Info Venice

Islands of the Venetian Lagoon by Marco Secchi

If you are seeking the pure essence of La Serenissima, the lagoon has many bewildering wonders to experience.

The Venetian lagoon is a 55,000-hectare stretch of water, the largest wetland in Italy and one of the most important coastal ecosystems in the Mediterranean. The environmental and its heritage was recognized by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site, and it envelops various hidden gems and islands that a lucky few can explore.

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These are some of the islands you can enjoy in the Venetian Lagoon:

Burano, laces and fishing tourism

All visitors of Burano remain intrigued by the many colours and the colorful houses that are reflected into the green waters of channels, by the leaning bell tower, by the tranquility and the calmness with which the elderly ladies embroider original Burano lace by their tombolo (or lace pillow), while they are laughing and chatting in squares among them. It seems to be in paradise. Children who dart freely with their bicycles, balconies with multicolored flowers, fishermen who put up fresh fish from their traditional boats.



Although in lacemaking in Burano is the main craftsmanship attraction, enchanting is also the "lume glass working": a technique born in the nearby island of Murano, but also widespread in the other islands of the Venetian Lagoon. Burano is not an exception to this and it is quite easy to come across some little shops where you can admire this type of Murano glass processing. Real glass factories in miniature, such as the shop located in Fondamenta Giudecca 132, inside a typical and small green house.

If you search for a place to eat like a local, Burano is very famous for its fish dishes, the most famous of which is the "risotto de gò": the broth in which the rice is cooked and creamed is extracted from the "gò" a fish typical of the Venice lagoon, known in English under the name of "goby". The dishes of the Burano's cuisine are served in restaurants, who despite being known from the point of view of the quality of the service, in the kitchen maintain the genuineness of a typical old "trattoria buranella" (a Burano's tavern) and where you can still eat delicious fresh fish.

Pellestrina island

The ideal time to come is the summer, when the inhabitants of Pellestrina organize the festival of the “Madonna dell’Apparizione” (Our Lady of the Apparition), and visit the beautiful sanctuary that was built in 1717 on the site where the Virgin Mary appeared to a young boy and advised him to pray for the salvation of Venice. It was the time when the city was besieged by the Turks, and the following day, the Venetians won the Battle against their opposers.

Torcello Island

Torcello is an enchanting island, populated by only 10 Venetians, and is mostly known for “Attila’s Throne” — an ancient stone chair that probably belonged to the Podestà and had nothing to do with the king of the Huns — The Devil’s Bridge, the Cathedral of Santa Maria Assunta, and the Locanda Cipriani.

But a real treat that is for the few is the Casa Museo Andrich, where artists Lucio Andrich and Clementina De Luca lived. Andrich was an Italian painter, engraver, sculptor and mosaicist, who collaborated with his wife Clementina, producing a body of work of about 1,300 art pieces. Their enchanting property is also an educational farm, where you can learn about their cultivation techniques, the wildlife populating the lagoon and the history of its formation.

Torcello was an inspiration for creative minds such as Ernest Hemingway, who spent some time on the island during the late forties writing "Across the River and Into the Trees." The same poetic flair can be captured by the legacy of Andrich’s creations.

Sant'Erasmo island

Sant'Erasmo is an island that is part of the Northern Venetian Lagoon, it's sparsely inhabited but second in size after Venice.

It is one of the few islands in the Lagoon of Venice where cars are present, even if only the residents can drive them because there isn't any way for a tourist to bring his car on the island.

Sant'Erasmo is located in the exact center between Burano, Murano and Punta Sabbioni and its position gives it a fertile land so as to be the Venetian Lagoon's agricultural island, rich in orchards and vineyards: very famous are the violet artichoke of Sant'Erasmo.

The island of Sant'Erasmo is reachable from the "Venice Fondamente Nove", "Treporti Ricevitoria" or "Murano Faro"'s water-bus stop through the ACTV public ferry line or with a private transfer.

Santa Cristina Island

The lagoon has more private islands than you would expect. But some of these are abandoned, or have been acquired by big corporations and transformed into luxury hotels, such as San Clemente Palace Kempinski. But there also private islands that have been transformed into eco-resorts, where the sumptuousness of being sheltered in nature is the epitome of haute villégiature.

That is the case with the ravishing Santa Cristina Island, that has been transformed by the Austrian couple Rene and Sandra Deutsch into a sublime retreat for exclusive guests, who can wander around the stupendous gardens, populated by peacocks and various bird species.

This exclusive sanctuary of well-being, that is accessible only by private boat, is fully sustainable. Isola Santa Cristina produces its own fresh drinking water, with wells that go hundreds of meters deep, harnessing cutting-edge technology to clean the water. The hotel’s vegetable patch is curated by local agronomists and an ancient fishing farm has been reprised thanks to the collaboration with the Ca’ Foscari University of Venice.

La Certosa island

The island of La Certosa is a a green oasis in the Venetian lagoon.

La Certosa Island spreads across 22 hectares and is considered a green oasis of the Venetian lagoon. The humungous park is characterized by thickets of white, black and ash poplars, alternating with non-native tree and shrub species.

In ancient times it was called the Isola di Sant'Andrea del Lido or also Isola di San Bruno in honor of the founder of the Carthusian Order. The charter house consisted of two islands separated by a long canal and in 1424 the Church of Sant’ Andrea Apostolo, that was built by Pietro Lombardo.

Here you can admire masterpieces by Titian, Palma il Giovane, Bartolomeo Vivarini and Tintoretto. Two Doges were buried in this church and several weddings are still celebrated with bucolic flair, as wild goats roam about.

Isola del Lazzaretto Nuovo

The Isola del Lazzaretto Nuovo (New Quarantine) should not be mistaken with the Lazzaretto Vecchio (Old Quarantine), which in 1423 was a plague hospital and today is the headquarters of the Venice Film Festival's Virtual Reality installations. The Lazzaretto Nuovo was built later, in 1468, for incoming ships and cargo, where crews and goods were inspected for signs of sickness.

The island can be visited between April and October, only on Saturdays and Sundays. You will see the chief building on the island, the “Tezon Grande,” that used to store the goods from quarantined ships. Under the regime of Napoleon, and later the Austrians, the Lazzaretto Nuovo was used as the lagoon’s military defense system, known as “Le Fortificazioni,” that today is used as an exhibition space.



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San Francesco del Deserto Island

The San Francesco del Deserto Island was anciently called Isola delle Due Vigne (Island of the Two Vineyards) and was owned by the Venetian nobleman Jacopo Michiel. It changed name when in 1233 he donated the island to the Franciscan Order, after Saint Francis resided on the island for a short time. The suffix “of the Desert” (del Deserto) was added later, when the island was abandoned for a brief period due to the plague.

You may visit San Francesco del Deserto with a private boat that will leave you on a small dock, that leads to the entrance of the monastery. Once you arrive to the friary and ring the bell, you will be greeted by a monk who will guide you across the holy island. This is an opportunity to plunge into the historical-religious culture of Sant Francesco del Deserto, as well as to enjoy the peace and tranquility that the place offers.

La Poveglia

This seven hectare uninhabited island is not open to the public, but with a private boat you can go on a pic-picnic excursion, and most importantly on a haunting adventure. La Poveglia — that was known in antiquity as Popilia, for the abundance of popular trees — is famous for its ghost stories.

In the 1700s it became a quarantine for the Bubonic plague, and during the twentieth century the island was said to be populated by phantoms — 160,000 bodies had been dumped on the island which is why halff the soil is human ash. In 1922 a building was erected on La Poveglia. The archives officially claim it was a retirement home for the elderly, but testimonies have a different version to the story: apparently it was used as an asylum. It closed down in 1946, but in the meantime there are legends of a sadist psychiatrist who lobotomized his patients, who were haunted by the souls of those who died during the plague. The doctor reportedly threw himself off the bell tower, claiming to be driven mad by the apparitions of his victims.

In the meantime some visitors have declared to have walked past objects that were standing on side of the ruined building, and as they returned later during the day were placed in a completely different area. Hence, La Poveglia is a must-see for all aspiring ghostbusters!

