Venicescapes Historical Tour, Italy

We found our tour through the internet. Our host was Michael, a native of New York State who has been living in Venice for the past 12 years. He has a fantastic organization that is dedicated to preserving and teaching ignorant travelers about the history of Venice. This was by far the highlight of our trip and we have dedicated a page to it.

Our tour started in St. Mark's Square with the very origins of Venice and proceeded throughout the city. From St. Mark's Square we took a waterbus across The Grand Canal to view a boat yard and dicuss the geographical origins of Venice. Geography played a huge role in it's historical development starting with early trading of salt for all other necessities of life. We studied the ancient system of cisterns for rain water collection. Venice did not have a piped in water supply until the late 19th century. We spent most of the afternoon discussing the political and religious influences on Venice as it bounced between The Holy Roman and The Byzantine Empires over seven centuries. After lunch we visited the Palace Pisani, a private 15th century home that is still owned by the Pisani family. From here we travel on to the Arsenale where galleys could be produced in less than 24 hours. After we discussed the effects of the Plague on Venice we toured St. Mary's (Santa Maria della Salute). This beautiful church was built in the 17th century and dedicated to St. Mary in the hope of bringing the prosperity of the 15th and 16th centuries back to Venice. The tour was entitled "Story of a Mercantile empire" and you can find more information at their website: www.venicescapes.org

Ancient map of Venice from Palace Pisani:

Rialto Bridge:

A view of the Grand Canal from the Rialto Bridge:

Gabi at the courtyard entrance of Palace Pisani:

Looking at Palace Pisani from across the Grand Canal (the coral building in the middle):

One of the many beautiful rooms inside the Palace Pisani. Check out the famous Italian Murano glass chandelier:

Mike on the second floor terrace of Palace Pisani:

Gabi standing on the interior staircase of Palace Pisani:

St. Mary's (Santa Maria della Salute) from a waterbus:

Gabi sitting in front of St. Mary's (Santa Maria della Salute):

View of the altar inside St. Mary's:

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