"The Grand Canal" Canal Grande Tip by antistar
Canal Grande, Venice: 205 reviews and 361 photos
The first thing you should do on any visit to Venice is take a trip up the Grand Canal on any of the local water taxis that ply its snaking inverted s-shaped length. Take a trip when you arrive, and then take several more trips, in both directions, at night, at sunset, and first thing in the morning. You'll see something different each time, and the water taxis give relatively cheap entertainment in an expensive city. You can ride out on a gondola too, if you feel like splashing out.
There are beautiful buildings stretching out all along the Grand Canal, but the key sight on the journey from the Stazione to the Plaza San Marco is the Rialto bridge, striding the Canal Grande about half way up its length. This magnificent and famous bridge was originally nothing more than a floating pontoon, set down in the 12th century to serve the market on the east bank. The current stone bridge dates from 1591, and was considered such an outrageous design at the time, that it was thought it could never last very long. And yet here it still is.
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