Venetian Traditional Carnival Food by Marco Secchi

Where to taste and how to cook them

Are you coming to Venice during Carnival? Then you cannot visit the city during the long celebrations of Carnival and don't try the traditional Venetian Carnival food and may you even want to make these pastries at your own place once you’re back.

The Venetian must-to-eat sweets are: the so-called "frittella", a couple of "castagnole" and some "galani".

Don’t feel guilty if you can’t stop eating frittelle once in Venice, is part of the trip in this period of the year!

Here a small list of our favourite places where you can taste these sweets:


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1. Nonno Colussi

Since 1956 Nonno Colussi has been making his desserts (including the famous "fugassa", the Venetian focaccia which is a sort of Pandoro thousand times more genuine and good, soft like a feather pillow), exclusively in the open laboratory in his shop. The sweets of the "grandfather" Colussi are very popular and, according to the Venetians, this is one of the best pastry shops in Venice.

Calle Lunga San Barnaba, Dorsoduro 2867A

2. Pasticceria Tonolo

Since 1886 one of the most famous and renowned pastry shops in the city. Frequented by Venetians, and of course tourists (recommended by locals), is always assaulted not only for the delicacy of pastries and brioche but also for the low price and for the generous portions of desserts.

Crosera San Pantalon, Dorsoduro 3764.

3. Laboratorio Castelli

One of the last real pastry laboratories still existing in Venice. For over 30 years, clients have been delighted with: Venetian bars, pastry shops, restaurants and hotels. Bake daily brioche, frolle, pies, muffins, cakes, pizzas, pretzels and much more. Mythical (and almost unobtainable in the Venetian bars where nowadays many use to buy frozen ones) its brioches with custard and chantilly cream as well as its Venetian pancakes, prepared both classic and with zabaglione, and / or with delicate chantilly cream.

San Marco 3994

4. Rosa Salva

A name, a guarantee. The legendary Ermenegildo Rosa Salva produced the fritoe in the old way, with the buso (with hole), baked daily are then distributed in the various Rosa Salva stores in Venice and Mestre. The classic version, with raisins and pine nuts, supports the production of those with custard and zabaione.

San Marco 950. Calle Fubera.

5. Pasticceria Marchini

The activity of the Vio Family has been present in Venice for over 40 years. Since 1974 he has been producing and selling his collection of high quality traditional sweets: the "Antichi Golosessi Venexiani". Wide selection of desserts and savories for aperitifs and lunch breaks.

RECIPES


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Here you can find the basic recepies for cooking at home these 3 tipycal sweets of Carnival. Enjoy and let us know how good you made them!

FRITTELLE

If you’ve been to Venice before during Carnival, you’ll probably have already tasted the frittelle, in all their variations, in fact, there are cream frittelle, frittelle with raisin, frittelle with zabaglione or chocolate but we are sure you don’t know the recipe yet.

250gr flour

30gr sugar

1 glass of milk

30gr pine nuts

Yeast

1 egg

30 gr raisin

Lemon peel

Peanut seed oil for frying

In a large bowl mix the yeast with a glass of warm milk and 50gr of flour, then let it rest for a while, at least until the mixture has doubled its volume.

In the main time, allow the raisins to soak in warm water for a full 30 minutes.

Take the mixture you’ve prepared earlier, and add the rest of the flour, an egg, 30gr of sugar, then the raisins, the lemon peel, and the pine nuts.

Work the mixture adding a pinch of salt, then use a spoon to make small balls you’ll fry in a pan full of hot oil. Before serving, sprinkle a bit of icing sugar, above the frittelle.

GALANI, A TYPICAL VENETIAN CARNIVAL PASTRY

Venice is not the only city in Italy where you can taste galani, but they probably have a different name. The galani recipe seems to date back to the Roman Empire, which means that they were born before the Venetian frittelle. Let’ see the recipe.

500gr flour

100gr sugar

40gr butter

2 eggs

Lemon peel

1 spoon of rum

A pinch of salt

Some icing sugar to decorate

Making galani it’s easy. First of all, mix all the ingredients into a bowl and let them rest for a couple of hours, then stretch it until it becomes very thin. Now it’s time to give the galani their typical shape, using a cutting wheel.

Fry them all making a small cut on the top of each galano, then serve them with some icing sugar.

CASTAGNOLE

Castagnole are a very typical Venetian Carnival food and the recipe is really easy. Let’s start with the ingredients you’ll need.

400g flour

50g sugar

80g butter

2 eggs

A pinch of salt

Baking powder with added vanilla flavoring

Lemon peel

Oil for frying

Icing sugar

Soften the butter and put it in a bowl with the two eggs and the 50gr of sugar. Stir everything and add the flour, the lemon peel, the yeast and a pinch of salt. Then make some small balls from the mixture, helping yourself with a spoon, and put them in a pan full of hot oil.

Let them fry and then serve them with some icing sugar.

A visit to Burano by Marco Secchi

Any international magazines include Burano among the top 10 most colorful cities in the world

The colorful houses, the fishermen, the lace, the desserts and the fish dishes. The island of Burano leaves enchanted, it is a small pearl in the middle of the lagoon

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The inhabitants of Altino to escape the barbarian invasions, took refuge in the various islands of the lagoon, giving these the names of the six gates of the city: Murano, Mazzorbo, Burano, Torcello, Ammiana and Costanziaco, derived precisely from the names of the doors of Altino.

Since the time of the Republic of Venice, Burano with its modest population of about 8,000 people, was an island of poor people who lived mainly from fishing and agriculture. Thanks to the skill of the lace makers began to grow, to enrich themselves and expand the local crafts also in foreign countries.

Burano is very famous for its needle lace. However, there is also a production of Venetian masks and many inhabitants of the island work in nearby Murano, producing precious glass objects.

How to get to Burano

Public transportations

From Santa Lucia Railway Station
ACTV's lines (Venetian public transport company) that bring to "Fondamente Nove":

  • Lines 1 e N (Nocturne): get off at Ca' D'oro stop and proceed to Fondamente Nove (5 minutes) at the boarding for the 12 line, which connects Venice to Burano

  • Lines 4.2 e 5.2: get off at Fondamente Nove stop and go to the 12 line's boarding beyond Donà Bridge. This line connects Venice to Burano in about 40 minutes.

  • Line 3 (Murano Direct): get off at "Murano Faro" stop and take the waterbus to Burano at the 12 Boarding.

What to do in Burano

Capture the colour of Burano

If you’ve heard of Burano, or at the very least entered it into Google images, the one thing you’ll have taken away is the vibrancy of its buildings. Tangerine, teal, fuchsia, and lime houses line the canal and cobbled streets, but it’s not just for aesthetic reasons – the fishermen who first inhabited them picked bold colours to help them find their way back after a long day on the water in the thick fog that often descends upon the Lagoon, and some matched their boat colours to their house so if something happened to them the colour would indicate which door to knock on.

Learn to make lace

After fishing, lacemaking is Burano’s biggest money maker. The tradition dates back to the 1500s and was almost exclusively done at Scuola Merletti, or the Lace School, which is now a museum dedicated to the craft. What makes Burano lace different to other types of lace is the intricacy of the pattern and the delicate, gossamer-fine threads used. Only a handful of women do it in the traditional way these days, so the lace shops in the square are filled with replicas and even lace made in China, so check the label carefully. If it seems too cheap, it probably isn’t the real deal – Venetian lace is a luxury item that few can afford a lot of. Go to Dalla Lidia Merletti d'Arte for authentic Burano lace. Want to learn the art of Burano lace making? Martina Vidal Venezia is a Home Linen Atelier created by Martina and her brother Sergio as a concept store and teaching workshop, where you can sign up for an eight-hour introductory course. Price on request.

Prop up the leaning campanile of San Martino

Leaning Tower of Pisa? Been there, done that. Stand in the main square that surrounds the Church of San Martino in Burano and you can seemingly hold up the slanted ‘campanile’ without having to fight with hundreds of other visitors trying to get the same shot. Once you’ve got your picture, head inside and marvel at the architecture and Rococo art. Look out for the famous trio of St. Rocco, St. Sebastian and St. Antonio Abate by Jacopo Palma il Giovane and be sure to get close enough to the main altar to appreciate the ornate columns of French red marble and ancient oriental marble that encase it.

