Venice is a beautiful city filled with canals instead of roads, having been built in a lagoon on top of 118 small islands in the 5th century.
Originally fleeing from barbarians, ancient Venetians settled on these islands. The buildings in the city are works of art in themselves, designed and built by great artists. The city still floods and is slowly sinking into the sea, which is evident in many of the buildings as anyone can see the water rising up above where it was meant to be.
Visitors can get an idea of how powerful the Marine Republic of Venice was its height, with the amazing piazzas, palaces, and bridges that are scattered throughout the city.
Piazza San Marco
Piazza San Marco, also known as St. Mark’s Square, is a square unlike any other that is surrounded with huge buildings designed with elaborate architecture. Visitors will be awed by the sight of these large buildings, with the water in view just beyond the Basilica.
There are a variety of cafes and shops around the square so visitors can enjoy the views while relaxing. Hordes of pigeons congregate here and are not afraid of people, even landing on those who entice them with food.
St. Mark’s Basilica
St. Mark’s Basilica is located in St. Mark’s Square with large bronze horses greeting visitors at the front. These horses came all the way from Constantinople back in the year 1204. Inside of the basilica, the walls are covered in gold mosaics depicting biblical scenes. The doges, also known as the rulers, used the basilica originally as their own chapel.
The Palazzo Ducale is next to the basilica and used to be home to one of the most powerful governments in all of Europe. The doge lived here and lots of important decisions were made inside of the Higher Council Hall. Large, lavish rooms fill up the space with some great works of art.
The famous Bridge of Sighs is within the palace, which prisoners walked across to get to the prison area from the main part of the building where the court rooms were.