Venice is a city in northern Italy, it is the capital of the region Veneto.
It's a unique city of 116 islands, ancient history and endless waterways, it attracts
a steady stream of tourists from all corners of the world to view its inspiring architecture and to navigate its mystical canals.
The City is built on the water. It stands on forests of piles, installed centuries ago to support the City. Venice has been defended
by its lagoon throughout the ages and forever its destiny will be linked to water.
Many ships arrived from the sea, loaded with spices, precious silk fabrics and treasures
that made the City that much more beautiful.
The most famous painters of every era immortalized that magnificence with their colours.
Vivaldi and Goldoni handed down to us its eighteenth century soul.
Venice is divided into six districts, called �Sestieri�: Sestiere de San Marco, the heart of the city,
Sestiere de Castello, Sestiere de Cannareggio (because it used to be the area of marshland and reeds),
Sestiere de Dorsoduro which includes the island of la Giudecca and the whole of the southern section of the city,
and el Sestiere de San Polo and Santa Croce.
Venice is famous for its typical and original art, which can be admired all over the city in the monuments and museums,
starting with Piazza San Marco, the heart of Venice, where the most important events in the city take place;
The center of animation in Venice is St. Mark's Square and the Piazzetta, which leads from the square to the sea.
On the square are St. Mark's Church: the Gothic Doges' Palace (14th-15th cent.),
from which the Bridge of Sighs leads to the former prisons;
The gondola is the typical Venetian boat and the most famous type of marine transportation in the world.
It has become the symbol of Venice while it has also become more of a tourist attraction than an actual way of getting around
Saint Mark's Basilica is a monument made unique by both its wealth of history and the magnificence of its fa�ade and interior. In essence, it is a splendid workshop, where, through the centuries, worked great Italian and European artists.
Its distinguishing Byzantine character appears particularly on the great mosaics illustrating St. Marco's tales, as well as the scenes of the Old and New Testament.
The Palazzo Ducale, or Doge�s Palace, was the seat of the government of Venice for centuries. As well as being the home of the Doge (the elected ruler of Venice) it was the venue for its law courts, its civil administration and bureaucracy and � until its relocation across the Bridge of Sighs � the city jail.
The system of elected doges was as singular as everything else about this very singular city, and lasted for 1000 years, from the election of Paolo Lucio Anafesto in 697AD to the deposing of Ludovico Nanin in 1789.
The Serene Republic was just that, a republic, and guarded fiercely against hereditary rule, though as we will see that principle was increasingly shaped to the advantage of the ruling classes. A vast bureaucracy of elected civil servants, committees and councils was presided over by the only figure elected for life, the doge