For its particular town-planning and the invaluable artistic treasures, Venice is considered one of the most beautiful cities in the world and ranks among the UNESCO world heritage. The main body of Venice, seen from above, looks like a fish with its tail pointing east. The center is traditionally divided into six neighborhoods and spread on 118 small islands connected by 354 bridges. The heart of the city of Venice is St Mark’s Square where the Basilica of San Marco stands. It is covered with mosaics representing the history of Venice, together with beautiful bas-reliefs depicting the months of the year. Next to the Basilica stands the Palazzo Ducale, seat of Government of ‘the Serenissima’. It was built in the fifteenth century of Istrian marble, and is now a museum with works by the greatest Venetian artists. Opposite of the Palazzo Ducale rises the bell tower that was built in 1173 as a lighthouse for sailors. Another symbol of the city is the Rialto Bridge. Built in 1591, for a long period it has been the only way to cross the Grand Canal on foot. It remained the only bridge until 1854, when the Ponte dell’Accademia was built. On both sides of the central body of the Rialto bridge there are luxury stores and at the end of the bridge there are the picturesque fish market and the church of San Giacomo di Rialto. Another important building is the Accademy of Fine Arts which contains many paintings by famous venetian painters such as Tizian, Tintoretto, Giorgione to mention just a few. Those who are interested in seeing sights outside of the town of Venice can take a trip by “vaporetto” (boat) to the island of Lido or to the island of Murano famous for its glass-work.
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