Eat fresh seafood – for half the price of Venice

Almost all of the fish in Rialto market in Venice is caught by the fisherman of Burano, so a visit to Burano itself means you can enjoy the much-lauded seafood straight from the source and without the premium the tourist hotspot demands. If you only have time for one restaurant during your trip, make it Al Gatto Nero. It’s a favourite of food bloggers – and chefs like Jamie Oliver – and has been serving a menu of fresh fish and pasta that changes daily since the 1960s. Pappardelle with langoustines and smoked ricotta is a must try, as is the John Dory and platter of razor clams, when they’re available. If you like your lunch with a side of art, book a table at Trattoria da Romano where you can enjoy traditional Venetian cuisine surrounded by more than 400 paintings from local and now-famous artists who paid for their meal with their work. It’s a favourite of Keith Richards and was once the haunt of Ernest Hemingway and Charlie Chaplin – look carefully at the menu for proof of their visits.

Satisfy your sweet tooth

After your fill of fish, find a pasticceria and hone in on the Bussolai Buranei or Venetian butter cookies. The delicious S-shaped biscuit is a local favourite steeped in history – they were originally made by fishermen’s wives for their husbands destined for long periods on the water because they would stay fresh all day – and they’re served in most cafés, alongside your espresso. At Panificio Pasticceria Palmisano Carmelina they’re flavoured with vanilla, lemon, or if you’re lucky, rum.

Venice Carnival by Venice Photo Walk

VENICE CARNIVAL EVENTS AND TIPS

Venice Carnival season lasts about two weeks, culminating on the day of Carnival or Shrove Tuesday.

A few events mark the highlights of Venice Carnival:

Water Parade

The first Saturday and Sunday of Carnival, a parade of brightly decorated boats plies the Rio di Cannaregio starting at 6pm on Saturday, and continuing on Sunday from 11 AM. After the parade, food stalls open on the canalside promenade.

Festa delle Marie

On the second Saturday of Carnival takes place this historical procession that recalls the tradition of 12 of Venice's fairest young women being presented to the Doge. This parade, one of the few to take place on dry land, begins at via Garibaldi and culminates at Piazza San Marco.

Flight of the Angel

On the second Sunday of Carnival, a costumed angel "flies", suspended on a rope, through Piazza San Marco to greet the Doge.

Tips for Visiting Venice During Carnevale Season

Plan ahead and book your hotel well in advance for Carnival season, it is an high season period.

Carnevale is an elegant affair in Venice. People wear elaborate costumes and masks all over town so there's lots to see just by walking around.

Although the main events are centered around Piazza San Marco, Carnival events are held in every Sestiere.

Most high-end hotels hold masked balls, which are smaller and more private than the public events.

Carnival dates change every year, corresponding with Shrove Tuesday forty days before Easter. Check Carnival upcoming dates here and go to the Venice Carnival site for updated event information.

Carnevale is a winter event, so weather may be cold or rainy - see Venice Weather for average temperatures and rainfall.

The official website of the Carnevale di Venezia has information on these and all other public events associated with the festivities.

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Regata delle Befane January 6th by Marco Secchi

On the 6th of January will take place the traditional Befane Regatta.

This is a playful regatta between the old members of the city's oldest rowing company, the Bucintoro, which, disguised as "Befane", compete in the central stretch of the Grand Canal from S. Tomà to the Rialto Bridge.

The regatta has reached its 41st edition, 5 members of the Bucintoro will participate, the departure is scheduled at 11 am, the finish line is placed under the Rialto bridge, to which a huge stocking is hung.

 Venice, ITALY. 6 January, 2018. Participants dressed up as elderly women row on the Grand Canal during the 37th Befana Regata. � Stefano Mazzola/Awakening/Alamy Live News

I Tre Mercanti by Marco Secchi

Tiramisù, one of the best cake in Italy, and a unique way to taste it in Venice at I Tre Mercanti

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Three local venetian guys in 2007 realised that our town deserved a place where Venetan residents and visitors alike could finally find the best ingredients of the Italian culinary tradition.

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Tiramisù has been created in Veneto in the beautiful town of Treviso near Venice in the 60’s, and has quickly become the most famous Italian cake all over the world even though very few has been able to master it, innovate and at the same time remain faithful to the original rich and light combination of flavours.



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I Tre Mercant has been able to keep a strong foot in the tradition, perfecting the original recipe, and at the same tme bring new life to Tiramisù by exploring with new flavours and ingredients.In this unique place in the city centre of Venice, you can taste an incredible variety of Tiramisù.


http://www.itremercant.it/

Christmas and Festive Season in Venice by Marco Secchi

What can you do if you are visiting Venice during Christmas time?

 VENICE, ITALY - DECEMBER 08:  Three gondoliers chat near a Christmas decorated Rialto Bridge on December 8, 2011 in Venice, Italy.



First of all, you can have a quiet walk in a less crowded city, with a magical mist and Christmas lights on the houses and on the canals. In St. Mark square you will find the Christmas Tree, and you can walk under the porticos of the Procuratie, where the ceilings are decorated with luminous rows that recall a cascade of snowflakes.In Calle XXIII Marzo, the street of the luxury shops, you can make shopping under luminaries that create a unique atmosphere with the ancient palaces.

Soak up the festive atmosphere by strolling through the streets and lingering in squares or churches to listen to choirs singing and the church bells ringing. On Christmas Day itself, the bells ring out all day from St Mark's Bell Tower.

If your walk has left you chilly warm up with a hot chocolate in Caffè Florian on St Mark's Square.

Do you want to buy some typical food or some artisanal gift?

Take advantage of the Christmas Market in Strada Nova and Accademia area, maybe drinking a glass of Vin Brulè (typical winter hot wine) to warm up a little.

In Campo San Polo there is the ice skating rink, fun for adults and children.Are you classical music lovers?

If the answer is yes, the Venice Christmas season offers a variety of concerts. Many Venetian churches for Christmas o organize evening shows: from traditional Christmas songs to more modern tunes performed by international singers, in short, shows for all tastes.And you cannot miss the Santa Claus Run on 16th of December, starting from Campo San Giacometto, close to Rialto Bridge.

Venetians have their main Christmas celebration on Christmas Eve or “La Vigilia”. Families traditionally tuck into a fish dinner of several courses before heading to midnight mass. If you want to join them, services at St Mark's Basilica start at 11:30 p.m. and are conducted in English, French and German as well as Italian.

Coffee in Venice? by Marco Secchi

Our list of favourite coffee places in Venice

IL CAFFE DEL DOGE

venezia, rialto, calle dei cinque, san polo 609

Founded in 1952 in Venice, a stone's throw from the Rialto Bridge, the small artisan roasting machine Il caffè del doge is a reference point for lovers of fresh roasted coffee, to be enjoyed at home.

Half a century of history and jealously guarded secrets: even today, despite following a cutting-edge roasting system, it maintains the characteristics of the traditional method of processing: the "Venetian Classical Method".

So many coffees can be savored: from 100% Arabica, to the Rialto espresso coffee, from the goumert, to the coffee of the seasons.


TORREFAZIONE CANNAREGIO

venezia, Fondamenta dei Ormesini, Cannaregio 2804

Founded in 1930, the Torrefazione Cannaregio for almost 90 years continues every day with the same passion to devote himself to coffee, attentive to roasting methods and raw materials that come from the best coffee areas in the world.

Leading product is the Café Remer, a combination of eight different qualities of arabica: which guarantees a low concentration of caffeine.

But at Torrefazione Cannaregio there is not only coffee: also "pasta cafè", a durum wheat semolina pasta at the Café Remèr; "Cocoa paste", a durum wheat semolina with cocoa selection Brazil; "Gondola bases", fine pastry with a touch of Café Remer to enhance its delicate taste; "Dragee", roasted coffee beans covered with dark chocolate.


CAFFE ROSSO

venezia, CAMPO SANTA MARGHERITA, DORSODURO 2963

Local Venetian historian, its birth dates back to the late nineteenth century, the Red Coffee is an important point of passage for Venetians, artists, students and tourists: currently the historic coffee machine in copper and brass is the oldest employee of Caffè Rosso .

