S Martin's Cake

  The Saint Martin Celebration is an old traditional popular celebration in the North East of Italy that is rooted into the territory and has very old traditions

S. Martin xe 'ndà in sofita a trovar ea nonna Rita nona Rita no ghe gera S.Martin col cùeo par tera E col nostro sachetìn cari signori xe S.Martin

San Martin's short pastry cake

This short pastry cake is made in Venice to celebrate the feast day of Saint Martin, on 11th November every year, and it is a favourite with Venetian children who receive one from their grandparents and parents. The cake is in the shape of Saint Martin on horseback with his sword and, if you come to Venice in that period, you will see it in confectioners’ windows, decorated with sugar icing or coated with plain or milk chocolate and decorated with chocolate drops and candies

 

Oven-proof paper mould Download it here Prepare the paper mould used to cut out the cake. Cut a sheet of oven-proof paper measuring about 30x40 cm. Draw the shape of Saint Martin on horseback with his sword on the paper, cut it out and set it aside.

Alternatively, in Venice, during the period of the feast day, you can buy the cake mould in shops specialised in household goods.

Ingredients for a “Saint Martin” of 20x30 cm

For the short pastry: 250 gr flour 150 gr butter 100 gr sugar 1 egg yolk + 1 whole egg ½ sachet vanillin or vanilla flavouring

For the icing and decoration: 250 – 300 gr icing sugar 1 egg white 5 drops lemon juice 100 gr mixed sweets: chocolate Smarties, sugar sweets, candies, chocolate drops Cooking time: 15/20 minutes at 180°C

Preparation Light the oven. Prepare the pastry base by putting into a bowl, in this order, the flour, the sugar, the softened butter cut into small pieces, the yolk and the whole egg. Keep the extra egg white to one side in a bowl. Start mixing the ingredients by hand, crushing together the eggs, butter and sugar. Once they are fairly well mixed, add the flour and vanilla flavouring. Knead the mixture with your fingertips until it is homogeneous as regards both consistency and colour, working into a ball. Sprinkle some flour on a sheet of oven-proof paper and roll out the pastry into a rectangular sheep measuring about 30x40 cm and cut the outline of the cake. If you like, you can use the trimmings to make a round biscuit. Put the cake in the oven and bake till golden (it will take about 15/20 minutes). When the short pastry is ready, leave it to cool and start to prepare the icing. Put the egg white in a bowl and add the icing sugar, a teaspoonful at a time, stirring with a wooden spoon. When the first teaspoonful has been absorbed, add the second and so on, until you have added half the sugar. At this point squeeze 5 drops of lemon juice into the icing and keep stirring and adding the icing sugar as before. At the end the mixture will be quite thick and you will have to stir it energetically for a minute until it is nice and shiny. Pour the icing into a bag with a medium star-shaped nozzle and start decorating the biscuit. Scatter the biscuit as desired with chocolate drops, sweets or candies. When you have finished decorating it, let the icing “dry” for about 12 hours at room temperature.

An extra idea If you want, you can cover Saint Martin with melted chocolate or colour the icing with food colourings, choose the sweets for decorating it with your children, or change the shape of the cake, for example making biscuits with a hole at the top that you can decorate and hang on the Christmas tree.

Colours of Floods (Burano)

  The Italian island  of Burano, known for its picturesque canals, is also prone to flooding from high tides, a problem heightened by the Venice  city's gradual sinking. Flooding is common this time of year and Thursday's level that reached a peak of 55 inches (140 centimeters) was below the 63 inches (160 centimeters) recorded four years ago in the worst flooding in decades.

More than 59% of Venice was under water on Thursday, as the historic lagoon town was hit by exceptionally high tides. The sea level rose above 140cm overnight and was expected to remain above critical levels for about 15 hours. (Marco Secchi)

More than 59% of Venice was under water on Thursday, as the historic lagoon town was hit by exceptionally high tides. The sea level rose above 140cm overnight and was expected to remain above critical levels for about 15 hours. (Marco Secchi)

More than 59% of Venice was under water on Thursday, as the historic lagoon town was hit by exceptionally high tides. The sea level rose above 140cm overnight and was expected to remain above critical levels for about 15 hours. (Marco Secchi)

 

How to Find an Address in Venice

 

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

  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.

