Losing yourself in the streets of Venice is an experience unequalled anywhere in the world. It is a city entirely built on water, surrounded by a splendid lake. A tourist destination par excellence, it is the site of the well-known Piazza San Marco and the Basilica di San Marco with its five spectacular cupola, covered in scintillating golden mosaics. The bas-reliefs that decorate it – representing the months of the year – are surveyed from above the entry door by the four bronze horses, the Cavalli di Bronzo di Costantinopoli.
The Palazzo Ducale, former site of the Repubblica Serenissima, is a splendid 15th century palace, today the site of major art exhibits; inside one may visit the rooms Sala del Maggior Consiglio, Scala dei Giganti and the prison, reached by crossing the famous Bridge of Sighs. In front of the Palazzo Ducale (Ducal Palace) is the bell tower Campanile di San Marco, an architectural symbol that made the city famous throughout the world. Approximately 100 meters high, today it is an obligatory stop for viewing Venice from a spectacular perspective.
The Basilica della Salute presents a broad octagonal form and marvellous cupolas painted by Titian; Isola di San Giorgio, facing the basin of San Marco, is characterized by its church, inspired by the genius of Palladio. The Ponte di Rialto and the nearby market celebrate ancient Venice immersed in the surreal atmosphere of its fields timeless courts.
The enchantment does not end, even on turning toward the surrounding islands. The Lido of Venice, site of the well known Mostra Internazionale di Arte Cinematografica (International Exhibition of Cinematic Art), offers a beautiful seaside with a wealth of beach-side facilities and splendid buildings in the liberty style. Murano is the site of glass art recognized throughout the world, while Burano excels in that of working marble and is distinguished by its houses with their bright colors. Torcello concludes the tour with the ruins of its long-ago splendor: the church Chiesa di Santa Maria Assunta and the noted Trono di Attila.
Back on land, it is worthwhile to make a visit to the new Parco di San Giuliano, an immense multifunctional green area facing the lake, part of the environmental reclamation project of the city of Mestre.
A few kilometers away, Riviera del Brenta presents its splendid landscape and Palladian villas along the shore.