Venice Shore Excursions
St Marks Square, Venice
St Mark’s Square must be one of the most recognisable tourist sights in the world. It was first laid out during the 11th Century and painstakingly constructed over the following three centuries. Famously the Romantic French poet Alfred de Musset called it the 'drawing-room of Europe'. The square was the political and religious hub of the Venetian Republic.
St Mark's Basilica, Venice
The St Mark’s Basilica is the most beautiful building on St. Marks’s square and one of the finest examples of Byzantine architecture. Here you'll find the famous Pala d’Oro, an altarpiece of solid gold encrusted with precious gems. It was made by Byzantine goldsmiths as long ago as 976.
Doges Palace, Venice
The Doge's Palace stands next to the Basilica. The current building was largely constructed in the 14th century. The palace was the residence of the Doge of Venice and contained the offices of a number of political institutions, arranged around a central courtyard. The most spectacular room is the vast Grand Council chamber, originally the meeting place for the legislature. At the rear of the palace is the small and sad Bridge of Sighs, connecting the palace to the prison.
Rialto Bridge, Venice
The Rialto Bridge is a bridge spanning the Grand Canal. It is the oldest bridge across the canal. It was built in 1591, to replace a whole series of wooden bridges, each of which had collapsed under the ever increasing traffic. Its design is very similar to the final wooden bridge it succeeded. The bridge has become one of the architectural icons of Venice.
The Arsenal, Venice
The Venetian Arsenal played a leading role in Venetian empire-building. It is situated in one of the most interesting areas of Venice, the Castello sestiere. The Arsenal was founded in the 12th century and enlarged in the following centuries to become the greatest naval shipyard in the world, with a unique method for the mass-production of ships. Of special interest to cruise passengers is the Lion of Piraeus, which stands at the Porta Magna, the entrance to the Arsenal. This was stolen from the Port of Piraeus in the 17th century.
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