Canals and Canaletto - be seduced by the city of serenity...
Architectural porn at its best
There aren’t enough superlatives to describe Venice. Using words and phrases such as 'Awe-inspiring’, ‘beautiful’ or ‘wondrous’ seems an injustice to this truly magnificent city unlike any other.
Quite simply, it’s pure architectural porn. Around every corner, architectural delights await. It seems as if the buildings are trying to outdo one another, which anyone with an appreciation for fine buildings and intricate detail, will love.
From the shabby chic allure of the subtle graduation in the bricks of ancient buildings (a result of years of erosion), to exquisitely ornate churches and endless stunning squares and beautiful bridgesthat have withstood the test of time, it all blends together harmoniously.
Remarkably, the buildings remain in relatively good condition, which is an impressive feat given that their foundations remain submerged in water, with the ground floor level of many houses rendered unusable as the canal has taken over.
In Venice keeping up with Joneses requires a big boat and even bigger wallet. Here, it’s not about the car you drive, but the boat you have, which is understandable when you see the vast amount of canals in this magical city. And frankly, it’s the only way to see and be seen.
If it's good enough for the dashing Mr. Clooney and his blushing bride Amal, then it receives top marks in our books.
Visit Tours in Italy to book your own canal cruise.
The way that the gondoliers handle their gondolas is an art form in itself, requiring nerves of steel and upper body strength as they paddle their way through the maze of narrow canals, skillfully pushing off the sides of the walls with their foot as they avoid other gondolas during the busy rush hour.
Boaters on the canal take a more carefree approach to the task at hand, leading one to believe they aren’t paying attention (often using their bums to control the steering handle), but their nonchalance is simply that of someone who has been at the helm of a boat since they could walk.
Lose the map – you never know what you might discover…
Half of the fun of being in Venice is getting lost in the small streets and alleyways, which run along the canal. Snake through the charming squares bursting with life, and enjoy people watching at its best, one of the many pleasures to enjoy.
Streets are poorly marked, so don’t stress too much as you’ll eventually find your way by trial and error. If you’re really struggling, ask a local (which isn’t always as easy as the place is crawling with tourists) and they’ll happily point you in the right direction.
Satisfy your sweet tooth
Whatever you do, ensure that you visit one of the many gelatarias with to-die-for gelato. Quite simply, no one does ice cream better than the Italians and that’s a fact.
For Venice travel guides, visit Foders Travel. Or, try Tours By Locals for a friendly local guide to show you the city's delights.
We've rounded our favourite places to inspire your visit to Italy.