20 Things to do in Venice - 14/20 Getting Lost in Venice

There is nothing, I repeat nothing, that is as important when you’re visiting Venice than just wandering aimlessly through its streets and alleys. If you only had 3-4 hours in the city, I’d recommend that you do this before you set foot inside a single museum or attraction – it’s that critical to enjoying your visit. By wandering (especially if you point yourself in the exact opposite of the direction where the herd is going) you can find Venice’s many charming and often-empty squares and streets, which goes a long way toward helping you appreciate the city. I’d almost say you could ignore basically everything else on this list and just stroll around without a map… But although I might not go that far (again, unless you’ve only got 4 hours or less), I do consider the sentence “get lost in Venice” an order, not a suggestion.

 

 

But really, the point of Venice – for me, anyway – is to wander its maze-like alleyways and bridges, getting thoroughly lost and then finding your way back to something familiar. It’s about accidentally finding a gondola workshop where the men are working their lathes into the groove of the boats outside in the sun. It’s about seeing a market boat (rather than a brick-and-mortar store) selling Venice’s few residents their vegetables and fish. And it’s quite a challenge to do any of that in a day-trip, or by staying close to the Piazza San Marco.

Iphone photo walk and workshop

  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.

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Big Cruises in Venice? NO thank you!

Protesters against large cruise ships docking in Venice are doing all that they can to stop the ships. A protest on Sunday caused several delays for cruises departing the city.  (Marco Secchi)

Seatrade Insider reports that several cruise ships left the Italian city later than planned as roughly 70 small boats operated by protesters took over the water while hundreds more protested from land. Among the ships that faced delays on Sunday was the 3,000-passenger Costa Fascinosa, 1,712-passenger MSC Opera and 2,536-passenger MSC Musica.

This protest, led by the No Grandi Navi (No Big Ships) organization, is part of an ongoing mission to stop cruise ships from coming into the port as locals have are afraid of potential damage.

The protestors believe that the large cruise ships, which pass within yards of Venice's Piazza San Marco, are causing environmental damage to the land. They claim that the ships are too big compared to the city and that the water churned up by them cause damage to Venice's delicate foundation. They fear that the ships may also be impacting historical treasures of the city.

Venice Photo Tour On the Steps of Canaletto

Giovanni Antonio Canal, alias Canaletto, was a painter and engraver who lived in Venice in the 18th century; he is world-famous for his wonderful views of Venice.

Topography, architecture, nature, atmosphere and lights are all mingled in his masterpieces creating realistic scenarios and authentic testimonials of the life and architecture of his time.

This itinerary propose the same places that Canaletto depicted in his works taking the participant to look at each location from the same angulation as if he/she were looking through Canaletto’s own eyes, searching for the differences between the 18th century Venetian landscape and today’s landscape as well as for what has remained unvaried since Canaletto’s time.

Le grand guide de Venise - sur les pas de Guardi et Canaletto 
Guardi, Canaletto et autres artistes du XVIIIe siècle se sont attachés à peindre toutes les facettes de leur ville. Près de trois siècles plus tard, Alain Vircondelet, un des plus grands historiens de Venise,  avec photographe Marco Secchi  s'adonne à une comparaison passionnante entre les photos de la ville d'aujourd'hui et les tableaux de celle d'hier. Douze circuits sont ainsi proposés au lecteur et commentés par l'auteur.

Un guide de Venise passionnant en pleine actualité de l'exposition dédiée à Canaletto au Musée Maillol.

The book is for sale with Amazon

Two interesting weeks in Venice

  The last two weeks in Venice have been quite interesting and challenging!  With photographer colleagues Giulia Candussi and Guillem Lopez  we decided to cover or at least to TRY to cover most of the events on the Venice calendar for this busy period, we opted to use our collective name XianPix and submit the images to Corbis. We were able to send the images super fast and have then live and ready to syndicate in  matter of seconds.

