Venice's Islands

Venice itself is islands in a lagoon.   The islands I am going to detail refer to other key islands with some distance.  They are Murano, Bruano and Torcello.  Each has its own characteristics.

Murano,the closest one from Venice.  One can start the 10-minute boat trip from Fondamenta Nuove.  The island is famous for its glass work.  You can see signs of glass factory everywhere on the island.  We window-shopped.  Most of them look identical and not artistic.  This orchestra the only one look unique.

Basilica dei Santi Maria e Donato was built in 8th century.  The most striking piece of art is Vergine Orante, a splendid mosaics of Virgin Mary.  The mosaics floor is beautiful.  Don't miss it out. 

Burano can be reached from Fondamenta Nuove or from Murano Faro stop. It is the prettiest island in the lagoon. All houses are painted in bright colours. No one next to each other has the same colour.  It cheers up the residents and visitors.  Burano is famous for lace.

Time passed quick.  We did not have any time to visit Torcello, the furthest of the three from Venice.  It is a barren and romantic place.  I visited the island in 2001, was walking alone and admired the beautiful Basilica.


Venice's Landmarks

Venice, a charming city, always remains on my mind. The Grand Canal and Gondola are unique. One can find churches, beautiful architecture of different styles elsewhere but can never find a place with a big canal dotted with palaces, beautiful and torne buildings originated in different periods.  Here you can see the golden palace Ca' D'oro, the palace of an art institute next to the Accademia Bridge, the area of Rialto Bridge, Santa Croce near the railway station, etc.  Of course, you won't miss the sight of a gondola.

Basilica San Marco, Campanile, Torre dell'Orologio, Palazzo Ducale

No one will object if these key buildings are the landmarks for Venice.  Here is the most popular place for tourists from all over the world.  It is the place for the carnival, the centre and a must see place for anyone visiting Venice.  My companion led me to a number of off beaten tracks.  One of them is the opposite shore from the San Marco Square.  We could view the square from far, an overview with ferries running through the canal. 

Many tourists should have taken similar shots of this from the San Marco Square.  But not many of them bother about the church opposite.  It is San Giorgio, a church named after a saint who killed a dragon.  The church is a masterpiece from Palladio. It exempts from Byzantine characters. The architect believed that white was the colour most appealing to God. On a sunny day one can ascend to the bell tower for an extraordinary panorama across Venice and the lagoon.  It costs 3 Euro.  It's a good value if compare to the 8 Euro charge for the campanile at the San Marco Square.

Santa Maria della Salute
I was not aware of this church during my last two visits.  When preparing this third visit, I saw a photo showing it in the night.  It's charming, like a pearl at the shore shining in the night.  I wanted to take a night shot.  But we were not very lucky with the weather or not nearby in the night.  No harm, next trip.  If you will visit Venice, it's worth walking the opposite shore to enjoy the romance and fabulous night scene.  This shot was taken from the ferry.  I bought a poster of Venice in Paris years ago.  It is framed and still hung in our living room.  It's this church painted by Monet.

4 Bridges
Not every bridge is always quoted in travel books.  The oldest and most famous is the Rialto Bridge.  Signages in Venice pointing to Rialto, San Marco, Railway Station and Accademia.  The four bridges are the main ones connecting different regions.  The newest is Ponta delle Constitutione.  It connects Cannaregio and Piazza Roma which is a major transportation hub carrying tourists and workers from the land to the lagoon.