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Old 16th March 2010, 22:51   #16
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Default Venezia

Venice, or Venezia to the Italians, is famous for its canals and is one of the most well preserved cities in Europe. There are about 150 canals, splitting up nearly 120 islands, all connected by about 400 bridges. There are no cars in Venice. Instead, water taxis, waterbuses, waterambulance(high speed waterboats) and the world-famous gondolas sweep along its myriad of canals.

Arriving in Venice at night, we headed straight for our hotel which was in Maestre. Maestre can be considered a suburb of Venice. This is the penultimate stop for all trains heading for Venice. Hotel rates here are a lot less and it takes only 1 Euro and 10 minutes to hop on to any train and reach Venice.

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-1.jpg

We reached the Venice central station from where we got a €12 pass to travel all day in the water buses. The water bus/taxi or gondola are the only way to travel in Venice else you gotta walk. From the central station we tool a water bus and reached our first stop – Piazza de San Marco. Napoleon called the Piazza "the finest drawing room in Europe". It is what Times Square is to New York n Trafalgar Square is to London. The place is literally covered with tourist n pigeons.

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-2.jpg
(Photo courtesy: JSU News Wire)

St Mark’s Square originated from the 9th century as a small area in front of St Mark’s Basilica. It was enlarged in the 12th century to its present size and shape. The Procuraties are three connected building on the eastern side of the square. It used to house the Venetian offices earlier but now there are cafes, museums, souvenir shops there. In the autumn months, the tide rises n the square resembles a lake.

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-3.jpg

St Mark’s Basilica (Basilica de San Marco) was built in 832 AD and is renowned for it’s opulent design, gilded Byzantine mosaics, and its status as a symbol of Venetian wealth and power 11th century onwards. Reportedly, the church had in fact been based on two churches from Constantinople, now Istanbul. The horses that you see in the pic are ‘Horses of St Mark’. They are replicas of the sculptures plundered from the Hippodrome of Constantinople during the Fourth Crusade.

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-4.jpg

The square’s tallest structure is St Mark’s Campanile. Built as a bell tower for the basilica, it actually collapsed a few times before being totally rebuilt in 1902. The common feature to both the basilica and the tower were the insanely long queues. Well that’s one thing which u gotta face when u are traveling in peak tourist season. Not to mention the problems in finding accommodation. One advice to travelers would be to always get a confirmed booking before embarking on a travel to any such popular tourist destination. You just can’t walk into a hotel and get a room.

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-5.jpg

Opposite the Campanile, and adjoinig St Mark’s Basilica is the Doge’s Palace. Built between the 14th and 15th centuries, the palace was the official residence of the Doge (Chief Magistrate or Leader of the Republic of Venice). Very ornately designed marble exterior.

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Just take a stroll around the place and are sure to witness someone posing in a mask. The wearings of masks by Venetians was def one of the mankind’s most eccentric practices. Venice at a time was perhaps the most flourishing state in Europe and the inhabitants had a very high standard of living. With a level of social wealth unequaled since, the citizens of Venice developed a unique culture - one in which the concealing of the identity in daily life became paramount to daily activity. Part of the secrecy was pragmatic: there were things to do, people to see, and perhaps you might not want others to know what deals you were cutting. After all, the city is relatively small. Don’t return from Venice without one as a souvenir.

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The Rialto Bridge (Ponte di Rialto) is a bridge spanning the Grand Canal. It is the oldest bridge across the canal and probably the most famous in the city. The current structure was built in just three years, between 1588 and 1591, as a permanent replacement for the boat bridge and three wooden bridges that had spanned the Grand Canal at various times since the 12th century.

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Gondolas were for centuries the chief means of transportation within Venice. Though now-a-days its mostly used by the tourists. A 40 minute ride will set u back by €100. What the hell!! You don’t come to Venice everyday. But the trip turned out to be quite a disappointment. The gondolier didn’t sing any song, the small canals were kinda stinking and although he did point out Casanova’s house and a couple of other details I was rather expecting more.

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For me the most interesting time in Venice was spent roaming around in the streets, hogging on some mouthwatering pizza slices & checking out the souvenir shops which house some of the most beautiful Murano glass work. The glass workers were banished to the island of Murano centuries ago because of the fire risk to Venice.

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-10.jpg

Venice is a walker's paradise. Its small, easy to cover but the maps can be a bit confusing and you could get lost. But there’s only so much ground to get lost. Narrow lanes, by-lanes and bridges, some no longer than 12 feet, connecting them. Yet again one comes across all the big fashion labels n ofcourse Ferrari. I got a glass bottle with a gondola blown into it from the side wall, complete with a gondolier.

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-11.jpg

At sunset the Venetian skyline is a scene to watch and behold. No wonder Claude Monet was inspired to paint ‘Sunset in Venice’.

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-12.jpg

Venice was an unforgettable experience. Surreal, dream-like, just like an altered state of reality. Walking down the streets that don’t lead to anywhere in particular. The water flowing beneath your feet quietly, noisy tourists at places and the much needed silence at some. Armed with the map and the anxiety the traveler continues. Halts for a while and then resumes.

