Short Weekend City Breaks in Venice (Venezia) : the perfect get away - Sightseeing and Attractions
The perfect get away for short breaks Venice is possibly the most beautiful and romantic city in Europe. A truly extraordinary place, this floating city is one of Italy's treasures and has inspired artists, poets and writers for centuries. Its churches and museums are home to priceless works of art and its crumbling buildings only add to the otherworldly feeling that oozes from the winding passageways and rippling canals.
Map of Venice (Venezia)
http://www.turismovenezia.it/eng/ - Official tourist site for Venice.
We've seen it so often in so many films and photos that we all have an image of Venice ingrained on our minds yet the Queen of the Adriatic never fails to live up to its reputation. Water laps at the foot of palaces, bobbing boats line the canals and the view across the water from the Palazzo Ducale is just as Canaletto painted it.
Founded fifteen hundred years ago on a cluster of 117 islands, Venice is a union of tiny communities. The churches and public squares now joined by a maze of winding laneways and canals are flanked by architectural gems - all that remains of the city's heyday as one of the most important trading points between the East and West.
As merchants flocked to the city and warriors flocked to others its power and wealth rose until the Venetian empire extended across most of the Mediterranean. And the priceless treasures and artworks plundered on raids across the region litter the churches, museums and palaces of Venice to this day.
Since its glory days Venice has remained largely unchanged, its glorious medieval buildings stuck in a time warp that no one dares disturb. An ideal city for short breaks Venice is very compact and perfect for walking but getting lost among the city's winding lanes is a given.
Although the main sights such as St Mark's Square and Basilica, the Rialto Bridge and the Palazzo Ducale are thronged with hoards of visitors year round it's not difficult to get away from the crowds. The back streets are lined with buildings that in any other city would be major attractions, the museums are full of treasures and the sleepy islands of Italy's most famous lagoon hold glories of their own.
Ride the vaporetto along the Grand Canal, take a tour on a gondola, lose yourself in the streets or just sit back and soak up the atmosphere. The timeless charms of Venice will impress even the most jaded of travel buffs. But do it now: Venice may have a flamboyant past but it also has an uncertain future. The ever increasing number of tourists and diminishing local population endanger its position as anything other than an elaborate theme park and rising water levels threaten to swamp its palaces, cathedrals and museums. As the city authorities argue over the best way to protect their priceless charge, experts worry that even the most elaborate of water barriers may not save the city from its watery grave.