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by Philip Greenspun, January 1995 (updated December 2007)

"The Venetian people have little to call their own--little more than the bare privilege of leading their lives in the most beautiful of towns. Their habitations are decayed; their taxes heavy; their pockets light; their opportunities few. ...

"... The only way to care for Venice as she deserves it, is to give her a chance to touch you often--to linger and remain and return."

-- Henry James (1843-1916)


Article revised December 2007.

Readers' Comments

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Gary Rodziewicz , September 11, 1998; 11:41 P.M.

One great experience in life must be arriving at the Venice train station. After rolling through the countryside of the Veneto, one pulls into yet another Italian train station. You grab your bags, walk through the lobby of the station, walk out the back door and WHAM! You are at the vaporetto stop on the canal which is the only way to get around in the city. You can't avoid getting immersed in this city right from the start. OK, OK, Ruskin got a little gushy, but this place grabs you and seduces you and just won't let go.

Marco Tortato , April 06, 1999; 03:38 A.M.

As a Venetian in the US, I found a little of my years in Venice in these pages. The images really brought my mind back to those places, to their perfumes and their sounds... their past and their history is well portrayed here. Thanks.

Sonia Tommasini , July 11, 1999; 03:31 A.M.

If you are interested to the last info about the major event in Venice, The Carnival of Venice, with an historic revision and the official program for the millennium edition, visit our web site at: http://www.carnivalofvenice.com

Bill O'Neil , June 10, 2001; 02:26 P.M.

Venice was as if waking up in a dream. We dragged our luggage off the train to grab the vaporetti (water shuttle) to the San Pedro stop. The open-faced boat was wall-to-wall people. It started to occur to us that we packed three times as much as we needed. Our luggage took up as much room as we did and we received scowls. We knew what they were thinking: “More stupid Americans.” Maybe we were.

I have never seen a place like Venice. There are no cars or scooters as with noisy Milan. It’s an architectural maze of concrete and water channels where you walk or take a boat ride to your destination. These old buildings were erected close to each other with enough passageways to facilitate shops, restaurants and homes.

I didn’t want to leave Venice. Holding hands with my wife, breathing in the misty Venetian air while getting lost in the maze of these beautiful old buildings lining the waterways will stay with me forever. “City of love” is an understatement.

Maria Bostenaru , May 12, 2005; 03:34 A.M.

Piazza in front of the Venice railway station, in April 2003

@ Gary Rodziewicz

to complete that comment: here a picture for how it looks when arriving to the Venice railway station. [sorry about the construction site; it was like it everywhere in Italy while I was travelling; after all, the monuments have to be conserved]



Sarah Jane Holt , April 06, 2008; 02:18 P.M.

I have just returned from a holiday in Venice and resented leaving. I have never fallen in love with a city so much in my life. Seeing the picture in the comments of the view which greets the traveller outside the railway station defines the experience. As soon as you arrive you realise you are in another world. I could spend a year in Venice and it still wouldn't be enough time to paint and photograph the city,

Image Attachment: gondolaadjust.jpg

Amanda Weir , April 28, 2008; 07:17 A.M.

Hello everybody. I have just returned from my recent trip to Italy (this is the fourth time that I spend my holidays in Italy). I am a fanatical of Tuscany travel, in particular the Tuscany over Florence. I always book Italy hotels on this site, a guide to small independent hotels in Italy

theresia t , June 17, 2008; 04:07 A.M.


I just visited Venice during my europe trip last month. Unfortunately it was a short two hours visit. I did not even have the time for the gondola ride. :(

David Hedley , August 12, 2008; 09:24 A.M.

Doge's Palace;


Vinicio Tassani , April 19, 2011; 04:57 A.M.

Venice is the town where I was born; I use to have long walks, leaving my eyes free to catch the moment, discovering new nice places to see and visit.

Everytime is a different experience.

If you are looking to a photo guide in Venice, feel free to contact me.

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