A city home to iconic waterways and a myriad of architectural masterpieces, it’s no surprise that Venice is the most visited destination in Italy. With over 5 million visitors a year, Venice is the perfect place to lose yourself in Italian art and romance. The city shines under the European sun, and the waters sparkle.
The art and architecture is a huge part of Venice, and you can see influences of the Renaissance throughout the city – both on water and land. For art enthusiasts, visiting Venice’s galleries is a must. Home to Venice’s largest collection of art, you’ll see pieces by Max Ernst, Picasso, Miró and many more. Explorers, writers, and poets took inspiration from the beauty of Venice – names like Marco Polo, Titian, Canaletto, and Vivaldi.
Today, Venice is a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and there have been restrictions and rules enforced to maintain its beauty and preserve its history. Venice itself is built on 118 small islands which can all be accessed by gondolas on the canals, and bridges on land. It’s complex – but that’s what makes it charming. Central to it all is the Piazza San Marco, also known as St Mark’s Square. This square is an assembly of social, religious, and political spaces – and one that is always a good reference point if you’ve lost your bearings.
Venice is charming year-round, but a particularly busy time is the period before Lent – around the end of February. For around 10 days, the city comes alive with live music, shows and balls. It’s a great time to experience the buzz of Venice, and for avid photographers – both professional and amateaur – it’s a great opportunity to get some spectacular shots, as costumes, outfits, and design are elaborate.
While we would recommend wandering around Venice, taking in the sights and charm of Italy’s most popular city at your own pace, there are plenty of tours to do. Most famous being a gondola ride through Venice’s waterways. A gondola is the name of the boat – a Venetian design that is typically Venice. The people who steer the boats are called gondoliers, and they carefully maneuver the boat through the narrow channels and delicate bridges.