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Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Things to do in Venice.............


A particularly intriguing way to immerse yourself in the charm of Florence, Rome, and Venice is to discover their Government Palaces, which contain not only extraordinary works of art but also centuries of power play, intrigue, plots, and mysteries, and even murder. From the Middle Ages to 1861, the Serenissima Republic of Venice ruled by Doges in the Ducal Palace, the Medicis' Palazzo Vecchio in Florence, and the Rome of the Popes in the Vatican were hotbeds of political conflict and conspiracies that make today’s politics look relatively tame. In this newsletter we recommend things to see and places to visit that will take you back to the days of fascinating political mayhem while you enjoy Italy’s extraordinary art and architecture.


The Doge in Venice

Venice was a maritime republic, the most powerful of Italy because of its trade with Asia, and was ruled by the Doge and the Council of Ten. Among the saddest “dark” stories of the city's history is that of April 17, 1355. The Doge Marin Falier tried to establish a dictatorship, but the plot was discovered. Bloody revolt broke out, which was quelled only with difficulty. The conspirators were executed in front of the Palazzo Ducale and Falier was beheaded on the Scala dei Giganti (the Giants' Staircase), where the Doges were elected. In the Ducal Palace you will find extraordinary paintings of Bosch, Titian, and Tintoretto, as well as breathtaking rooms such as that of the Great Council, a monumental space dominated by the portraits of the Doges. In 1366 the Council of Ten ordered the effigy of Falier to be covered with a black cloth that says "This was the place of Marin Falier, beheaded for treason." With the Doge's Palace Secret Itineraries you'll hear these stories where they happened and experience the oldest and most feared prisons of Venice. Among others, it held the illustrious Casanova, known for his political views and reckless love affairs.

City outside of Time

Venice is the most postmodern city in the world, the only one in which instead of cars, gondolas travel the picturesque canals. Venice is an open air museum where time seems to stand still. Walking the calli is one of the most beautiful experiences Italy has to offer, just like a gondola ride, a must for visitors and lovers! Don't limit your visit to St. Mark's Square with its Basilica. Experience the Clock Tower, the Accademia Gallery with paintings by Titian and Tintoretto, and the Ca 'd'Oro, most beautiful 18th century palazzo. Include Venice in your itinerary, it's easy to reach! If you land in Milan, the express train takes just over two hours and about €30. From Rome, the journey takes about 4 hours with a change at Bologna. In October Italotreno will offer Rome to Venice at discounted prices. The low cost airline Easyjet offers daily flights from Rome in less than an hour - with €25 to €50 you'll be in Venice. Don't miss the chance for a fall visit, when the mist from the canals creates the atmosphere of a lifetime! And for an experience out of the ordinary, dine on an ancient Venetian Galleon.

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