Venice – The Sinking City

I finally got the time to write this long-awaited post on my trip to Venice. After exploring the marvels of one of the most beautiful cities in the world, I booked my flight, packed my things and – off to a new adventure in the sinking city.

Accommodation in Venice

My plans are usually very, very detailed for each trip I take. In most of the cases, I’m not wrong about the accommodation I choose. But in this case, I can with pleasure say, that the small hotel we’ve stayed in while in Venice was one of the coziest, best hotels I’ve visited.

It was located in the Cannaregio area of Venice, right in the midst of all those narrow streets that Venice is known for. The best part about it was the breakfast in the room. With a magnificent view of one of Venice’s canals, it was the perfect place to wake up in.

Getting Around

There’s one thing I can recommend for your visit to Venice – buy one of their small boat tickets to get around. You’ll probably come accross many hop-on-hop-off tours that take you to the islands, but you can actually purchase a daily boat ticket and get to any location you want in Venice, for pretty much the same price the companies offer.

The beauty of Venice is best seen if you travel by foot, but their only method of public transport, the vaporetto, is pretty much a life-saver for when you need to cross one of the big canals. Bridges do exist and connect all canals, but when it comes to the big canals, the distance between bridges is ridiculously big.

The tickets for the vaporetto are quite cheap. We purchased a one-day ticket to begin with, which cost us only $20 per person and took us – well, everywhere! You can use any of the boats with the ticket and visit the popular islands of Venice: Burano, Murano, and Torcello, or explore all parts of Venice.

I personally did not visit Torcello, but did spend a short time on the remaining two of the islands. Burano is the island of glass, one where you can find many glass shops and factories, and buy some nice souvenirs.

Compared to Burano, Murano had a completely different story to tell. The beauty of the small island lies in its architecture. Even if you have seen one of those popular pictures travelers post of Murano, the experience is so much stronger when you actually find yourself in the midst of that architectural beauty.

Exploring Venice

In addition to those islands that I’ve already mentioned, there are several other things that I chose as my favorite after my trip in Venice.

Now, I can’t possibly go through all the details of where I’ve been and what I’ve seen. Considering how thrilled I am to have been in Venice and how in love I am in the city, it would take me thousands of blog posts to share all my affections and memories.

So, let’s cut to the chase – what are the best things to see when you visit Venice. Here are some of my favorite things:

1. Basilica di Santa Maria Della Salute

You probably thought that you’ll find the square or the popular basilica first on this list, but for me, this was the very best thing Venice had to offer.

The basilica is located right across the Grand Canal and can be seen from the actual center of Venice – San Marco square. It has one of the most enlightening building looks I’ve ever seen.

Featuring a baroque design, this basilica was built back in 1687. It might not be the most popular or biggest church in Italy, maybe not even in Venice, but it is by far one of the most pleasant ones for the eye.

2. San Marco

The square of Venice is called San Marco and it is definitely a magnificent site to visit. The basilica located on the square is a sublime architectural piece that has been there since 1902. The facade is decorated with the most delicate artwork and made richer with the lifelike sculptures and ornate details.

3. Ponte di Rialto

Ponte di Rialto isn’t just grand – it is a masterpiece. It literally spans the Grand Canal and connects two districts of Venice – San Marco and San Polo. It’s a very popular attraction to tourists and, at the same time, a pedestrian thoroughfare that will get you from one side to the other.

Believe it or not, this was originally a bridge made of wood. It was the first bridge that connected these two districts until, in 1524 – it collapsed. After this, the city of Venice decided to build an ornate stone bridge that will stand for many years to come.

They did a pretty great thing with it. Its design and detail are symmetrical and magical. On it, you can find many souvenirs.

4. Ponte Dei Sospiri

Right next to Doge’s Palace is the most interesting bridge of them all – Il Ponte dei Sospiri. The bridge of sighs might be small, much smaller than I thought, but it is by far the most emotional bridge in Venice.

How can a bridge be emotional, you might ask?

It’s not so much the bridge as it is the story about it. The story behind it is breathtaking. This is the bridge that was part of a prison facility, the last spot where prisoners looked at the beauty of Venice before they were executed.

That’s why it is the bridge of sighs – it represents the final sigh of a condemned prisoner before they were brought to a place where they’ll never see the outside again.

Now, in order to get to this bridge, you must go through Doge’s Palace. Any of the tickets that allow you to enter the Palace should give you an easy access to this memorable bridge.

5. The Streets of Venice

Don’t let my short list of bridges and sights mislead you – Venice has so many bridges and such a rich architecture, all of which has an amazing story to tell. I believe that the best impression a visitor can have in Venice is achieved when they walk those narrow, never-ending streets lined up with shops and souvenirs.

Wandering those Venice streets trying to find the narrowest one was my absolute favorite. Why? Because there’s literally no spot in the world that has so much uniquness to offer!

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