Venice – a City of Boats and Bridges

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The city of Venice is made up of 118 small islands separated by canals and linked by bridges. It is located in the marshy Venetian Lagoon which stretches along the shoreline, between the mouths of the Po and the Piav Rivers. The city and the lagoon are listed as a World Heritage Site.

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Many tourists arrive in gigantic tour ships towed through the shallows by tug boats

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Gondalas are now mostly used for the tourist trade. We had an excellent look through many of the narrow canals and stopped to be serenaded and drink champagne to celebrate the occasion.

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Only one Bridge is covered, the Bridge of Tears which leads to the court room where many a Ventian was sentence to death.

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The local equivalent of a taxi took us for a cruise of the main canals.

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The local garbage boats are limited in their pickup schedule by the tides as are some of the “buses”.  At high tide they cannot get under the low bridges and have wait for the water to drop.

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BoatsandBridges05Behind the boat stop is Venice’s main link with the outside world is via the train station in the background which travels via bridge over the lagoon.

There are many other islands in the lagoon that are not part of Venice because they are not linked by bridge to the original 118 Islands.

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Traffic jam in the main canal.

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Deliveries by boat. The only artificial Island in the lagoon is a huge car park and docking area where daily hundreds of semi trailers are unload onto delivery boats like this one.

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Another boatload of workers head home.

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A wave from a taxi driver for our Tour Director Barbara.

A Last Look at Florence and Tuscany

Tuscany from the top of the Tower

Tuscany seen from the top of a tower. This image, made from six frames, covers about 270 degrees which explains why the horizon is curved.

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In an earlier post, more than two months ago while still in Italy, I commented on the relative size of David’s hands and was reminded of this by an artist friend, roddyewrecka, recently. Here is the proof, if you can raise your gaze to the hands!

This is one of two replicas of the David. This one overlooks the city from a large car park, the other is in the main square, while the original is in The Gallery of the Fine Arts.

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The Rape of the Sabine Women by Giambologna  1579 -1583_DSC8044

The Medici’s patronised contemporary artists and architects and collected great art works of antiquity.

Centuries of weathering and pollution of works and acts of vandalism of produce damage on these masterpieces.

In the factory above an original is repaired and cloned. The copy goes back outside while the original is kept safe in a museum or gallery.

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If you want a souvenir you can pretend it is great art.

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The architecture is impressive 

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Cars are tiny and in this case electric – check out the charger.

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A spot of local colour