Venice is nothing short of a engineering marvel. The city is one of a kind and this is undoubtedly felt when within the city. So much of the cities shines and is forced upon you through its engineering and design that it changes the way you think of cities in general. Down to its authentic and robust aesthetic to its original infrastructure, this beautiful city will delight any traveler.
For those who dont know, Venice is the city of bridges. There are no streets or cars in Venice, only at the very beginning of the city. All the roads are canals and all the vehicles are a boats. There is nothing like it in the world. The taxis are boats, the ambulances are boats, the buses are boats, even amazon packages are delivered by boat. Just to come and see the rivers and boats in action or experience an aqua-bus is worth the trip alone.
Venice is the capital of the Vento region of Italy. The autonomous region of Vento only became part of Italy in 1866 after the third Italian War of Independence. The history and importance of Venice stretches far into the past and has been renowned for its architecture, artwork, and beauty.
If you were wondering how this “floating city” sits on top of the water this is a combination of the city sitting on Islands and a foundation of tress trunks, some of which have been there for 1200 years.
Fact: There are 425 licenses for gondolier sailers which requires 400 hours of training to receive. It is the most sought after job in all of Venice.
All the houses start at water level. Its quite impressive to see, while riding in an aque-bus, the water level of the canals just a few inches below the door to a apartment building. Its whole infrastructure is build on top of water. That is the allure of the city.
Transportation throughout the city will be one of three ways; bus, taxi, or walking. The city is not incredibly big but because of the canals and buildings that must be navigated not easy to walk from one place to another. It is recommend buying an all day pass for the aqua-bus. Navigating by bus-boat is surprisingly simple and the transit route maps are easy to understand.
Besides walking around in awe, my first stop in Venice was Saint Mark’s Basilica. It is worth a visit, but unless you buy the extended ticket you wont see much with the free pass. The free pass was just a quick U-turn inside the Basilica and then we were out again.
Tip: No backpacks are allowed in the building and they will stop you. There is a free backpack locker area for the Basilica, but its not next to the entrance so you will need to step out of line to get to it and its not a locker but more of a drop-off place, so remove important items from your bag.
Besides the Basilica on the main island there is the Rialto Bridge, Bridge of Sighs, Doge’s Palace, St. Mark’s Square and Campanile, and San Marco. The main island is not extremely big so all these landmarks can be seen in a day, each one as impressive as the last, especially when you take into account how close to the water you are.
Traveling to the nearby islands requires a special tickets and ferries only leave at designated times so plan ahead if you want to travel to one of the other islands. If you take a ferry you can get to the adjacent islands of Murano or Lido. I heard good things about Lido, but unfortunately due to time constraints could not go. Murano, on the other hand, I had time to go to. The small town is known for their glass-making skills and supposedly houses the bones of a slain dragon.
The island of Burano is much farther than Lido and Murano. The town is very charming, but there is not much to see here except the colorful town itself. Its a good place to have an Italian coffee or dessert and rest your legs.
As a sugar connoisseur and probably soon to be diabetic Iv noticed trends in deserts for different cultures. For example, the Spaniards enjoy desserts that are not overly sweet. American deserts are on the far side of the sugar spectrum and are very sweet, and as an American found the desserts of Spain unfulfilling. Luckily, if you like your desserts sweet, the Italians will satisfy your sweet tooth.
Venice might have landmarks to see but I believe the city is much more than these stationary structures. Theres something to experience here that you cant find anywhere else in Europe. It is an experience taking a boat to get around the city like some sort of water based metro, walking around and seeing amazon packages getting delivered off a boat, or hearing an ambulance and seeing it skip across the water. Venice, unlike any European city iv been to, it is an experience. It is an experience you need to go feel as soon as possible because with the way we are treating the planet who knows how long this vulnerable city will be here.