Piazza San Marco, a wonderful square of Wonder

Our trip to Italy with an unvaccinated 7- year old was totally unforgettable, despite the worries from Corona, we managed to get it all done.We came back home healthy, tanned, and packed with good memories from Italy, of course eaten tons of Gelato!Made it to Venice around 4pm and after we checked in to our hotel, we immediatley looked for the Corona Test center. Luckily, they have testing facility in Venice but the crowds is oh yes, self-explanatory–daunting!During that time, it is imperative for children to be tested, and also for our own sanity so we did it . I have packed dozens of self´-test kits as well.Anyway, everything went well and we moved on to explore this beautiful, unique and one of a kind eternal city–Veneto!

There´s no need for me to write languishly about how pretty this place is. I don´t even need to elaborate it´s details .For me, it is really worth seeing it once in your life, and if you ever saw it, then you would definitely understand what I mean.

St. Mark´s Square is actually the most important place in Venice.For the residents, it´s the heart of the city. I mean, what can you expect from a square? or “la Piazza “as they called it in Italian? It´s just as the same as the other square´s we´ve seen numerous times in other countries. But then,seeing this huge square, I can totally agree why Napoleon called it ” the world´s most beautiful drawing room“.

One of the reasons is its interesting Architecture and history“!

Don´t you love it as well when you visit a historical place where from the things you´ve read from a book, or learnt in your History class just came alive? It´s an enormous feeling. It was always been my dream to see this place and I am grateful to see it.

The church of St. Mark, the Bell Tower, Cafe Florian, the oldest Cafe , the columns were prisoners were executed, the majestic view of the Grand Canal, and the amazing architecture of the Palazzo Ducale,all in one square. Different phases of architecture in a 360 panoramic view.My daughter of course chased the pigeons in the square and admire the souvenir stalls, it´s in a child´s blood! As for me, I am busy photographing every angle.

We walked through this square countless times and walked through it as we go on with our visits to the island of Burano and hopping from one water taxi to one Vaporetto so everyday, I have different impressions of this square.

The majestic St. Mark´s Basilica in Venice, a masterpiece of Gothic Architecture
Close up detail of the church´s facade where Byzantine, Romanesque and a bit of Islamic influences are evident

Details of the church was spectacular, the carvings on the walls and facades are all well worth to be seen. One time,we were supposed to go to another island but it was rainy and windy so while waiting for the rain to stop, we waited in the alleys of the Doges Palace (Palazzo Ducale) then suddenly had a change of plan.Fortunately, they run a palace tour and only vaccinated and tested visitors are allowed to get in.

Impeccable painted ceilings in the chamber rooms inside the Palazzo Ducale

I had a stiffneck admiring all these wonders. Too much that it exhilarates me, the beauty and grandeur of these chamber rooms are so exquisite. The colors, attention to details and political significance blended all together.I can´t get enough of it, and I think I needed a lecture to understand all these figures and mouldings.

View from the Bridge of Sighs (Ponte Dei Sospiri)

When we made the tour of this Palace, we were able to see not only the chamber rooms but also the Prison cells, as bleak as it can be. There was a certain point where we passed through narrow alleys and have a glimpse of the canals, rooftops and outside views, especially from the famous “Bridge of Sighs“. It´s where the last glimpse for the prisoners who were about to be executed. It´s their last view of their lives.

The four Horses of St. Mark (Cavalli di San Marco) guarding the square since 1815.

Piazza San Marco is also the lowest part in Venice so actually it´s the first place to be flooded during ” Acqua Alta“.

I watched the film “Inferno” with Tom Hanks and Felicity Jones and one of the film location in this movie was taken in Venice, right here in St. Mark´s square .I just love the riddles and symbolic narrations of Dr. Langdon talking about the 4 horses in St. Mark´s church.

Speaking of details, when Venice participated in the Sack of Constantinople during the 4th Crusade, Doge Enrico Dandolo sent the bronze horses which are actually made of copper to Venice, where they stood overlooking the Piazza di Marco.In 1797, Napoleon took the horses and placed them on top of Arc de Triomphe du Carrousel (the arc that faces the Louvre) in Paris. Then Napoleon looted them again for France when he conquered Venice in 1797.I realized that these horses are quite something, what would Napoleon so obssessed with it.

It’s worth noting that the horses overlooking St. Mark’s Square today are only replicas–but you can still see the originals by visiting the museum on the second floor of the church.

This post is inspired by Lens-Artist Challenge # 173 : Interesting Architecture hosted by the wonderful Tina and as true as what she have written in her post “ Photography brings the world to us: art, architecture, fashion, nature, war and far-off lands ( Tim Mantoani). Posted as well to credit the challenge by Patti, asking us to look for Shapes and Designs.

15 thoughts on “Piazza San Marco, a wonderful square of Wonder

  1. A lovely pictorial summary of the reasons that Venice is so beloved to so many. We visited years ago, before the worst of its sinking was known. Now we see stories of water up to the knees after a rain and cruise ships clustered around the docks and it makes us so sad. It’s nice to see a positive review instead of gloom and doom. Beautifully captured.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wonderful post, JBD! I love all the architectural images and the beautiful details you found in that amazing piazza. I never took the tour. From the sounds of it, you saw so many interesting features and parts of the palace.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hello Tina…I guess one visit is not enough to really see all the facets of this place.I am glad we never saw that Acqua Alta, happens normally in Winter months. But then, there is really no place like Venice so it´s just worthy to highlight what I have seen when I was there.
    Soooo lovely to hear from you. Thanks for the lovely theme.


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