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.

BoatsandBridges07The Aquatic equivalent of a bus and yes it is just as crowded in peak hour.

 

 

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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.

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8 thoughts on “Venice – a City of Boats and Bridges

  1. Out of all the places to visit in Italy, Venice has always been at the top, sadly your photos have turned me off somewhat. So many gondala’s, boats, “taxis”, “buses” all lined up and traffic jams, it’s taken the romance of the place away.

    • All of Italy is jammed actually Birgit and it’s part of the package and you get used to it. My next post will show more of the buildings. In comparison with the rest of the continent there is little public transport and crowded roads. Venice was actually better in that you can walk most places.

      • Yeah I know, it was when I was there in 85 and I suspect it would be worse now, it’s all part of being a tourist in a popular country. I remember one of your earliest blogs where you posted a photo of your balcony overlooking one of the canals and you said that was where you had breakfast, that was a “magic”. That’s what I would imagine Venice to be like.

      • You just reminded me that was my last post on the blog from Italy. It was the morning that we had to drag our bags the 300 metres to the train station and catch the train to Milan and after packing and breakfast I took that photo with the iPad and wrote the post while waiting in the hotel for the time to leave. We actually got out of Italy faster than most of our American companions whose plane had “technical difficulties” and had two days in a hotel waiting for a replacement. By then we were in Marseilles.

  2. Great photos of Venice Gary. I would love to revisit there and spend more time exploring there. Tell me because it’s surrounded by water do you find the food etc more expensive?

    • Everything in Venice is very expensive Di, accommodation, food, souvenirs, everything. It is actually a dying town despite the frantic activity that my photos show. The population has dropped from 171,000 to 62,ooo since 1952 with a projected loss of 8000 people every decade from now on. There are empty apartments everywhere and no young people. The workers come in by train from the mainland most people on the streets are tourists and those selling to them. A cup of coffee in St Marks Square costs 9 euros – the most expensive coffee on earth! If you leave the square the price is about a third but you don’t sit and watch the pigeons, tourists and the orchestra play. Venice should still be on your bucket list definitely. If you are on a planned tour you have pre[paid and you don’t notice.

    • My next post will be about the architecture, Rod. The truth is few “ordinary” people live in Venice these days. It is all absentee owners, corporates and tourists. A very aged population as well. It is too expensive for real people, but well worth the visit as a “living museum”.

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