Venice, together with Rome and Florence, is the most beautiful city in Italy. It lies on the Adriatic coast and is actually more of a large (118) collection of islands than a real city. The most characteristic feature of Venice is that there are no cars and that all traffic takes place over water.
All about Venice
Tourist information Venice
Province: Venice. Region: Veneto. Prefix: +39 041. Postal code: 30100. In Italian: Venezia. Tourist office: APT della Provincia di Venezia – San Marco 2637 – 30124 Venezia (tel. +39 0415298711).
Public transport in a city with hardly any roads or streets and consisting of no more than a large number of islands is of course by water. The vaporetto is the Venetian equivalent of the bus or metro. For tourists who stay a bit longer in the city, it is soon advisable to buy a multi-day public transport ticket. These Tourist Travel Cards have different durations and can save the traveller a lot of money.
Once the city’s most important means of public transport, the graceful gondolas are nowadays used almost exclusively by tourists to have an “authentic” experience.
In 1170, the city was divided into 6 sestieri: Cannaregio, San Polo, Dorsoduro, Santa Croce, San Marco and Castello. These were in turn divided into 70 parishes, a number that Napoleon reduced to 38. The other islands in the lagoon do not belong to a sestiere. There are 177 canals and some 400 bridges in Venice.
The annual film festival is held on the island of Lido.
Venice currently has about 270,000 inhabitants. However, the majority live on the mainland and not on the islands themselves. It is one of the most touristic cities in the world and has become so expensive that there are hardly any original inhabitants of the city left.
The Venice Museum Card is a very good investment for people who stay in the city a little longer. Compared to, for example, the Roma Pass, the card is very cheap (24 Euro) and valid for an extremely long time (6 months). There is also a second pass which includes the most important churches of the city.
The biggest attraction of the city is the water. Along the Grand Canal there are countless magnificent palaces and this canal itself is navigated by the famous picturesque gondolas. The most beautiful square of the city is Piazza San Marco, with the Basilica of the same name.
World famous is the Venetian carnival celebration. During the days that this celebration takes place, it is impossible to find accommodation in the city.
A second important festival is the Biennale, while the annual Venice Film Festival is one of the most prestigious in the world. A more traditional, local festival is the Festa del Redentore.