Enjoy the building. For a break from sightseeing — and a fun meal — explore the back lanes, and pop into a bar serving cicchetti — that's the uniquely Venetian hors d'oeuvres. Today an elevator zips you effortlessly to the top to enjoy a commanding view. And, until the 16th century, when explorers like Vasco da Gama and Columbus opened up the world leaving Venice stuck in a geographic hole, Venice did dominate. The most lavish face the Grand Canal. The city was driven by an interest in dominating Mediterranean trade. To navigate over shifting sand bars, the boats were flat-bottomed, and the captains stood up to see. Alessandro: With your finger, with your wine, yeah. Palaces like these remind us that Venetian merchants amassed lots of capital. Video: Carnival in Venice It’s Carnival time! But I particularly enjoy seeing art in the setting for which it was designed — that's in situ — like at the Chiesa dei Frari. His weekly public radio program, Travel with Rick Steves first aired in 2005 and is still successfully running. There were 120 doges over 1,100 years. This dramatic bell tower replaced a shorter tower, part of the original fortress that guarded the entry of the Grand Canal. Thanks for joining us. 2:17. The city's ceremonial front door was unfortified and faced the sea. And talk about well-traveled: According to legend, they were cast for Alexander the Great in the fourth century B.C., taken by Nero to Rome, then brought by Constantine to his new capital in the East, Constantinople. Its lacy exterior, a distinct blend of east and west, is Venetian Gothic. With a good regional wine in a rustic setting, you can eat cheaply and make new friends or enjoy old ones. Alessandro: It is a small bite, you know, that you normally have when you have a glass of wine with a friend. Rick started his first television show, Travels in Europe With Rick Steves, which aired from 1991 to 1998. She married the painter Max Ernst. In this episode, Rick Steves explores three historic capitals of Iran: Persepolis, with its splendid monuments; Shiraz, with the tombs of Iran's most beloved poets; and Esfahan, with its extraordinary mosques and endearing people. Venice Lagoon: Zattere waterfront, Italy. Andy FaceTimed me from the Cinque Terre, and I got to wave to 25 happy travelers on the Rick Steves Best of Europe in 21 Days Tour he is leading. Cruise the Canal Grande all the way to St. Mark's Square, starting at the train station (Ferrovia) or the bus station (Piazzale Roma). Rick Steves Istanbul Youtube They also have what they call a Give Away Page, which is over two hundred of their most popular titles, audio books, technical books, and books made into movies. Sign in. Rick Steves is on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube, and you can follow @RickSteves on Twitter. It's a fish-shaped island connected to the mainland by a long causeway. Gondolas are moored everywhere. Entire cities made great and desperate deals with God in hopes that he'd spare them from the dreaded disease. You could take two round-trips on this for the cost of an ice cream cone. Adjacent, Giovanni Bellini's Madonna and Saints was painted by the father of the Venetian Renaissance in a softer, more Venetian style. Alessandro: When you come here to the bar, you have to order what they find in the market in the morning; has to be fresh. The entrance hall features an elaborate and cohesive series of Old Testament scenes. Rick: The great Venetian rogue Casanova did time…this is so cool, I can't believe it… Here in the Senate Hall, nobles gathered to address their colleagues, debate, and pass laws. Practicalities. While the Arsenale is still a military base and is therefore closed to the public, its massive and evocative gate, the Porta Magna, is worth a look (to see the gate, turn left at the Naval Museum and follow the canal). In this shop the workmen — who needed to be good with wood — were traditionally from Italy's mountains. The golden archangel Gabriel at the top always faces into the wind. For four centuries, this was the most powerful piece of real estate in Europe. Today, they're back in what Venetians believe is their rightful home. Alessandro: By the tail, and you eat it, just you want, they are fantastic…dopo di me! The long, lofty nave, flooded with light, was ideal for large gatherings to hear sermons. This city also has several palaces now functioning as art galleries, which are packed with old Venetian masterpieces. Along with a powerful collection of weapons — state of the art in its day — it comes with some fun curiosities: tiny crossbows, thumbscrews, and a particularly effective chastity belt. Rialto, which left the politics to San Marco, has long been the commercial district of Venice. Lonely bridges, canals without sidewalks, and reflections of once-upon-a-time grandeur. To gain religious importance and a kind of legitimacy, the Venetians needed some important relics. Mark — looking pretty grumpy after the long voyage — became the city's patron saint, and his symbol, the winged lion, became the symbol of Venice. Rick: And it can make a small meal. A gondola ride is a traditional must for romantics. Turkey, ©2021 Rick Steves' Europe, Inc. | Over the high altar, glowing red and gold like a stained-glass window, Titian's Assumption of the Virgin Mary sets the tone of exuberant beauty found in this church. In 1948, the American-born heiress retired here in Venice. Venice, more than any other European city, has a seductive charm. You can pop in to watch Paolo carving both fórcole and traditional oars. It's perfect for a romantic anniversary, and owner Matteo makes guests feel like royalty. Iran's rich history goes back millennia, to the days when Persepolis was home to "the king of kings." Rick: By the tail! This is a great way to try a variety of dishes. You can walk across it, from head to tail, in about an hour. For centuries it was nicknamed "La Serenissima," the most serene place — and you're about to see why. Rick: So, what is cicchetti? The church is covered with glass and gold mosaics. Originally simple and spacious, over time, it was embellished with chapels, added by wealthy groups or families who hired leading artists to leave their mark. Power in Venice also came from some ancient bones. Stepping into La Salute, the glorious architecture — a round dome atop a hexagonal base — makes the relatively small church seem bigger than it is. The vast Hall of the Great Council could host a meeting of 2,500 nobles. Europe for Foodies It WAS more expensive than travelling independently , and was in fact only part of our 28 day visit to Europe . Terms of Service | Privacy, Venice, Italy: Grand Canal and La Salute Church. Tuscany's Dolce Vita by Rick Steves' Europe. The Doge's Palace was built to show off the power and wealth of the Republic. Posted on March 24, 2020 April 29, 2020 Daily Dose of Europe: Piero’s Venice Alessandro: If you keep going for three, four bars, yes. But all the magic sits on a practical foundation of political and economic might. I have taken one tour - and that was the 14 Family Europe Rick steve’s Tour , with one of my three kids ( my 11 yr old daughter ) . Travel as a Political Act, England & Wales According to legend, St. Mark actually traveled here, personally bringing Christianity to the region. For an ear-shattering experience, be here at the top of the hour. The doge was something of an elected king, which only makes sense in an aristocratic republic like Venice. Boats come by every few minutes, so you can hop off and on all along the way. His bones would be perfect. Get inspired with Rick Steves’ recommended places to go and things to do, with tips, photos, videos, and travel information on Venice. 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