With just one day to go...I would like to thank all the Processors and Editors at Corbis for making this possible and in particular my amazing Editors Jenna and Steffen...without  their help, support, patience and understanding would  have not been possible!I also would like to thank Mike at Corbis Contributors for listening patiently to my daily moaning! ... at the end the photographer  "click" is just a small part of an incredible team work and humans resource effort!

We managed to cover quite a lot of events......for sure not all of them...but a good number...from the Biennale Architecture to the Film Festival, from the Campiello Prize to the opening of Palazzo Grassi ..and to include a few features and parties as well , We could have done more and for sure better...but it has been a very important lesson.

We covered 'The Company You Keep' Premiere at the 69th Venice Film Festival., 'Spring Breakers' Premiere at the 69th Venice Film Festival. 'Bella Addormentata' Premiere at the 69th Venice Film Festival 'To the Wonder' Premiere at the 69th Venice Film Festival. Blessing of the Gondolini for the Historic Regatta. Venice Historic Regatta,  'At Any Price' Premiere at the 69th Venice Film Festival, Celebrity arrivals at the 69th Venice Festival. 'The Reluctant Fundamentalist' Premiere at the 69th Venice Film Festival., 'Inter cities / Intra cities: Ghostwriting the future' opening for the Collateral Events at the 13th Biennale International Architectural Exhibition, 'YAA -Young Arab Architects exhibition' opening for the Collateral Events at the 13th Biennale International Architectural Exhibition, 'Pierre Cardin, Palais Lumiere' opening for the Collateral Events at the 13th Biennale International Architectural Exhibition.'Vogadors architectural Rowers Exhibition' opening for the Collateral Events at the 13th Biennale International Architectural Exhibition, 'Traces of Centuries & Future Steps Exhibition' opening for the Collateral Events at the 13th Biennale International Architectural Exhibition, Festival cinema: first screening in Campo San Polo of the movie "Roma ore 11", Biennale Architettura: padiglioni vincitori e honorable mentions, Red carpet screening of the movie "The Reclutant Fundamentalist"Protest against movie festival, Arrival of VIPS at the Excelsior darsena, Red carpet screening of the movie "Superstars" and Red carpet screening of the movie "The Iceman", Arrival of VIPS at the Excelsior darsena, Meeting the Japanese crew and other stars inside the hall of the Excelsior, Red carpet screening of the movie "Apres Mai" and, Red carpet screening of the movie "Disconnect", Red carpet screening of the movie "Pieta", Red carpet screening of the movie "Linhas de Wellington" and Red carpet screening of the movie "L'intervallo", Opening of the National pavillions for the Biennale Architecture, Opening of palazzo Grassi, Opening and Press Preview of the Titian Exhibition, Coloured Piegeons, Vip Arrivals

Venice Shopping Feature, Luxury Hotels Feature, Final Preparations at the Film Festival, Luxury Yachts Feature,

 

Actress Roxane Mesquida and Josephine de La Baume attend to 'The Company You Keep' Premiere for The 69th Venice Film Festival on September 6, 2012 in Venice, Italy. (Marco Secchi)

Photo by Guillem Lopez/XianPix/Corbis

Cecile de France arrives for the screening of "Superstar" during the 69th Venice Film Festival. superstar is competing for the Golden Globe (Giulia Candussi/XianPix)

Photo by Giulia Candussi/XianPix/Corbis

The most important race of the Historic Regatta are the Gondolini. Every year, the first Sunday of September, the Historical Regatta comes back in Venice, the most traditional among the venetian events, which took place for the first time the 10th of January 1315 under the rule of the doge Giovanni Soranzo (Marco Secchi)

Photo by Marco Secchi/XianPix/Corbis

All our images are on Corbis Archive you can see them all in these two links ....here and here

 

Portrait in Venice?? Here...Jenny and Chris!

Portraits in Venice

A lovely couple along calli and canals of Venice for a portrait session

Marco Secchi Portrait Photographer in Venice

Marco Secchi Portrait Photographer in Venice

Portraits  in Venice

Portrait photography and fine art portraiture in Venice Italy to Celebrate an anniversary or a special occasion in Venice and let an expert bilingual photographer capture these memories forever.