In 2002, Caffè Rosso started selling merchandising and donating profits for charity operations.


CAFFE POGGI

venezia, calle nuova sant’agnese, dorsoduro 855

For those who want to stay away from mass tourism and rediscover the truest Venice, the "Caffè Poggi since 1919" is what you need: here you can enjoy an excellent espresso in a typical Venetian restaurant, where you can also find biscuits and other local treats as souvenirs. If you are passing through the Accademia area, before or after visiting the Gallerie dell'Accademia, the Guggenheim Collection or the Cini Collection, do not miss it.


GRAN CAFFE QUADRI

venezia, piazza san marco, san marco 121

A class stop in one of the best known and loved venetian historical premises, the "Gran Caffè Quadri", open since 1638, where you can taste the famous coffee by Gianni Frasi, sitting in Piazza San Marco, one of the most evocative scenes in the world .

The espresso is prepared with the varieties selected for Grancaffè by Gianni Frasi, from the Torrefazione Giamaica of Verona, and roasted directly on open flame with a machine that still works manually; the baristas, who use manual Faema machines, have been personally instructed by the Frasi himself, in order to obtain a perfect espresso.

Vegan and Vegetarian restaurants in Venice by Marco Secchi

Our list of Vegan and Vegetarian restaurants in Venice

La Tecia Vegana

Calle dei Sechi Dorsoduro 2104, Venice

Vegan restaurant

La Tecia Vegana, literally “The Vegan Pot”, is a small and comfortable restaurant in the heart of the city of Venice, and the only organic vegan restaurant. The restaurant is managed by husband-and-wife team, that in the kitchen create delectable dishes such as ravioli with seitan and porcini mushrooms, and offer many gluten-free dishes.

La Cocaeta

Fondamenta San Giobbe 548 B, 30121 Venice

Vegan Crepes

Cocaeta (meaning “little tern” in Venetian dialect) is a super tiny creperie in Venice, located about 10 minutes walking distance from Venice train station. The mixture of all crêpes is vegan, and you can chose from many vegan ingredients. It is perfect for a quick lunch or a snack in the afternoon.

Gastrosofia Le Spighe

Castello 1341, 30122 Venice

Vegan dishes

It is a small gastronomy in the venetian district of Castello, that offers vegetarian and vegan dishes. Very good for a quick lunch or a take away in one of the less known district of Venice.

Bella & Brava

Cannaregio 4383, Venice

Vegan pizza

A small local where you can eat a vegetarian or vegan pizza, very rare to find in the city of Venice. You can sit down in one of the table, or take your vegan pizza and eat it where you prefer.

Orient Experience

Cannaregio 1847/b e Campo Santa Margherita, Venice

Vegan restaurant

It is a journey through spicy oriental flavors, in one of the less crowded and more inspiring district of Venice, Cannaregio. You can compose your own plate with 3 or 4 dishes of your choice. The local is tiny and intimate, very good for a romantic dinner.

Pizzeria L’Angelo

Calle Della Mandola 3711, 30124 Venice

Vegan take away

It is a take away pizzeria, located between St. Marc square and Rialto bridge, in the heart of the city of Venice. The menu offers a fair number of vegan pizzas, and sandwiches and other vegan snacks that are prepared in advance and put in plain sight.

Fiumefreddo Bio

Cannaregio 4467, Venezia

Vegan Restaurant

Fiumefreddo is a small place in a strategic position close to Rialto bridge. It is a gastronomy with few seats and a small outdoor area with vegan proposals from breakfast to dinner, passing for lunch and aperitif.

Da Mario alla Fava

Venezia, Calle dei Stagneri 5242, Venice

Vegan Restaurant

Is one of the historic restaurants in Venice, from 1960, that has decided to fully welcome the progress of vegan cuisine. To try for those who want to get a taste of authentic Venice, discarding fish and meat.

La Zucca

Santa Croce, 1762, Venice

Vegan restaurant

La Zucca is one of the best restaurants that offers vegetarian food. You can start your meal with a Tagliatelle with tomatoes and eggplant from its ever changing menu and finish with mouthwatering strawberries and cream topped with chocolate sauce. If your companion isn't a vegetarian and would love a fix of meat, there is also the choice of a juicy duck thigh with apples. The restaurant is located near a nice small canal, in the Santa Croce district, in the middle of Venice.

Purem

Cannaregio 2085 – Rio Terà de la Maddalena, 30123 Venezia

Vegan smoothies

Purem is a smoothie paradise. The good news for vegans is that each of the many versions indicated on the blackboard can be made with vegetable milk: soy, rice, coconut and almond. The same is for dark hot chocolate. All the fruit is organic and the combinations are many, imaginative and inviting.

Ethnic Restaurants in Venice by Marco Secchi

This is the list of Simone favourite ethnic restaurants in Venice.

Buddha Soul Restò

Gran Viale S. M. Elisabetta 28, Venice Lido

The Buddha Soul Restò is a typical Indian cuisine restaurant located in Venice Lido. Lights, colours and flavours of India in the new restaurant on Grand Avenue. Not only rice, spices, curry and chutney, Under a sky of stars (even in the small dining room), you can taste typical dishes especially the Indian, “Thali”, main dish consists of several portions, variants that you prefer. In addition, take-away point, a small Indian grill, and home dinners and catering service.

Los Murales

Giudecca 70, Fondamenta Della Croce, Venice

Mexican food in Venice? No problem, just choose the restaurant mural in Le Zitelle Fondamenta, La Giudecca. The strong flavours and tastes spicy Central American cuisine with a blend of beautiful scenery and interesting streets and squares. 


Mirai

Cannaregio 225, Rio Terà Lista De Spagna, Venice

The restaurant Mirai comes from the philosophy of the classic Japanese sushi and observes the precepts of preparation. The creative sushi is a new and old to assemble ingredients belonging to different traditions, but whose common element is the rice. The Mirai favors the use of fish (and the best quality and freshness); Closed on Mondays and other days it is open from 19 to 23.30.


Frary's 

San Polo 2559, Fondamenta dei Frari, Venice

Frary’s Bar is a charming restaurant in the San Polo 2559, with a view across the Frari: a few tables, prepared in a simple way but tastefully . A candle light, you can immerse yourself in the tastes and smells of the Middle Eastern cuisine: the couscous with vegetables and tzatziki sauce gyros at mutton, rice Jordanian Musaka the Greek by Greek almond biscuits and walnut pudding with Arabic mint and pistachio. And then the Arab bread served warm. The Greek wines are imported, carefully selected thanks to the Hellenic Owner.


Orient Experience

Rio Terà Farsetti, 1847/b, Venice

The ideal place to try a fusion cuisine, with influences from Turkey, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Kurdistan, perfectly fell within the lagoon culinary tradition. The dishes served are mainly based on rice, vegetables, meat and spices. Many spices. The quality of the food is very high, the variety of alternatives to choose from so wide that you almost feel embarrassed about making choices.


Il Giardino di Giada

Calle dei Boteri, 1659, Venice

Typical Chinese cuisine, with some markedly Mediterranean influence. A well-groomed environment where you can enjoy a wide variety of valuable dishes. Excellent appetizers, delicious first courses of rice and spaghetti, delicious main courses, especially those with prawns and beef. The ideal would be to try a little of everything, but to do it you need to come back several times.


Ghimel Garden

Sestiere Cannaregio, 2873, Venice

Jewish restaurant with furnishings and decorations intimate garden which also offers Italian foods, gluten-free and vegan.


Africa Experience

Calle Lunga San Barnaba, 2722, Venice

An African restaurant staffed by refugees and immigrants from all over Africa. 


Luna Sentada

Fondamenta S. Severo, 5018, Venice

Mediterranean menu and Venetian and Asian specialties including wood and exposed stone in a rustic-chic location.

Ganesh Ji

Calle del Scaleter, 2426, Venice

Typical Indian curry served in a simple and relaxed venue, carpeted with oriental artwork.

Our Favorite Restaurants in Venice (Nov.2018) by Marco Secchi

Which one are our favourite restaurants in Venice?? Where do we go for formal lunch?? Or for a romantic dinner? It is now time to tel.

Do leave your feedback and post below or tell us YOUR favourite venues!!

