The magnificent splendour of Venice
Throughout the course of the summer months, Pullmantur Cruises will be operating a series of Mediterranean cruises – taking passengers to a range of gorgeous cities and islands. The Adriatic is undoubtedly one of the gems of the Mediterranean, home many majestic cities and towns in Croatia, Montenegro and Italy. Without question, one of the most appealing destinations in the Adriatic sits within the northern regions of Italy in the form of the floating city of Venice.
Historically, it could be argued that Venice has been ruled my empires than any other city on earth. Beginning life as part of the Roman Empire back in the first century, Venice has been impacted by the likes of the Byzantines, the Crusaders, the Papal States and even the Mongols. The fact much of this history is reflected throughout the city today is one of the main reasons why so many people are enticed into visiting Venice. There are many palaces, churches, bridges, museums and much more to see – much of which can be enjoyed during a romantic gondola ride along the city’s threading waterways.
Pullmantur’s Horizon will operate a number of seven-night ‘Venetian Cruise’ itineraries throughout the June, July and August – taking avid holiday-makers to this beautiful floating metropolis. This week, we take a closer look at some of the must-see sights to visit during your time in Venice.
Doge’s Palace (Palazzo Ducale)
Upon being established in 1340, the Doge’s Palace became – as the name suggests - the seat of the Doge of Venice. The oldest parts of this magnificent structure are the 14th century sculptures which face out to the lagoon, but there are many ornately-designed features within the palace. Having been open as a museum since 1923, you can wander the chambers in which the Doge once lived, the institutional chambers and the beautiful artwork that lines the walls throughout.
Bell Tower of St. Mark (Campanile di San Marco)
The dominant red tower of St Mark’s Campanile, which is part of St Mark’s Basilica, is located in the Pizza San Marco and is one of the most iconic sights of Venice. This 98.6 metre-tall structure is topped by a cube structure and a pyramid-spire, with a golden weathervane inspired by Archangel Gabriel. Remarkably, the Bell Tower has been rebuilt and significantly repaired a total of four times since 1388 following earthquakes, fires and storms, with a lightning rod equipped in 1820.
Astronomical Clock Tower (Torre dell’Orologio)
Torre dell’Orologio was one of many astronomical clocks built throughout Europe during the 14th and 15th centuries. Built between 1496 and 1499, the clock features two bronze figures, who would ring the bell for each hour of the day. The clock follows the positions of Saturn, Jupiter, Marks, Venus and Mercury, as well as the position of the sun.
There are four bridges that span the Grand Canal in Venice, with the Rialto Bridge being undoubtedly the oldest and most iconic of these. Successfully constructed in 1591, it was built to replace a wooden bridge which once stood in its place and follows on from the vibrant and lively Rialto market. If you are looking for just one perfect photo opportunity in Venice, the Rialto Bridge is undoubtedly the perfect spot.
San Giacomo di Rialto
While there are many churches that have been built in Venice over the last 2,000 years, you may be interested to know that San Giacomo di Rialto is considered to be among the oldest of these. It is thought to have been constructed in the 5th century AD, but has received many modern modifications. These include a 15th century clock tower above the entrance and the red pillars lined with gold throughout the church itself.
It goes without saying that Venice is one of the most popular destinations in the Mediterranean, with so much to see and explore. Throughout the summer, Pullmantur’s Sovereign will also be operating itineraries in the Mediterranean, taking passengers to cities such as Rome, Barcelona and Cannes.