Venice is the city of canals, bridges and gondolas. And with so many fabulous sights to enjoy, Venice in its entirety is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This unique place is an absolute must-see!
St. Mark’s Square is the city’s central square, where most sights are located. In addition to the sights, the impressive square is also famous for its pigeons, of which there used to be 20,000. But since it is not permitted to feed the pigeons on St. Mark’s Square, this number has fortunately decreased considerably. Interesting fact: since Venice is so low lying, St. Mark’s Square floods regularly during high tide. So bring your rain boots with you if you want to keep your feet dry!
The stately Palazzo Ducale – Doge’s Palace – with its gigantic bell towers on St. Mark’s Square is hard to miss. The palace was built in the 9th century and was originally the palace of the doge, the head of state of Venice. The governmental and judicial headquarters of the city were also located here. The palace houses not only the doge’s residence, but also the Hall of the Great Council and interrogation rooms.
The Bridge of Sighs connects the Doge’s Palace and the prison. In the past, prisoners crossed this bridge on their way to the prison, where Galileo Galilei and Casanova were also once imprisoned. From the bridge, the prisoners could see their last glimpse of daylight before being thrown into the dark dungeons. The name Bridge of Sighs refers to the sigh breathed by these prisoners during this walk. Interestingly, there is also a positive aspect to this bridge: kiss your beloved while sailing under the bridge in a gondola and your love will last forever.
St. Mark’s Basilica was built in honour of Saint Mark, the patron saint of Venice. The basilica has five domes and countless towers and arches. The facade is adorned with a chariot and Venetian lion, the symbol of Saint Mark. Those who are interested in mosaics should not miss the basilica, whose interior is famous for the beautiful mosaics in the domes.
Do you still have time left after seeing all the sights of Venice? Take a day trip to the island of Murano. Murano is famous for the unique Venetian glass that is blown here. How exactly Murano glass is blown is a secret. Rumour has it that glassblowers wanting to leave Murano were severely punished. Most of the studios are located on Fondamenta dei Vetrai (Glassmakers’ Embankment). Murano is the perfect place to find an original souvenir for those at home – and for yourself, of course!