La Zucca

Vegetarian restaurants are hard to find in Venice, once you've eliminated pizza from your list of menu choices. And while Osteria La Zucca isn't a vegetarian restaurant, (No fish and a little bit of meat, lot of vegetables) it's a great place for anyone who likes vegetables--if only because Zucca's chefs turn common garden-variety ingredients like carrots and eggplant into works of culinary art. Zucca is a small restaurant with just two rooms and a total seating capacity of 30 to 35 customers. In summer outdoor tables add space for a few more guests. The atmosphere is modern with slatted wood tables and walls. Wine racks add to the cozy ambience, and an attractive display case in the front room lets you see what dishes are being served.

La Zucca is owned by three partners who take turns cooking. The chefs and of course the menus vary from one day to the next, so it's hard to recommend any one specialty.

Osteria La Zucca

San Giacomo dell'Orio

Santa Croce 1762 - Venezia

Italy

Tel. 041-52 41 570


Paradiso Perduto

The quiet district of Cannaregio is home to one of Venice’s unique restaurants. Don’t expect white tablecloths and candles at this more hip and cool place with a very local feel. A seat at the long table inside or at one of the tables outside along the canal is highly coveted and reservations are recommended. The food comes mainly from the sea.

Don’t be surprised to find the chef/owner Maurizio sitting next to you at the table; he’s known to mingle with the guests, giving generously of his time. He looks like a cross between Santa and the Swedish chef from the Muppets and the way he plays host at his restaurant helps to make it a genuine experience. He speaks several languages, but refuses to speak English.

Paradiso Perduto is one of the few restaurants in Venice where you can also enjoy live music three Sundays a month, mostly jazz or salsa.

Paradiso Perduto

Fondamenta de la Misericordia, 2640


Antica Adelaide

This restaurant Osteria is of the most ancient in Cannaregio District in Venice, opened since the 18th century! Its chief, Alvise Ceccato, Venetian and proud to be, has decided to only offer typical Venetian dishes.

Food and especially fish is fresh from the market. You will eat here for about 35€ per person plus beverages for a full meal antipasti + Primi Patti + Secondi Piatti + Desserts.

Restaurant Antica Adelaide

3728, Calle Larga Priuli Racheta

Cannaregio

Venezia


Trattoria alla Madonna

Cuisine and chaos at a old-school trattoria in Venice A veritable seafood mecca since 1954 Situated near the Rialto market, originally an antique Venetian tavern characterised by the presence of an ancient grapevine, which has maintained over the years its style and quality of its traditional dishes with the freshness of the raw materials as its strong point.

Their specialities are based mainly on a fish menu prepared to naturally enhance the typical flavours of each single dish, of the many proposals we recommend sardines in "soar", crab, risotto with seafood or squid ink, grilled and fried fish.

Meat based dishes include Venetian style liver, grilled chops and ox fillets.

The cellar offers a good choice of wines from the Friuli region, the principal Italian regional labels, such as Barolo, Brunello di Montalcino and Chianti Riserva.

The restaurant is often visited by cultural and show business celebrities, who prefer an informal setting with an attentive quick service.

The service here is friendly but occasionally brusque as waiters constantly rush to satisfy diners. You won’t be able to linger over your meals here—so only visit if you’re looking for fast, delicious, traditional food, not a romantic evening out.

Trattoria alla Madonna

Calle della Madonna, San Polo, 594 - 30125 Venezia (VE) - IT

Tel: + 39 041.5223824

Fax: + 39 041.5210167

www.ristoranteallamadonna.com


Al Graspo de ua

Tradition meets the modern world in this brand new restaurant, Graspo de Ua, offering – in the chef’s own words – “Italian and Venetian style food”. The dish to try is bigoli in salsa, whole-wheat spaghetti with sardines and onions, or the fried cod with vegetable flan.

Wine lovers can count on more than 200 labels, and light tasting menus are also available. It’s not the cheapest place in Venice, but the classy atmosphere makes it worth it. And if you’re travelling with kids, keep in mind that under 12s get a 50% discount on their meal.

S. Marco, 5096, 30124 Venezia VE, Italy

+39 041 528 8285


Riviera

If you are looking for one of the most special restaurants in Venice where you can enjoy a meal from a terrace with a view, then Riviera is a great choice, as the view is superb. One of the most distinctive aspects of the menu is that it presents traditional dishes with a modern twist; it includes some seafood dishes, as well as others made from locally sourced meat. Although it might stretch your budget, dishes such as the venison with blueberry sauce and spaghetti with langoustine tails really make a trip here worthwhile.

 Fondamenta Zattere al Ponte Longo 1473,

30123 Venezia, Italy

http://www.ristoranteriviera.it/


Alle Testiere

If you manage to get reservations at this beautiful little restaurant, you can be confident that you’ll get to try some wonderfully prepared simple dishes. The restaurant only has space for twenty-four people (they do two sittings in the evening), which gives it an amazing atmosphere. They also have a great range of local and regional wines. The seafood plays the starring role, and whether you opt for squid in ink, oysters, or whatever else has been caught by the fishermen that day, you can be confident of excellent quality.

Calle del Mondo Novo 5801,

30122 Venezia, Italy

http://www.osterialletestiere.it


Antiche Carampane

This absolutely hidden local favorite is worth finding for its insiders-only, clubby vibe that still somehow maintains an unpretentious air. Standouts from the typically Venetian menu include dishes like fried soft-shell crab with delicious fried eggplant slivers, seasonal vegetables, and daily fish specials. Fish is the thing here, just about the freshest you can imagine. In fact, while I was there recently the owner had to interrupt taking my order to chat with a fisherman who had just arrived. They were discussing what he was likely to catch the following day, and if so, how much Carampane would order. That’s right. They were talking about fish so fresh it was still swimming around in the ocean.

Do feel free to look at the menu, but it’s mostly just for show. (except for the large sign out front that declares: no pizza, no lasagna, no menu turistico. That’s for real) The menu changes daily based on – as I’ve explained – the catch of the day.

Antiche Carampane

Rio Terra delle Carampane

+39.041.524.0165

Health and Emergencies in Venice by Marco Secchi

 

First Aid

Venice - Piazza San Marco 63/65 Procuratie Nuove 

8 am - 8 pm every day

Link to the map: 

https://www.google.it/maps/place/First+Aid+San+Marco/@45.4339335,12.3380314,18.65z/data=!4m5!3m4!1s0x0:0x8800be4dcebc3721!8m2!3d45.4334955!4d12.3381943

 

Emergencies:

In case of an emergency, please call 118 which is the national emergency number valid all over Italy, and active 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. The call is free on landlines and mobile phones.

Health network project

The “Salute in rete” project organized by the Local health and care services -ULSS 12- offers qualified medical and emergencies services to residents, tourists, business operators, workers, commuters and students through a network of medical centres, units and equipment:

Pharmacies:

Pharmacies are open from 8.30am to12.30pm, and from 4.00pm to 8.00pm, Mondays to Fridays; and from 9.00am to 12.00 midday on Saturdays.  Opening hours are displayed at the entrance of each pharmacy, together with a night service roster. For more information please check pharmacies on duty

Doctor on call:
This service is operative every day from 8.00pm to 8.00am the following day; and on days before holidays from 10.00am to 8.00am the following day; on holidays from 8.00am to 8.00pm.

  • Centro Storico Venezia tel. 0039 041 5294060

  • Lido Malmocco Alberoni tel. 0039 041 5267743

  • Pellestrina tel. 0039 041 967549

  • Burano tel. 0039 041 730005

  • Murano S. Erasmo tel. 0039 041 5274078

  • Cavallino Treporti Ca’ Savio tel. 0039 041 5300214

  • Mestre Sud – Marghera – Mestre Nord tel. 0039 041 9657999

  • Marcon Quarto d’Altino tel. 0039 0422 824146

Doctor on call for tourists

Exclusively for tourists  in summer, from 13th June to 15th September. Clinic hours and home calls every day from 8.30am to 1.30pm and from 2.30pm to 7.30pm.  The clinic is at Via Lisbona 1 Ca' Vio-Cavallino, Venice. Tel: 0039 041 5300874

Hospitals:

DISTRETTO DEL VENEZIANO
Venezia Centro Storico, Isole ed Estuario, Cavallino-Treporti
DISTRETTO DEL VENEZIANO
Venezia Terraferma, Marcon e Quarto d'Altino
DISTRETTO DI MIRANO-DOLO
DISTRETTO DI CHIOGGIA
 

First aid point at Lido di Venezia:

Ospedale Al Mare - Centro Sanitario Polifunzionale - (Outpatients clinic)

Paediatric Wards

Ulss 12 Venezia Ospedale SS. Giovanni e Paolo - Pediatria - (Peadiatric ward)
Ulss 12 Mestre Ospedale dell’Angelo - Pediatria - (Peadiatric ward)

Links

Non-urgent healthcare transport with different organizations, see link
Health assistance for foreigners in Italy, see link

My Fav Hotels in Venice by Marco Secchi

A #bench at hotel #cipriani in...

