jewel of the Italian tourism industry. Want to know more about this city of more than a hundred islands? Let’s have a look.
When Is the Best Time to Visit Venice?
To experience the best of Venice, plan a trip during Spring (April to early June). Fall (September and October), is also a good time to visit this capital city of northern Italy. Try and avoid visiting Venice in the summer months from late June till August, as the weather gets too hot and humid, and the city is packed with a swarm of tourists.
Means of Transportation
Water-based transport is the main mode of transportation in Venice. You can get on a ‘Vaporetto’, which is a water bus, that goes through the Grand Canal, the main city, and then the many islands. It is best if you get yourself a travel card, instead of buying single tickets, as the former is much more cost-effective than the latter. ‘Traghetti’ or public gondolas are another means of transportation that crosses the Grand Canal at fixed points. Water taxis are also available for conveyance. In order to reach the city from the airport, you can take a 20-minute bus ride, or get into a water taxi.
Main Tourist Attractions in Venice
When in Venice, every other corner will be a tourist’s delight. However, some classic tourist attractions cannot be missed at any cost. Here are a few of them:
1. The Doge’s Palace
Earlier established as the Seat of Government, or the Palace of Justice, The Doge’s Palace is easily one of the most popular spots among tourists. It is located on the bank of the Grand Canal. Its Venetian Gothic architecture will draw your admiration and sense of wonder in a moment’s time.
2. Saint Mark’s Basilica
Saint Mark’s Basilica is also known as Basilica Di San Marco and is situated at St. Mark’s Square. This church dates back to the 9th century and is a treasure-trove of Venice’s wealth as a center of military power, as well as architectural finesse. Its décor is a mix of Byzantine, Gothic, and Renaissance art and mosaic.
3. The Grand Canal
The Grand Canal is one of the most significant tourist attractions in Venice. The canal is spread through the city with a number of aesthetic bridges built across it at several points. Both sides of the canal present you with a breathtaking, picturesque view of castles and palaces with historical architecture. A Gondola Ride on the Grand Canal at sunset is not to be missed.
4. The Bridge of Sighs
The Bridge of Sighs was built in 1600 and was designed by Antonio Contino. It connects the Doge’s Palace to the New Prison. It is said that the bridge is named so because the prisoners would often ‘sigh’ at the view of Venice from the bridge, as they made their way to their execution. While the story may or may not be true, the view from atop the bridge remains spectacular.
5. Piazza San Marco
The Piazza San Marco is the busiest public center in the floating city of Venice. It is situated right in front of the St. Mark’s Basilica and the Doge’s Palace and is separated by the latter through a small waterway. It is a landmark spot for tourists and locals alike with its cafes, government buildings, and offices.
Apart from these, the city of islands has a number of beautiful churches, bridges, museums and heritage buildings. This UNESCO World Heritage Site is a dream for travelers who are on the lookout for an amalgamation of natural beauty, culture, history, and architecture.