Every city has a deciding factor that usually comes to the mind when you talk or read about the city. For Venice off course it is the Grand Canal. Just imagine a whole city where a network of canals runs through. For us who have had always to be satisfied with hackneyed lifestyle in a traffic jammed city, Venice is off course a welcome breather. The snaking water of the canal lined up with age old heritage properties, markets, shops, and palaces is something straight out of Shakespeare’s Merchant of Venice. The Canal is approximately 2 miles and at the Southern end of San Marco it is 350 feet wide.This was the high end district with luxury quarters. Houses were larger here and grand.Traditionally speaking this section was all for Renaissance grandeur. Merchants would often find this district advantageous to them. The best way to explore the Canyon is off course the waterbuses. Don’t hesitate. Go take a ride of a lifetime.
As you are making your way through the network of Canals high Renaissance architecture greets you from every corner. Palazzo Corner della Ca’ Grande with its Ionic and Corinthian columns was built in the 16th century by Jacopo Sansovino.Today it is a prefecture. You pass through the Ponte dell’Accademia. This was originally a small iron bridge and was later replaced by a wooden bridge. By the time you will reach Palazzo Dario you are already awed at the many magic that the city is unfolding. The facede of this beautiful Renaissance structure dates back to the 1488. The Galleria dell’Accademia on the Canal is the seat of high art. It has some of the most priceless 15th and 18 century paintings. Next in line is the Ca Grimani built by Sanmicheli in the year 1556.High Ionian columns in the exterior façade tells of the typical Renaissance styled architecture.
Go back further in time to the Byzantine time. Ca’ Barzizza with its Byzantine architecture is one of the very few houses from that era that is preserved. The Rialto Bridge is almost synonymous with the Canal. It was originally built to link the two sides of the canal at the thriving commercial center at that point of time. But that bridge is not the one that you are viewing presently. It was made in 1576 after many wooden structures had collapsed unable to take the weight of the structure. The Pescheria on the Grand Canal dates back to 1907. This market place is frequented by tourists at all times.
The Vaporetto takes you through the Palazzo Salviati, a 19th century building with exquisite mosaic work done. The Salviati glasswork are known for their craftsmanship throughout Venice. The Palazzo da’ Mula, Campo San Vio and the church of St George passes by you slowly.The Vaporetto will stop atleast in four other places so that you can take in the beauty and artistic genius of Venice. Ca’ Rezzonico, San Tomà, Sant’Angelo stop and the last stop San Silvestro are the other stops here.
No matter what you do in Venice everything is loosely or largely associated with culture and art. Even when you are walking through the Piazza San Marco or going through the intricate detailing of the Doge’s Palace, it’s always culture.