"Take a look around St Marks..." Piazza San Marco & Basilica San Marco Tip by zys1

 
 

Favorite thing: Take a look around St Marks Square.

In New York, every tourist has to visit Times Square. In London, Trafalgar Square and Piccadilly Circus vie for the visitor's attention. In Paris, the vacationer is expected to give at least a passing glance to the Place de la Concorde.
The equivalent tourist magnet in Venice is the Piazza San Marco, better known to Anglophones as St. Mark's Square. It differs from its foreign counterparts in two major respects: (1) It's more attractive, and (2) It hasn't been corrupted by the automobile.

The square was laid out in the 11th Century, when its area was divided in half by a canal near the cafi tables in the picture. A century later, the canal was filled in, creating the basic shape that exists today.
A major building project got underway in the 16th Century, and new stone paving replaced the old bricks in the early 1700s. The geometric patterns of Istrian stone add to the illusion of depth, although they've also been used to mark the locations of traders' stalls at various times. (In Venice, a city of traders, art and business have long enjoyed a peaceful coexistence.)

Review Helpfulness: 1.5 out of 5 stars

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  • Written Aug 24, 2002
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zys1

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