A #bench at hotel #cipriani in… (Photo credit: MarcoSecchi)

You can certainly spend a great deal of money on a hotel in Venice. A night at the Gritti Palace in high summer will set you back at least £750. But for the same amount you could enjoy an entire week in most of the hotels listed here. You won’t get the same status, or quite the same service, or the same superb location, but you will still find a decently sized room, lots of character and a warm welcome.

Cà del Nobile San Marco 987, ria terà delle Colonne (528 3473; cadelnobile.com)

This hotel is just off one of the thronging routes between St Mark’s and the Rialto. Interestingly, it’s in one of the lowest points of the city: if you visit during acqua alta, you’ll be able to watch water bubbling up through the cobblestones below. Lots of stairs and no lift mean that it’s not for the unfit. Price from £79

Domus Orsoni Cannaregio 1045, Sottoportego dei Vedei (275 9538; domusorsoni.it)

In 1291, Venice’s glassworkers were banished to the island of Murano. Today, only one glass foundry remains in the city: Orsoni. Located in the Jewish Ghetto, and set in a delightful palazzo overlooking a private garden and the foundry, the Domus Orsoni channels the Orsoni family’s heritage in five rooms, resplendent with glass-mosaic-tiled walls and mosaic art works. Price from £71

Locanda Orseolo (Corte Zorzi; 041 523 5586; www.locandaorseolo.com; £160).

Step inside the hotel and you might be in a compartment on the Orient Express: elegant, enveloping, and richly coloured and furnished. But it’s the warmth of the young team at this equally young 15-room hotel that makes it really special – Matteo, Barbara and their brothers, sisters and friends. In the morning, Matteo dons an apron and cooks pancakes and omelettes to order, Barbara serves and everyone chats. The comfortable bedrooms are being transformed to echo the ground floor, complete with hand-painted murals and canopied beds. Secure one and you’ll have a real bargain.

La Villeggiatura San Polo, 1569, Calle dei Botteri (524 4673; lavilleggiatura.it)

A short hop from the Rialto markets, in an area buzzing with restaurants and residential activity, La Villeggiatura is an elegantly tasteful home-from-home. Tea and coffee-making equipment in the spacious bedrooms, and gently attentive service, add to the pleasure of a stay here. Price from £71

Hotel Centauro S Marco Calle della Vida Cpo Manin (www.hotelcentauro.com/)

Located in the historic centre of Venice just a stone’s throw from St Mark’s Square (five minutes walking distance), the Centauro Hotel offers elegant, welcoming accommodation from which you can enjoy the city’s art and culture. Housed within an ancient palace from the 1500’s, the Centauro Hotel has Venetian style furnishings from the 18th century and 30 comfortable guestrooms. Rooms have air conditioning and satellite television, some have canal views and those on the top floor have a private terrace from which you can enjoy panoramic views over the rooftops of Venice.

Al Ponte Mocenigo This is another charming 16th-century palazzo, so tucked away that you could walk right past and never know it was there. You will find one entrance down a very narrow alley just up from the San Stae vaporetto stop; the other is on the opposite side, over a small bridge. Officially it is a two-star hotel, but frankly it rivals many establishments with double that number of stars. The very smart, high-ceilinged rooms are in Venetian styles and colours. The best are numbers five and six, on the first floor overlooking a tiny canal to one side (they are classed as “superior” doubles and cost £128 in mid-season).

How to Find an Address in Venice by Marco Secchi

Italy's Venice is a city with many sights to see, but finding these sights can be difficult if you're not familiar with the town's address system. The city was built to make sense to those using the canals, not those on foot. You're bound to get lost at least once as you wander the streets searching for hidden gems of the city.

A map may tell you the name of alleys and squares, but a typical Venetian address is simply: San Marco 1323. Venice is split into districts called sestieri, and each building in a sestiere is numbered in one long consecutive sequence. Venice's random and informal street names are not officially part of an address, although many businesses will helpfully provide one. To pin-point a location therefore, you don't just need the brief official address, you also need a street/square name and also some helpful geographical pointer, e.g. a nearby church.

Even street names are far from straightforward. Most have evolved to describe an established location and mean descriptive things like 'Alley of the carpenters' or 'Courtyard with a well'. Consequently there are often several places with the same or similar names. If you are locating a street, you will require the name of the sestiere as well (what's more, sometimes there is more than one place with the same name in one sestiere). And even armed with official address, and street name, your task still isn't simple.

The next confusion is that sometimes one place may have more than one name. Even one name may have different versions - many streets in Venice are known both by their dialect name and by the Italianised version. Either of these may appear on maps. This is why you'll see many variations of placenames such as Fondamenta Nove (even throughout this website).

Streetsigns are not always easy to spot in narrow lanes. They may offer one or more variations on the name (o means 'or'), and they are often joined on the walls by signs identifying the parish (parocchia) and any adjacent canal (rio) or bridge (ponte).

If you're spending a long time in Venice or are just very interested in the city's structure, there is a good book called Calli, Campielli e Canali which provides extremely large scale street plans, along with property numbers. It covers Venice and the lagoon islands, and enables you to locate any address in the city, as well as providing some background information in Italian and English on landmarks and principal buildings. You can buy it in most bookshops in Venice. Sadly, it's rather too bulky to carry around as you explore.

What the names mean

Here are some of the most common titles for places in Venice: Calle - a lane or alley Campo - public open space (irregularly-shaped and less formal than a 'piazza'). Campo means field, and once these were rough-surfaced in earth or grass, and used for burials. They are still the hubs of their neighbourhoods. Campiello - a small square or courtyard. Corte - courtyard. Fondamenta - canalside walkway. Piazza - public square. There is only one in Venice, Piazza San Marco. Ponte - bridge. Piscina - filled-in pool of water. Ruga - significant lane, generally one which used to contain shops. Ramo - branch off a more important thoroughfare, whose name it takes. Rio - canal. Rio terrà or terà - filled-in canal, now a street. Salizzada - name given to the earliest streets to be paved. Sottoportego - covered passage under a building, often leading only to water.

Navigating Venice - theories, routes and landmarks

You can spend many idle moments in Venice evolving navigational theories. Landmarks are all-important, both major ones and private reminders. Routes between significant points are learned this way: e.g. ' left by the greengrocers, straight over the square with a tree in it, down the lane between the red house and the yellow house, left past the Renaissance doorway'. Even if you're the sort of person who has an excellent sense of direction, you'll still find that concentrating on a chain of landmarks is more effective in Venice than working from a mental map. If you're arriving for the first time and finding your hotel, make sure they give you simple, descriptive directions. Once you've found your base, memorise the route to the nearest major landmark or street (one that's marked on your map) - then you'll be able to find your way back. While route-finding and consulting maps, do bear in mind the Venetian rules of conduct; walk on the right and don't block streets.

There are certain through-routes in Venice - chains of lanes linking places together. At busy times of the day you'll see locals filing along these tortuous routes, striding down seeming dead-end alleys and darting around sharp corners. After a while you learn those of use to you, and create your own mental database of Venetian routes.

The only destinations signposted at all consistently are St. Mark's (San Marco), the Rialto, the railway station (Ferrovia) and the bus terminus (Piazzale Roma). Even these painted signs do sometimes falter, but generally they are reliable and can help you to head in the right direction. The ones to San Marco are the most suspect, as some signposted lanes can take you a long way round (something to do with shopkeepers wanting passing trade, perhaps?).