Would recommend Italy to each and everyone.

Coming up!! Some random pics from the trip.
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Old 16th March 2010, 23:12   #17
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Inside St Peter’s Basilica
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-00160-vatican-museum-sistine-chapel.jpg


Light strained through the glass windows. One of my favorite.
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Vatican City from a distance. Vatican is an independent country and the smallest one at that.
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-00250-basilica-di-san-pietro.jpg


Shot through the ruins of Roman Forum
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Roman forum
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Current residents of the Roman Forum
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Bell on top of the Pisa tower
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Colourfully decorated buildings in Venice
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Campo di Marte , Venice
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Shoreline of Venice. On the extreme left would be St Mark's Square and Doge's Palace (Not visible in the photo. Just mentioned to give you a directional perspective)
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-01170-venice.jpg

Last edited by lsp : 16th March 2010 at 23:30.
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Old 16th March 2010, 23:26   #18
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Procuratie Vecchie, Piazza de San Marco
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-01230-procuratie-vecchie-piazza-de-san-marco.jpg


Campo di Marte at night
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-01370-campo-di-marte.jpg


Campo di Marte
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-01380-campo-di-marte.jpg


Shot another plane while on flight to Milan. This is the only time I've seen another plane flying, while myself in flight. Before the sighting, the pilot announced on the PA system that we would be seeing a plane on the left of our plane. Reportedly, it is a rarity.
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-italy-trip-441.jpg


Alps, shot from the plane while flying from Copenhagen to Milan.
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-italy-trip-397.jpg

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~~~The End~~~
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Old 2nd April 2010, 17:37   #19
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Hey ISP:

Great snaps! Could I ask which camera & lens you were using for the shots of the architecture and the sunset.

Thanks!
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Old 3rd April 2010, 17:56   #20
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Hi ISP,

Great pictures, specially the pictures from the angles you have taken
is quite admiring. Being myself an artist my favourite paintings were landscaping and your pictures were treat for me.

If you have more pictures of Italy or other places, please share it if possible.

Regards,
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Old 6th April 2010, 15:32   #21
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Thanks fatboyslim. I was using Canon PowerShot S1 IS (3.1 Mpx, 10X zoom) for all the photos, except the Alps one. Most of them have been shot in manual mode.

Quote:
Originally Posted by fatboyslim View Post
Hey ISP:

Great snaps! Could I ask which camera & lens you were using for the shots of the architecture and the sunset.

Thanks!
Fatboyslim

Thanks Vintagepoint. Coming from an artist it sure sounds good to me.
I will surely put up some more pics soon.
Quote:
Originally Posted by vintagepoint5 View Post
Hi ISP,

Great pictures, specially the pictures from the angles you have taken
is quite admiring. Being myself an artist my favourite paintings were landscaping and your pictures were treat for me.

If you have more pictures of Italy or other places, please share it if possible.

Regards,
PS: The username is Lsp

@Mods: Can I please have the first letter of my username in Capital?

Last edited by lsp : 6th April 2010 at 15:33.
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Old 6th April 2010, 16:00   #22
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Default Some more pics

Inside St Peter's
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-00090-vatican-museum-sistine-chapel.jpg

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Basilica di San Pietro's domes
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-00220-basilica-di-san-pietros-dome.jpg

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-00230-basilica-di-san-pietro.jpg

Thats one famous hotel near Castle Saint Angelo, don't rem the name.
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-00270_1.jpg

Colosseum - Doesn't look that good in natural light.
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-00370-colosseum.jpg

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-00420-colosseum.jpg

An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-00510-colosseum.jpg

Roman Forum
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-00670-roman-forum.jpg

Palazzo Ducale, Venice
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-01190-palazzo-ducale-venice.jpg

Gondola's@Venezia
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-01250-gondolasvenezia.jpg

Libreria, Piazza de San Marco
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-01320-venice-skyline-campo-di-marte.jpg

Venice skyline, Campo di Marte
An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006-01350-libreria-piazza-de-san-marco.jpg
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Old 26th July 2013, 22:35   #23
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Default Re: An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006

I should've seen your thread long ago. very good pix.
I just finished my 10 day trip in Italy. your posts/pix look so Deja Vu.
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Old 27th July 2013, 03:35   #24
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Default Re: An Old Travelogue - Italy 2006

As i go through your post i am reminded of my time spent in Italy ,i feel that it is difficult to see any city like Venice or Rome for that matter in a day or two.For those who are planning a visit to Italy i would recommend also a must on the itinerary the following places:
1. Glass blowing factory@Venice and the Venetian masks.
2. Florence esp Ponte Vecchio,the Piazza della Signoria,The Plazzao.
3. Ferrari Galleria and store @Modena ( The birth place of Ferrari).
4. Genoa for the largest aquarium aquarium in Italy and second largest in Europe and the house of Christopher Columbus.
5.The Chinque Terre which is a UNESCO heritage site(Must visit for the natural beauty)

Regards
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