Venice, the ‘Floating City’

By Braden Preston

Located about 200 miles north of Urbino. Venice was built on top of marshy waters, known as the Venetian Lagoon, and has been commonly called “the floating city.”

The Republic of Venice was a major power during both the Middle Ages and the Renaissance. Venice was known for its maritime power, strong center of commerce, and development of beautiful Renaissance art, primarily painting and sculpture.

Travel from Urbino to Venice is best accomplished by train. By taking a bus to Pesaro on the coast of the Adriatic Sea, it is easy to take a series of trains to get to Venice. Depending on what type of train you take, you can expect a one-way trip to be cost 25 to 70 euros.

Upon arriving in Venice, it is almost always more affordable to stay on the mainland, where a large collection of hotels and hostels provides a comfortable stay, with bed and breakfast service in the morning. From the mainland, it is only a 15-minute tram ride to the main isle of Venice, where transportation such as gondolas are available for further travel throughout the channeled city.

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Transportation drops you off at the Grand Canal after crossing the Rialto Bridge. From there, two of the best places to visit are Saint Mark’s Basilica and the Bridge of Sighs, both located in the Plazzo Ducale.

Saint Mark’s Basilica is a landmark and hosts an impressive display of architecture and sculpture. Most notable are the gilded domes that line the front of the building, which are unique to Venice and build upon the existing Gothic architecture of the basilica. Inside the massive building are massive columns, walls decorated to commemorate famous “saints,” as well as a spectacular dome at the center of the church.

Many types of local, Venetian and Roman stone are found only in this area, so it really is a treat to see. There is no cost to see the basilica. However, there is a security checkpoint, so you will have to check your bag and other accessories together.

Another landmark to visit is the Bridge of Sighs. This is a misleading name, as the Bridge of Sighs is actually a tower. It is the tallest building in Venice, and as a result, if you are brave enough to make the elevator-assisted climb, it presents the absolute best views of the beautiful city. Admission is around 8 euros.

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