My Favorite Maps are here

High Tide in Venice by Marco Secchi

 Yesterday we had the first high Tide of Autumn-Winter 2012.

Today saw the first high tide of the season in Venice with water reading  the level at sea f 110 centimetres above sea level (Marco Secchi)

Generally Venice only has high water in Autumn and Winter and even then it is not every day that the streets are flooded. However when a higher than usual tide is expected in the city, sirens blare to warn the population so that they can prepare themselves. Maps as posted at the boat stops showing alternative pedestrian routes around the city that are equipped with special footbridges to avoid the high water and to reach the main parts of Venice.

level of tide and % of Venice that is flooded less than 80 cm. Normal tide at 100 cm 4% at 110 cm 12% An emergency sound alert the Venetian at 120 cm 35% at 130 cm 70% at 140 cm 90%

If you would like to check the level of your area you can check it here

The causes of the tides are the following: - astronomic: the attraction of the sun and the moon cause the regular rise and fall of the water: "6 hours rise and 6 hours fall". You therefore have two maximums and two minimums a day. - meteorological: a strong south-east wind ("scirocco") may cause the tide to increase by as much as 1 meter. - geographical: the seiche is a sort of long wave that runs through the whole of the Adriatic Sea with a period of approximately 22 hours.

Iphone photo walk and workshop by Marco Secchi

 Today, like it or not, two most commonly used cameras on photo sharing site Flickr are the iPhone 4S and the iPhone 4.

My Instagram and iPhone Pictures (Marco Secchi)

While more serious DSLRs from Canon and Nikon make up the rest of the top five cameras listed it is Apple’s iPhones that are clearly the most used cameras in the world right now—something that doesn’t look like changing any time soon. With each new iPhone release, improvements in both cameras are included as standard and over the last two years we’ve seen an amazing array of photography apps released. Along with these developments there has been an increased amount of iPhone-related questions, so I thought it might be time for a iPhone Venice Photo Walk.

The best camera is the one that you have in your pocket or your purse; the one you can pull out in a restaurant and use to photograph your lunch; the one that is readily available when you catch up with friends, when you’re walking your dog, when you’re on holidays, when you’re feeling spontaneous. And these days, if you have a phone, you have that camera. This Photo Walk will show you how to make the most of that mobility. Mobile photography, iPhoneography, or phone photography—it doesn’t matter what you call it, what matters is that it’s a real and important form of photography. The photos you take on your mobile phone are as valuable as the ones taken on your DSLR or rangefinder. They are valuable because you have captured a photo that would not otherwise exist. While mobile photography as a practice and genre certainly encompasses the range of devices available on the market, this photo walk focuses on the iPhone. The iPhone remains the most popular mobile camera device, and supports the most comprehensive photo app infrastructure. However, people using other devices will be able to benefit from the techniques and concepts described in this book. Most of you will already be taking photos on the iPhone, using your own combination of apps,processes, and filters to produce interesting images. What this short workshop will help you do is use your iPhone to create beautiful, professional looking photographs. It will equip you with the skills to take control of the iPhone, rather than rely on its auto functions. It will give you the confidence to capture the shot, wherever you are, day or night.

Once you have the shot, the book will help you gain control over the editing process, and then show you how to share your images online with your audience.

;-)
;-)

A 2 1/2 h walk around Venice taking pictures with your iphone/ipad (Androids are welcome )discovering landmarks and hidden areas of Venice. Talking about composition, apps and how to use them to get great pics from your iphone and  bring back home perfect memories of you and your loved. Special introductory offer $ 190. Max 2 people or 2 adults + 2 Teens.

[contact-form subject="Iphone Photo Walk REQUEST" to="msecchi@gmail.com"] [contact-field label="Name" type="name" required="true" /] [contact-field label="Email" type="email" required="true" /] [contact-field label="Comment" type="textarea" required="true" /] [/contact-form]

Get around in Venice by Marco Secchi

How to get in and get around....

Because Venice is on a lagoon, the water plays a crucial role in transportation. Whichever way you arrive, the last part of your journey will be on foot from the nearest waterbus/watertaxi jetty. If you need to carry or wheel bags along the narrow streets, bear this in mind when choosing your hotel location and route to it.

Participants Gather For Historical Venetian Wa...
Participants Gather For Historical Venetian Wa...

By plane

The closest commercial airport is Marco Polo Airport  (ICAO: LIPZ, IATA: VCE), on the mainland near Mestre (a more typical Italian city, without Venice's unique structure). There is a city bus and a shuttle bus from Marco Polo to Piazzale Roma. See the details in the By Bus section below.

By Boat - Turn left on leaving the terminal and walk 10 minutes along the covered walkway to the boat jetty. Alilaguna water-bus costs €15 for a leisurely 75 minute boat trip. Murano costs €8 and takes only half an hour. There are three Alilaguna routes to different areas of Venice. A direct waterbus from the airport may be be more convenient than taking the bus to the bus station and then changing to the local waterbus. Note that the waterbus services that run to the airport are operated by a different company (Alilaguna) than the other public waterbus services in Venice, so separate tickets will be required. Alternatively, from the same jetty, you can travel in style (and much faster) by hiring one of the speedy water-taxis (30 mins) for about €110. All these tickets are now buy-able online, as well as the airport waterbus route map.

The Treviso Airport  (ICAO: LIPH, IATA: TSF), located 25 km (16 mi) from Venice, is relatively smaller but becoming increasingly busy as the main destination for Ryanair, Wizzair, and Transavia budget flights. From Treviso Airport to Venice and Mestre, Barzi Bus Service [5] offers a €13 round-trip ticket price from-to Venice. Also these tickets available on their bus outside the airport for €13.

The San Nicolo Airport (ICAO: LIPV, IATA: ATC) is an airfield directly on the Lido. It handles only small aircraft, as the runway (grass) is about 1 km long, and does not have any scheduled flights, but might be of interest to private pilots (arrivals from Schengen states only) due to its convenience to the city (it is a short walk to the vaporetto landing).

By train

Trains from the mainland run through Mestre to the Venezia Santa Lucia train station on the west side of Venice; make sure you don't get confused with Venezia Mestre which is the last stop on the mainland. From the station district, water buses (vaporetti) or water taxis can take you to hotels or other locations on the islands, but walking is usually the best option. Direct trains to Venice are available from many international destinations, there are overnight trains from Munich, Paris and Vienna and also a weekly long-distance night train (four nights) from Moscow via Kiev, Budapest and Zagreb. Venice is well-connected with the domestic train network, Rome and Milano are only a few hours away. Also there are night trains from cities in southern Italy, the Bari-Venezia line having its terminus in Venice.

By car

Cars arrive on the far western edge of Venice, but remain parked at the entrance to the city (Piazzale Roma or Tronchetto - Europe's largest car park.) There are no roads past this point -- and never were, even before cars. Car parking is expensive here (26 €/12h, 30 €/24h) and the tailbacks can be quite large. An alternative is to use the car parks on the mainland (terra firma) and catch a vaporetto, train or bus into Venice. Park near the Mestre railway station, and catch a train to Venezia St.Lucia; there are many trains, it is very near (8-10 minutes) and quite cheap. (Don't bother searching for free parking near the train station - there are no free parking spots near.) Besides, Venezia St. Lucia is a good starting point to visit Venice. However drivers going to the Lido can use the car ferry from Tronchetto (vaporetto 17 - frequencies vary), right hand lane off the Ponte della Libertà into the city.

By rental car

Most of the major rental car companies have outlets at Piazzale Roma, at the edge of the city. These are on the ground floor of one of the major parking stations. When you are dropping off your car, you need to find street parking and then walk to the rental car outlet and hand in the keys. Do not park in the parking station! There is a vaporetto stop across the road from the parking station.

By bus

There is a direct bus between Marco Polo airport and the Piazzale Roma, on the west bank of Venice operated by ATVO. Starts twice an hour, takes 20 minutes and costs €5. The Piazzale Roma bus station is well served by vaporetti and water-taxis ... and of course, you can walk everywhere. From Mestre, you can take a bus to Venezia- Piazzale Roma. the ticket is €1.30 but if you buy it in the bus it will cost €2.50. You can buy bus tickets from specialized ticket kiosks and vending machines, as well as tobacconists and newsstands. All of the city is connected to Venice by bus.