Portrait photography or portraiture is a photography of a person or group of people that displays the expression, personality, and mood of the subject. Like other types of portraiture, the focus of the photograph is usually the person's face, although the entire body and the background may be included.Portrait photographs have been made since virtually the invention of the camera. The relatively low cost of the daguerreotype in the middle of the 19th century led to a general rise in the popularity of portrait photography over painted portraiture. The style of these early works reflected the technical challenges associated with long exposure times and the painterly aesthetic of the time. Subjects were generally seated against plain backgrounds and lit with the soft light of an overhead window and whatever else could be reflected with mirrors. Advances in photographic equipment and techniques developed, and gave photographers the ability to capture images with shorter exposure times the making of portraits outside the studio.

There are many different techniques for portrait photography. Often it is desirable to capture the subject's eyes and face in sharp focus while allowing other less important elements to be rendered in a soft focus. At other times, portraits of individual features might be the focus of a composition such as the hands, eyes or part of the subject's torso.

There are essentially four approaches that can be taken in photographic portraiture — the constructionist, environmental, candid and creative approaches. Each approach has been used over time for different reasons be they technical, artistic or cultural. The constructionist approach is when the photographer in their portraiture constructs an idea around the portrait — happy family, romantic couple, trustworthy executive. It is the approach used in most studio and social photography. It is also used extensively in advertising and marketing when an idea has to be put across. The environmental approach depicts the subject in their environment be that a work, leisure, social or family one. They are often shown as doing something, a teacher in a classroom, an artist in a studio, a child in a playground. With the environmental approach more is revealed about the subject. Environmental pictures can have good historical and social significance as primary sources of information. The candid approach is where people are photographed without their knowledge going about their daily business. Whilst this approach taken by the paparazzi is criticized and frowned upon for obvious reasons, less invasive and exploitative candid photography has given the world superb and important images of people in various situations and places over the last century. The images of Parisians by Doisneau and Cartier-Bresson to name but two, demonstrate this. As with environmental photography, candid photography is important as a historical source of information about people. The Creative Approach is where digital manipulation (and formerly darkroom manipulation) is brought to bear to produce wonderful pictures of people. It is becoming a major form of portraiture as these techniques become more widely understood and used.

Historic Regatta 2012

Every year, the first Sunday of September, the Historical Regatta comes back in Venice, the most traditional among the venetian events, which took place for the first time the 10th of January 1315 under the rule of the doge Giovanni Soranzo. Images are available for licensing in the Corbis archive

Every year, the first Sunday of September, the Historical Regatta comes back in Venice, the most traditional among the venetian events, which took place for the first time the 10th of January 1315 under the rule of the doge Giovanni Soranzo (Marco Secchi)

The most important race of the Historic Regatta are the Gondolini. Every year, the first Sunday of September, the Historical Regatta comes back in Venice, the most traditional among the venetian events, which took place for the first time the 10th of January 1315 under the rule of the doge Giovanni Soranzo (Marco Secchi)

The Doge and Queen Corner take part in 2012 Historic Regatta. Every year, the first Sunday of September, the Historical Regatta comes back in Venice, the most traditional among the venetian events, which took place for the first time the 10th of January 1315 under the rule of the doge Giovanni Soranzo (Marco Secchi)

 

Get around in Venice

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...

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.

Celebration for St Roch in Venice

 

The Confraternity of Saint Roch, founded in 1478 and immediately recognized by the Council of Ten, received the relic of Saint Roch's body in 1485.

Between 1517 and 1549, the Confraternity moved to one of the most prominent and captivating buildings in the city, one that preserves the extraordinary, original work of Tintoretto. The Confraternity of Saint Roch, which was made an "Arch brotherhood" in 1789 by Pio VI, has continued its activities without interuption to the present day.

A traditional celebration take place every year on the 16th of August

 (Marco Secchi)

Greg and Mary Catherine Portrait session in Venice

Very hot day when I met with Greg and Mary Catherine for a portrait session in Venice. A really friendly and fun to work with couple, hope to see them again if they come to Venice for a longer stay!

 (Marco Secchi)

 (Marco Secchi)

 (Marco Secchi)