By boat

Ships arrive at the Stazione Marittima which is at the west end of the main islands, it is served by vaporetti and water taxis.

Get around

Venice, the world's only pedestrian city, is easily walkable, and the absence of cars makes this a particularly pleasant experience. However, walking and standing all day can also be exhausting, so it is best to pace yourself. The Rialtine islands - the 'main' part of Venice - are small enough to walk from one end to the other in about an hour, provided you don't get lost (a common occurrence).

If you want to get around a bit more quickly, there are numerous vaporetti (water buses) and water taxis. The best and most tourist friendly Vaporetto map for me is here. The vaporetti are generally the best way to get around, even if the service route map changes frequently. If you are going to be in Venice for a few days visiting, it is a lot cheaper to use vaporetti than private water taxis. If you want to have a romantic ride along the canals, take a gondola ride, although they tend to exist for more scenic purposes, rather than getting people from point A to point B.

ACTV runs the vaporetti and other public transport services both in the lagoon and on terra ferma. Travel cards are extremely useful since the basic fare for one vaporetto journey is now 7.50 € where Travel Cards are

  • 18,00 € - 12-HOURS TRAVELCARD
  • 20,00 € - 24-HOURS TRAVELCARD
  • 25,00 € - 36-HOURS TRAVELCARD
  • 30,00 € - 48-HOURS TRAVELCARD
  • 35,00 € - 72-HOURS TRAVELCARD
  • 50,00 € - 7 DAYS TRAVELCARD

There are other versions available, including those offering discounts for youth under 29 year of age. Current rates can be found here. I have written before about the Waterbuses and also here

Since February 2009 the Venice Connected website of the Comune di Venezia makes possible to book online (at least 7 days in advance) most services controlled by the town administration (public transportation, access to the civic museums, access to public restrooms, car park tickets, entrance to the Casinò and access to the municipal WiFi network covering the entire historic centre); the online prices vary according to the projected number of visitors but are always cheaper than the current on-site prices (and cheaper than with a Venice Card).

You can also get a Venice Card, which has various options that you can choose when you buy it (public transportation, cultural attractions, toilet access, Alilaguna, etc.) There is a 'Junior' version of the Venice that is available at a slightly reduced rate for those between 5 and 29 years of age. Note, however, that a Venice Card is not recommended for those with less than 3 days in Venice, as most of the top attractions are not included in the Venice Card. If you'll be staying in Venice for a week - get the Venice Card and enjoy traveling from island to island and exploring the various museums and churches it offers access to.

Maps are available at the vaporetto stops in the ticket booths. The map is quite reliable, and is free when getting a Venice Card (€2 otherwise), or view the map here

Venice Cards can be reserved on-line for a considerable discount here. Keep in mind, though, that there are long lines when taking the Venice Card from the ticket booths. The Venezia St. Lucia ticket booth that offers Venice Cards is the one most on the right when you exit the train station.

Otherwise, take a walk! The city is not that big, and you can walk from one end to the other in a few hours (if you stick to the paths conveniently marked with arrows in the direction of major landmarks). But it would take months for a fit person to discover every path in the city. Along the way you will discover marvelous art, superb architecture and breathtaking urban landscaping. Exploring the city randomly by walking is well worth it but also be prepared to get lost easily! Signs all over the city indicate the direction to the main attractions, "Rialto" and "San Marco", as well as the way back to the train station ("ferrovia") and the bus terminal ("Piazzale Roma"). These signs make it easy to have the "get lost experience" even as a one-day tourist.

Be aware that addresses in Venice are of the form DISTRICT NUMBER (The Venetian word for district is "Sestriere"), not STREET NUMBER. To find a specific place using a map, make sure you know which district it is in. The numbers are assigned at the start of the district and increase as they move farther away from the Grand Canal.

Venice's Cats...where are they gone?? by Marco Secchi

VENICE, ITALY - AUGUST 27:  A stray car sleeps on the "fondamenta" on the edge of a canal on August 27, 2011 in Venice, Italy. Dingo is the Anglo-Venetian association part of the AISPA,  founded in 1965 by Helen Saunders and Elena Scapabolla and is devoted to the welfare of venetian stray cats. (Marco Secchi)For a Gallery of Venetian Stray Cats click here

The Lion of St. Mark is Venice's mascot, at least among sculptors and decorators but in real life, the closest lion is probably at the Parco Natura Viva just outside Verona ;-)

With no living lions to reign over Venice, the local feline population has adopted a surrogate leonine role. Back in the 1980s, when I spent my year in Venice as part of the national army service, cats were seen everywhere in the city: sunning themselves on park benches, perched on bridges, wandering the streets, and dining on leftovers at the Rialto fish market.

Now the cat population has been limited mainly by laws and modern way of life, there are still few colonies the main ones are at Ospedale Civile (yes inside!) , at San Lorenzo near the Church, at Bacini, at Giudecca near Ponte Lungo at the Arsenale, there are quite few at the Lido and one at Torcello!

There is an Anglo Italian organization Dingo part of AISPA that works to feed, protect and maintain colonies in a healthy and modern way, they also run the "gattile" (Cattery)  at Malamocco. Despite several misconceptions and a bit of Italian racism there are no proofs (!!!) that Dingo or the Cinese people are responsible for the disappearance of cats from Venice!

In a brilliant book titled A Venetian Bestiary, Jan Morris wrote:"The cat has always been an essential scavenger in a city that depends on the tides for its hygiene, and has periodically been decimated by rat-borne plagues. It was Shylock the Venetian who declared the cat to be 'both necessary and harmless,' and when from time to time the municipality has tried to reduce the teeming feline population, the citizenry has always been up in arms in protest. Your Venetian cats are not like others. Sometimes of course they live in the bosoms of families, and are fed on canned horsemeat, and prettied up with bows: but far more often they survive half-wild, in feral gangs or covens of cats, and not infrequently some cherished household pet, observing the lives of such lucky ruffians from the kitchen window, will abandon the comforts of basket and fireside rug, and take to the streets himself."

 

Pick a number. The Venice waterbuses by Marco Secchi

Venice's vaporetti (singular - vaporetto), or water buses, are the public transportation of Venice and for the Venetian Lagoon. I have posted a Printable Map here. Vaporetti take visitors along the main canals, to the islands, and around the lagoon. Although often crowded, they are by far the least expensive way to get around (other than walking). If you're visiting Venice, sooner or later you'll probably find yourself on a vaporetto!The single vaporetto fare is a steep 6.50 euro (good for one hour from the time it's stamped) but if you plan to spend much time on the vaporetto system, it's wise to buy a travelcard that can be bought at any vaporetto ticket office. Travelcards are good for both water and land transport in the Venice area (land services on the Lido and in Mestre). Here are prices :

  • 18,00 € - 12-HOUR TRAVELCARD
  • 20,00 € - 24-HOUR TRAVELCARD
  • 25,00 € - 36-HOUR TRAVELCARD
  • 30,00 € - 48-HOUR TRAVELCARD
  • 35,00 € - 72-HOUR TRAVELCARD
  • 50,00 € - 7 DAYS TRAVELCARD

Recently, ACTV announced a renumbering of several vaporetto lines, effective November 2, 2011. Here's a handy chart to help make the transition. I can't even imagine what kind of havoc this is going to cause with all the maps of Venice having the old numbering system on them.

How does Venice work? by Marco Secchi

Venice, Italy, “stretching across 117 small islands in the marshy Venetian Lagoon along the Adriatic Sea in northeast Italy,” may be one of the most amazing places in the world to live. Fans of Donna Leon’s fictional detective Guido Brunetti come to know it as a land of good food, water taxis and alleys that dead-end at the water.[vimeo 21688538 w=400 h=225]

Venice Backstage. How does Venice work? from Insula spa on Vimeo.

Having said that Venice is not just a stage set. It is also a city with a resident population, which has productive activities, transportation and services. But how does the “Venice system” work? How do the tides in the lagoon behave? How are the canals formed? And the embankments? What’s under the buildings?